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Nature Notes

On April 16, 2004 the Westborough News started carrying a bi-monthly column known as Nature Notes prepared by Annie Reid and Garry Kessler on behalf of the Westborough Community Land Trust. The column uses striking photography and commentary to describe the plants and animals that residents encounter while walking the trails throughout Westborough.

Anne and Garry were awarded the WCLT 2004 President's Award having contributed their many talents, most recently in nature photography and writing, to the growth and vitality of the WCLT. The couple's love of nature motivated them to explore the Westborough woods with their two daughters for the last 25 years.

For those who missed a column or wish to review the previous articles we present here the previous Nature Notes articles. If you wish to get the latest articles subscribe to the Westborough News For those who wish to read the articles from the beginning start here. Or pick the article of interest from the following indices:

Nature notes by date of publication

Nature notes by common name of flora and fauna

Nature notes by latin name of flora and fauna

Nature notes by category




Nature Notes by Common Name

American bittersweet
Celastrus scandens
An invasive decoration
December 12, 2008
American chestnut
Castanea dentata
Persistence of the American chestnut
October 16, 2015
American copper butterfly
Lycaena phlaeas
Late butterflies
October 26, 2007
American elm
Ulmus americana
The first butterfly of spring
April 29, 2005
American hazelnut
Corylus americana
Hazelnuts in odd husks
August 12, 2011
American lady
Vanessa virginiensis
A good year for butterflies
May 28, 2010
American phragmites
Phragmites americanus
Invasive phragmites and a native butterfly
September 25, 2015
American robin
Turdus migratorius
Watching for robins
February 24, 2012
Early birds get the dried fruit
March 3, 2006
American toad
Bufo americanus
Songsters with warts
May 7, 2010
Aphrodite fritillary
Speyeria aphrodite
Our earliest wild violet
May 4, 2007
Asian Longhorned Beetle
Anoplophora glabripennis
Think spring, think maples
April 10, 2015
Asian Longhorned Beetle at Westborough’s Border
March 23, 2012
Atlantic white cedar
Chamaecyparis thyoides
Westborough's Atlantic White Cedars
February 4, 2005
Autumn olive
Elaeagnus umbellata
Native and invasive fall colors
October 30, 2009
Bald eagle
Haliaeetus leucocephalus
Bald eagle fly-overs
August 1, 2014
Baltimore checkerspot
Euphydryas phaeton
Baltimore checkerspot butterflies and gypsy moths
July 24, 2015
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Banded hairstreak
Satyrium calanus
Seeing Small Butterflies
July 13, 2012
Barred owl
Strix varia
Barred owls begin courting
February 3, 2012
Beaked hazelnut
Corylus cornuta
Hazelnuts in odd husks
August 12, 2011
Beaver
Castor canadensis
Beavers get busy
November 27, 2009
Beebalm
Monarda didyma
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Beechdrops
Epifagus virginiana
A curious fall plant
October 2, 2009
Belladonna
Atropa belladonna
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
Belted kingfishers
Ceryle alcyon
Belted Kingfishers Dive and Burrow
October 12, 2007
Birch, black
Betula lenta
Wintergreen under the snow
January 21, 2005
Birdfoot violet
Viola pedata
Native wild violets in wet and dry places
May 18, 2007
Bittersweet nightshade
Solanum dulcamara
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
Black locust
Robinia pseudoacacia
A pretty but prickly escaped shrub
May 29, 2009
Black swallowtail
Papilio polyxenes
From caterpillar to butterfly
July 27, 2007
Black swallowtail caterpillar
Papilio polyxenes
A caterpillar's life
August 10, 2007
Black-capped chickadee
Poecile atricapilla
Poecile atricapillus
State bird speaks
February 13, 2009
The famous red-breasted nuthatch
November 9, 2007
Bladderworts
Utricularia
Carnivorous floating flowers
August 24, 2007
Blue flag iris
Iris versicolor
Wild iris in the woods
June 11, 2004
Blue jay
Cyanocitta cristata
Blue Jays harvest acorns
October 14, 2011
Blue morpho
Morpho peleides
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
Blue-eyed grass
Sisyrinchium
Wild iris in the woods
June 11, 2004
Blue-spotted salamander
Ambystoma laterale
Special concern for blue-spotted salamanders
March 28, 2008
Visitors to our vernal pools
March 17, 2006
Blue-winged warbler
Vermivora pinus
The drama of nature’s changes
May 20, 2011
Blueberry (high bush)
Vaccinium corymbosum
Blooming blueberries
May 4, 2012
Blueberry (low bush)
Vaccinium angustifolium
Blooming blueberries
May 4, 2012
Bluebird
Sialia sialis
Winter bluebirds brighten Westborough
February 1, 2008
Bluebirds in Westborough
May 26, 2006
Bobolink
Dolichonyx oryzivorus
Bobolinks: Long distance travelers
June 18, 2010
Boneset
Eupatorium perfoliatum
Old-time bitter medicine
September 26, 2008
Bristly locust
Robinia hispida
A pretty but prickly escaped shrub
May 29, 2009
Broad-winged skipper
Poanes viator
Invasive phragmites and a native butterfly
September 25, 2015
Brown thrasher
Toxostoma rufum
The catbird in the catbird seat
June 29, 2007
Brown-headed cowbird
Molothrus ater
May brings yellow warblers to Westborough
May 23, 2008
The catbird in the catbird seat
June 29, 2007
Bruce spanworm
Operophtera bruceata
Moths in winter
December 18, 2009
Bryozoans
Pectinatella magnifica
The case of the mysterious jelly balls
September 21, 2007
Bullfrog
Lithobates catesbeianus
Rana catesbeiana
Bullfrogs in our ponds
September 7, 2007
Bumblebee
Bombus
Honeybees in winter
March 9, 2007
Butter-and-eggs
Linaria vulgaris
Butter-and-eggs for beauty, not breakfast
September 17, 2004
Butterfly bush
Buddleia davidii
Buddleja davidii
A most unusual moth in town
August 11, 2006
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Butterfly weed
Asclepias tuberosa
July is butterfly season
July 14, 2006
Canada goose
Branta canadensis
Canada geese overhead
December 9, 2005
Canada lily
Lilium canadense
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Canadian tiger swallowtail
Papilio canadensis
Tiger swallowtail butterflies
July 22, 2011
Cardinal
Cardinalis cardinalis
Cardinal’s song means spring is coming
February 4, 2011
Cardinal flower
Lobelia cardinalis
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Cardinal flower attracts hummingbirds, butterflies
July 22, 2005
Carolina hemlock
Tsuga caroliniana
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
Catawba rhododendron
Rhododendron catawbiense
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Catbird
Dumetella carolinensis
The catbird in the catbird seat
June 29, 2007
Cattail
Typha latifolia
Return of the red-wings signals spring
March 23, 2007
Invasion of the Purple Loosestrife
August 6, 2004
Cedar of Lebanon
Cedrus lebani
Westborough's Atlantic White Cedars
February 4, 2005
Cedar waxwing
Bombycilla cedrorum
Early birds get the dried fruit
March 3, 2006
Celandine
Chelidonium majus
Wildflower, weed, or invader?
May 9, 2008
Cellophane bee
Colletes inaequalis
Cellophane bees emerge from underground in early spring
April 8, 2016
Chain pickerel
Esox niger
Ice fishing flourishes on Westborough’s ponds
February 28, 2014
Checkerberry
Gaultheria procumbens
Wintergreen under the snow
January 21, 2005
Chestnut blight
Cryphonectria parasitica
Persistence of the American chestnut
October 16, 2015
Chickadee
Poecile atricapilla
The season for baby birds
June 12, 2009
Chicory
Cichorium intybus
Blue and edible chicory on the roadside
September 18, 2009
Chinese chestnut
Castanea mollissima
Persistence of the American chestnut
October 16, 2015
Chipmunk
Tamias striatus
Acorns and chipmunks
October 20, 2006
Chokecherry
Prunus
July is butterfly season
July 14, 2006
Christmas fern
Polystichum acrostichoides
Christmas fern in the woods
December 10, 2004
Cicada
Tibicen canicularis
Cicada-killer wasps and summer’s song
August 30, 2013
Cicada-killer wasp
Sphecius speciosus
Cicada-killer wasps and summer’s song
August 30, 2013
Cigar plant
Cuphea ignea
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Cinnamon fern
Osmunda cinnamomea
Big Ferns Unfurl
May 25, 2012
Closed gentian
Gentiana clausa
Flowers that never open
October 1, 2004
Coltsfoot
Tussilago farfara
What’s the first wildflower of spring?
April 9, 2010
Columbine
Aquilegia canadense
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Common evening primrose
Oenothera biennis
Evening blossoms in the day
September 22, 2006
Common merganser
Mergus merganser
Mergansers: December’s ducks
December 10, 2010
Cooper’s hawk
Accipiter cooperii
Watch for Cooper’s hawks
March 18, 2016
Coral hairstreak
Satyrium titus
July is butterfly season
July 14, 2006
coyote
Canis latrans var
Coyotes Are Nearby
November 4, 2016
Cypress vine
Ipomoea quamoclit
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Daisy
Chrysanthemum leucanthemum
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
Damselflies
Zygoptera
Dragons and damsels
July 18, 2008
Dark-eyed junco
Junco hyemalis
Westborough's tiny winter bird
February 23, 2007
Double-crested cormorant
Phalacrocorax auritus
Black birds on Mill Pond are double-crested cormorants
May 1, 2015
Downy goldenrod
Solidago puberula
A White Goldenrod
October 3, 2014
Downy rattlesnake-plantain
Goodyera pubescens
September's wild orchid
September 16, 2005
Tiny orchids of August
August 5, 2005
Downy woodpecker
Picoides pubescens
Woodpeckers in Westborough's Woods
January 26, 2007
Dragonflies
Anisoptera
Dragons and damsels
July 18, 2008
Dwarf ginseng
Panax trifolius
A dwarf in the woods
May 30, 2014
Earthworm
Lumbricus terrestris
Earth stirs in March
March 19, 2010
Eastern bluecurls
Trichostema dichotomum
The minty month of August
August 15, 2008
Eastern cottontail rabbit
Sylvilagus floridanus
The tale of the cottontail rabbit
June 23, 2006
Eastern hemlock
Tsuga canadensis
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
Eastern pine elfin
Callophrys niphon
Elfins are small brown butterflies of spring
May 17, 2013
Eastern red cedar
Juniperus virginiana
Early birds get the dried fruit
March 3, 2006
Westborough's Atlantic White Cedars
February 4, 2005
Eastern tailed blue
Everes comyntas
Butterfly disguises in late summer
September 4, 2009
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
Eastern tiger swallowtail
Papilio glaucus
Tiger swallowtail butterflies
July 22, 2011
Eastern white pine
Pinus strobus
Whose woods are these? A tribute to white pines
December 12, 2014
Eggplant
Solanum melongena
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
English sparrows
Passer domesticus
Bluebirds in Westborough
May 26, 2006
European rabbit
Oryctolagus cuniculus
The tale of the cottontail rabbit
June 23, 2006
European starlings
Sturnus vulgaris
Bluebirds in Westborough
May 26, 2006
European windflower
Anemone nemorosa
Watch for wildflowers in Westborough
April 25, 2008
Evergreen wood fern
Dryopteris intermedia
A lacy, evergreen fern in our woods
November 13, 2015
Fairy shrimp
Eubranchipus
At home in Westborough’s vernal pools
March 14, 2008
Fall cankerworm
Alsophila pometaria
Moths in winter
December 18, 2009
False turkey tail
Stereum ostrea
Turkey tail season
November 4, 2011
Fancy fern
Dryopteris intermedia
A lacy, evergreen fern in our woods
November 13, 2015
Fisher
Martes pennanti
Fishers make a comeback
November 1, 2013
Fly agaric
Amanita muscaria
Fall is mushroom season
October 15, 2004
Flying Squirrel
Glaucomys volans
Squirrel tales
February 18, 2005
Four-toed salamander
Hemidactylium scutatum
An ancient and useful moss
April 29, 2011
Foxglove
Digitalis purpurea
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Fragrant water-lily
Nymphaea odorata
Fragrant water-lilies linger on local ponds
September 12, 2008
Fuchsia
Fuchsia
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Fungus-root partnership
Mycorrhiza
Strange plants of summer
August 1, 2008
Garlic mustard
Alliaria petiolata
Pull out invasive garlic mustard
April 19, 2013
A new invasive in town
June 1, 2007
Garter snake
Thamnophis sirtalis
Westborough’s snakes are harmless
June 20, 2008
Gem-studded puffball
Lycoperdon perlatum
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Giant blue sage
Salvia guaranitica
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Giant puffball
Calvatia gigantea
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Giant swallowtail
Papilio cresphontes
Watch for this new butterfly
July 19, 2013
Golden-crowned kinglet
Regulus satrapa
Westborough's tiny winter bird
February 23, 2007
Golden-winged warbler
Vermivora chrysoptera
The drama of nature’s changes
May 20, 2011
Goldenrod
Solidago
Late-summer sneezing
August 20, 2004
Goldenrod spider
Misumena vatia
Late-summer sneezing
August 20, 2004
Goldfinch
Carduelis tristis
Goldfinches and summer's thistles
August 25, 2006
Grasshopper
Dissosteira carolina
Grasshopper season
August 22, 2014
Gray hairstreak
Strymon melinus
Seeing Small Butterflies
July 13, 2012
Gray squirrel
Sciurus carolinensis
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
A white squirrel sighting
July 28, 2006
Squirrel tales
February 18, 2005
Gray treefrog
Hyla versicolor
Listen for treefrogs
July 3, 2009
Great blue heron
Ardea herodias
Big Birds in white on our shores
September 1, 2011
An owl in the nest
April 1, 2005
Great blue herons
Ardea herodias
Great Blue Herons at Mill Pond
April 30, 2004
Great egret
Ardea alba
Big Birds in white on our shores
September 1, 2011
Great horned owl
Bubo virginianis
Bubo virginianus
Valentine's Day for Skunks
February 9, 2007
An owl in the nest
April 1, 2005
Great spangled fritillary
Speyeria cybele
Our earliest wild violet
May 4, 2007
Green darner dragonfly
Anax junius
Migrating dragonflies
October 10, 2008
Green frog
Rana clamitans
Bullfrogs in our ponds
September 7, 2007
Green heron
Butorides virescens
Fish-baiting green herons
September 30, 2005
Ground cedar
Diphasiastrum digitatum
Lycopodium digitatum
Ancient evergreens under the snow
February 17, 2006
Groundhog
Marmota monax
Spring begins in February
February 5, 2010
Groundnut
Apios americana
The edible groundnut
September 23, 2011
Gypsy moth
Lymantria dispar
Lymantria dispar dispar
What’s eating our trees?
July 15, 2016
Baltimore checkerspot butterflies and gypsy moths
July 24, 2015
Hairy woodpecker
Picoides villosus
Woodpeckers in Westborough's Woods
January 26, 2007
Hemlock woolly adelgid
Adelges tsugae
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
Henry’s elfin
Callophrys henrici
Elfins are small brown butterflies of spring
May 17, 2013
Hessel's hairstreak butterfly
Callophrys hesseli
Mitoura hesseli
Westborough's Atlantic White Cedars
February 4, 2005
Honeybee
Apis mellifera
Honeybees in winter
March 9, 2007
Hooded merganser
Lophodytes cucullatus
Wild ducks on our ponds
March 31, 2006
Horned bladderwort
Utricularia cornuta
Carnivorous floating flowers
August 24, 2007
Horse-chestnut
Aesculus hippo-castanaum
Persistence of the American chestnut
October 16, 2015
Horsetail
Equisetum arvense
Strange stems of April
April 17, 2009
House finch
Carpodacus mexicanus
House finches at the feeder
October 15, 2010
House sparrow
Passer domesticus
Watching house sparrows
February 19, 2016
Bluebirds in Westborough
May 26, 2006
Hummingbird
Archilochus colubrus
Cardinal flower attracts hummingbirds, butterflies
July 22, 2005
Hummingbird clearwing
Hemaris thysbe
A most unusual moth in town
August 11, 2006
Indian pink
Spigelia marilandica
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Indian-pipes
Monotropa uniflora
Strange plants of summer
August 1, 2008
Cardinal flower attracts hummingbirds, butterflies
July 22, 2005
Ghostly Indian-pipes by the path
July 23, 2004
Intermediate wood fern
Dryopteris intermedia
A lacy, evergreen fern in our woods
November 13, 2015
Interrupted fern
Osmunda claytoniana
Big Ferns Unfurl
May 25, 2012
Isabella tiger moth
Pyrrharctia isabella
Woolly bears and winter
January 20, 2006
Jack-in-the-pulpit
Arisaema triphyllum
Land of Swamps
May 28, 2004
Japanese beetle
Popillia japonica
An invasive rose
June 15, 2007
Jefferson salamander
Ambystoma jeffersonianum
Visitors to our vernal pools
March 17, 2006
Jelly ball animals
Pectinatella magnifica
The case of the mysterious jelly balls
September 21, 2007
Junco
Junco hyemalis
Enjoy the winter juncos
February 7, 2014
Katydid
family Tettigoniidae
Katydid songs of summer
August 26, 2016
Largemouth bass
Micropterus salmoides
Ice fishing flourishes on Westborough’s ponds
February 28, 2014
Leopard frog
Lithobates pipiens
Rana pipiens
Frogs at our feet
August 13, 2010
Lobster mushroom
Hypomyces lactifluorum
Lobster claws on the path
October 28, 2005
Loon
Gavia immer
Loons in Massachusetts
May 27, 2016
Mallard
Anas platyrhynchos
Return of the mallards
February 15, 2008
Make way for ducklings
June 9, 2006
Marbled salamander
Ambystoma opacum
Visitors to our vernal pools
March 17, 2006
Marsh blue violet
Viola cucullata
Native wild violets in wet and dry places
May 18, 2007
Marsh-marigold
Caltha palustris
Marsh-marigolds in our streams and swamps
April 20, 2007
Milkweed
Asclepias syriaca
July is butterfly season
July 14, 2006
Milkweed and butterflies in our meadows
July 8, 2005
Milkweed beetle
Tetraopes tetraophthalmus
Milkweed and butterflies in our meadows
July 8, 2005
Milkweed bug
Lygaeus kalmii
Milkweed and butterflies in our meadows
July 8, 2005
Mimosa
Albizia julibrissin
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Moccasin-flower
Cypripedium acaule
Westborough's Pink Lady's-Slippers
May 14, 2004
Monarch butterfly
Danaus plexippus
Look-alike butterflies
July 13, 2007
Milkweed and butterflies in our meadows
July 8, 2005
Monkey-flower
Mimulus ringens
Wet summer brings monkey-flowers
August 9, 2013
Moose
Alces alces
Moose in Westborough
October 7, 2016
Moss animals
Pectinatella magnifica
The case of the mysterious jelly balls
September 21, 2007
Mountain hemlock
Tsuga mertensiana
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
Mountain laurel
Kalmia latifolia
A sheepish laurel
June 10, 2005
Mourning cloak
Nymphalis antiopa
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
The first butterfly of spring
April 29, 2005
Time for pussy willows
March 5, 2005
Mourning dove
Zenaida macroura
The mourning dove's coo
March 18, 2005
Multiflora rose
Rosa multiflora
An invasive rose
June 15, 2007
Mushroom, destroying angel
Amanita bisporigera
Amanita virosa
Beware of the destroying angel in the woods
October 11, 2013
Muskrat
Ondatra zibethicus
Our diving muskrats
April 3, 2009
Mute swan
Cygnus olor
Lovely and controversial swans
November 10, 2006
New England cottontail rabbit
Sylvilagus transitionalis
The tale of the cottontail rabbit
June 23, 2006
Night light mushroom
Panellus stipticus
Green-glowing Mushrooms
December 2, 2016
Nodding ladies'-tresses
Spiranthes cernua
September's wild orchid
September 16, 2005
Nodding trillium
Trillium cernuum
Treasure-hunting for trilliums
June 6, 2008
Northern downy violet
Viola fimbriatula
Viola sagittata
Our earliest wild violet
May 4, 2007
Northern flicker
Colaptes auratus
Woodpeckers in Westborough's Woods
January 26, 2007
Northern mockingbird
Mimus polyglottos
The catbird in the catbird seat
June 29, 2007
Northern water snake
Nerodia sipedon
The Number 2 Snake in Town
October 24, 2014
Northern white cedar
Thuja occidentalis
Westborough's Atlantic White Cedars
February 4, 2005
Norway maple
Acer plantanoides
Think spring, think maples
April 10, 2015
Old man of the woods
Strobilomyces floccopus
Mushroom season brings colors & curiosities
September 14, 2012
Onion-bagel mushroom
Pholiota aurivella
Mushroom Season
September 16, 2016
Orange jewelweed
Impatiens capensis
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Jewelweed is ready to pop
September 3, 2004
Orange mushroom pimple
Hypomyces lactifluorum
Lobster claws on the path
October 28, 2005
Orange spotted Jewelweed
Impatiens capensis
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Oriental bittersweet
Celastrus orbiculatus
An invasive decoration
December 12, 2008
Osprey
Pandion haliaetus
Ospreys return to Mill Pond
April 11, 2008
An owl in the nest
April 1, 2005
Ostrich fern
Matteuccia struthiopteris
Big Ferns Unfurl
May 25, 2012
Ovenbird
Seiurus aurocapilla
The ovenbird’s mid-summer sound
August 14, 2015
Ox-eye daisy
Chrysanthemum leucanthemum
Leucanthemum vulgare
Daisy Days
July 22, 2016
Painted lady
Vanessa cardui
A good year for butterflies
May 28, 2010
Goldfinches and summer's thistles
August 25, 2006
Painted turtle
Chrysemys picta
Cardinal flower attracts hummingbirds, butterflies
July 22, 2005
Watch for painted turtles
July 9, 2004
Pale touch-me-not
Impatiens pallida
Jewelweed is ready to pop
September 3, 2004
Palm warbler
Dendroica palmarum
Palm warblers pass through
October 16, 2009
Paper birch
Betula papyrifera
The first butterfly of spring
April 29, 2005
Pasture puffball
Calvatia cyathiformis
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Pear-shaped puffball
Lycoperdon pyriforme
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Pearl crescent butterfly
Phyciodes tharos
Pearl crescent butterflies
July 4, 2008
Peppers
Capsicum
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
phoebe
Sayornis phoebe
Phoebes come early and stay late
November 14, 2014
Phragmites
Phragmites australis
Invasive phragmites and a native butterfly
September 25, 2015
Pickerel frog
Lithobates palustris
Frogs at our feet
August 13, 2010
Pickerel-weed
Pontederia cordata
Pickerel-weed grows in the shallows
August 3, 2012
Pigskin poison puffball
Scleroderma citrinum
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Pine grosbeak
Pinicola enucleator
Pine grosbeaks come to Westborough
February 8, 2013
Pine siskin
Carduelus pinus
Spinus pinus
Pine siskins visit Westborough this year
November 16, 2012
Pineapple sage
Salvia elegans
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Pineapple weed
Matricaria discoidea
The many senses of pineapple weed
June 6, 2011
Pinesap
Monotropa hypopithys
Strange plants of summer
August 1, 2008
Pink lady's-slipper
Cypripedium acaule
September's wild orchid
September 16, 2005
Westborough's Pink Lady's-Slippers
May 14, 2004
Pink turtlehead
Chelone lyonii
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Pipsessewa
Chimaphila umbellata
Ancient evergreens under the snow
February 17, 2006
Plantain
Plantago lanceolata
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Poison ivy
Toxicodendron radicans
Feasting on poison ivy
November 7, 2008
Pokeweed
Phytolacca americana
Pokeweed for the birds
September 24, 2010
Potato
Solanum tuberosum
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
Prairie warbler
Dendroica discolor
Setophaga discolor
Prairie warblers sing a catchy song
April 29, 2016
Pretzel slime mold
Hemitrichia serpula
Slime molds are odd sights in the woods
December 6, 2013
Primrose moth
Schinia florida
Pink moths?
September 12, 2014
Prince's pine
Chimaphila umbellata
Ancient evergreens under the snow
February 17, 2006
Princess pine
Dendrolycopodium obscurum
Lycopodium obscurum
Ancient evergreens under the snow
February 17, 2006
Purple bladderwort
Utricularia purpurea
Carnivorous floating flowers
August 24, 2007
Purple jewelweed
Impatiens glandulifera
Jewelweed is ready to pop
September 3, 2004
Purple loosestrife
Lythrum salicaria
Return of the red-wings signals spring
March 23, 2007
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
A most unusual moth in town
August 11, 2006
Invasion of the Purple Loosestrife
August 6, 2004
Purple loosestrife beetle
Galerucella calmariensis
Galerucella pusilla
A good beetle comes to town
August 21, 2009
Purple touch-me-not
Impatiens glandulifera
Jewelweed is ready to pop
September 3, 2004
Purple-spored puffball
Calvatia cyathiformis
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Pussy willow
Salix discolor
What’s the first wildflower of spring?
April 9, 2010
Time for pussy willows
March 5, 2005
Queen Anne's lace
Daucus carota
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
Rabbit’s foot clover
Trifolium arvense
Rabbit’s foot clover is fun for kids
August 24, 2012
Raccoon
Procyon lotor
Raccoons share our natural environment
November 5, 2010
Ragweed
Ambrosia artemisiifolia
Late-summer sneezing
August 20, 2004
Red buckeye
Aesculus pavia
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Red fox
Vulpes vulpes
Foxy neighbors
May 15, 2009
Red maple
Acer rubrum
Think spring, think maples
April 10, 2015
Red Squirrel
Tamiasciurus hudsonicus
Smart and feisty red squirrels
October 24, 2008
Squirrel tales
February 18, 2005
Red-bellied woodpecker
Melanerpes carolinus
Woodpeckers in Westborough's Woods
January 26, 2007
Red-breasted nuthatch
Sitta canadensis
Watch for wildflowers in Westborough
April 25, 2008
The famous red-breasted nuthatch
November 9, 2007
Nuthatches in the winter
February 3, 2006
Red-spotted newt
Notophthalmus viridescens viridescens
A surprising salamander
August 29, 2008
Red-tailed hawk
Buteo jamaicensis
Valentine's Day for Skunks
February 9, 2007
Red-tailed hawks overhead
November 12, 2004
Red-winged blackbird
Agelaius phoeniceus
Return of the red-wings signals spring
March 23, 2007
Redback salamander
Plethodon cinereus
WCLT’s wildlife sightings page
March 18, 2011
Redpoll
Acanthis flammea
Visiting redpolls lingering in town
March 29, 2013
Ribbon snake
Thamnophis sauritus
Westborough’s snakes are harmless
June 20, 2008
Ring-billed gull
Larus delawarensis
What are seagulls doing in town?
March 8, 2013
Ring-necked duck
Aythya collaris
Ring-necked ducks diving in our ponds
December 4, 2015
Rose of Sharon
Hibiscus syriacus
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Rosy maple moth
Dryocampa rubicunda
Pink moths?
September 12, 2014
Royal fern
Osmunda regalis
Big Ferns Unfurl
May 25, 2012
Ruby-crowned kinglet
Regulus calendula
Westborough's tiny winter bird
February 23, 2007
Ruby-throated hummingbird
Archilochus colubris
Nesting Hummingbirds
July 11, 2014
Westborough's tiny winter bird
February 23, 2007
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Rue anemone
Thalictrum thalictroides
Watch for wildflowers in Westborough
April 25, 2008
Ruffed grouse
Bonasa umbellus
June is a month for baby birds
June 15, 2012
Scarlet tanager
Piranga olivacea
Scarlet tanagers in our forests
June 12, 2015
Screech owl
Megascops asio
Otus asio
Who’s out there?
February 26, 2010
Shaggy mane mushroom
Coprinus comatus
From shaggy mane to inky cap
October 6, 2006
Sharp-shinned hawk
Accipiter striatus
Watch for Cooper’s hawks
March 18, 2016
Sheep-laurel
Kalmia angustifolia
A sheepish laurel
June 10, 2005
Shrimp plant
Justicia brandegeana
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Shrub verbena
Lantana camara
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Silktree
Albizia julibrissin
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Silver maple
Acer saccharinum
Think spring, think maples
April 10, 2015
Silverrod
Solidago bicolor
A White Goldenrod
October 3, 2014
Silvery blue
Glaucopsyche lygdamus
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
Skull-shaped puffball
Calvatia craniformis
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Skunk
Mephitis mephitis
Valentine's Day for Skunks
February 9, 2007
Skunk cabbage
Symplocarpus foetidus
What’s the first wildflower of spring?
April 9, 2010
Swamps in bloom
April 15, 2005
Snapping turtle
Chelydra serpentina
Snapper Sightings in Westborough
August 7, 2009
Watch for painted turtles
July 9, 2004
Song sparrow
Melospiza melodia
Song sparrow singing celebrates spring
April 18, 2014
Sora
Porzana carolina
Secretive marsh birds
June 28, 2013
Spadefoot toad
Scaphiopus holbrookii holbrookii
Visitors to our vernal pools
March 17, 2006
Sphagnum moss
Sphagnum
An ancient and useful moss
April 29, 2011
Spicebush
Lindera benzoin
Good things from spicebush
April 28, 2006
Spicebush swallowtail
Papilio troilus
Pterourus troilus
Good things from spicebush
April 28, 2006
Spotted Joe-Pye-weed
Eupatorium maculatum
Spotted Joe-Pye-weed in purple landscapes
September 2, 2005
Spotted salamander
Ambystoma maculatum
Visitors to our vernal pools
March 17, 2006
Spotted sandpiper
Actitis macularia
A Mill Pond bird is Mr. Mom
July 24, 2009
Spotted touch-me-not
Impatiens capensis
Jewelweed is ready to pop
September 3, 2004
Spreading dogbane
Apocynum androsaemifolium
Candy-cane stripes visible in the summertime
July 23, 2010
Spring azure
Celastrina ladon
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
Spring peeper
Hyla crucifer
Pseudacris crucifer
Tiny frogs herald springtime
April 14, 2006
Squawroot
Conopholis americana
Pine cone, corn cob, or parasitic plant?
May 22, 2015
St. Johnswort
Hypericum perforatum
Cardinal flower attracts hummingbirds, butterflies
July 22, 2005
St. Johnswort on the roadside
June 25, 2004
Starflower
Trientalis borealis
Spot the seven-pointed stars of starflower
May 9, 2014
Starling
Sturnus vulgaris
The bird we love to hate
February 27, 2009
Striped hairstreak
Satyrium liparops
Seeing Small Butterflies
July 13, 2012
Sugar maple
Acer saccharum
Think spring, think maples
April 10, 2015
Summer azure
Celastrina ladon neglecta
Celastrina neglecta
Blue butterfly days
April 6, 2007
Swollen bladderwort
Utricularia inflata
Carnivorous floating flowers
August 24, 2007
Tiger beetle, common shore
Cicindela repanda
Spot tiger beetles on Westborough trails
September 20, 2013
Tiger beetle, six-spotted
Cicindela sexguttata
Spot tiger beetles on Westborough trails
September 20, 2013
Tobacco
Nicotiana
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
Tobacco hornworm
Manduca sexta
A most unusual moth in town
August 11, 2006
Tomato
Lycopersicum esculentum
Not-So-Deadly Nightshade
June 24, 2005
Tomato hornworm
Manduca quinquemaculata
A most unusual moth in town
August 11, 2006
Towhee
Pipilo erythrophthalmus
A bird in decline
September 3, 2010
Tree swallow
Tachycineta bicolor
Eating on the wing
May 1, 2009
Trumpet creeper
Campsis radicans
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Trumpet honeysuckle
Lonicera sempervirens
Summer hummers
August 19, 2005
Tufted titmouse
Baeolophus bicolor
Parus bicolor
How birds stay warm on a cold winter’s day
February 25, 2011
Turkey tail
Trametes versicolor
Turkey tail season
November 4, 2011
Turkey vulture
Cathartes aura
Airborne clean-up crew returns
April 8, 2011
Turtlehead
Chelone glabra
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Vase puffball
Calvatia cyathiformis
Puffballs in the grass
October 14, 2005
Viburnums
Viburnum
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
Viceroy
Basilarchia archippus
Limenitis archippus
Butterfly disguises in late summer
September 4, 2009
Look-alike butterflies
July 13, 2007
Milkweed and butterflies in our meadows
July 8, 2005
Time for pussy willows
March 5, 2005
Virginia creeper
Parthenocissus quinquefolia
Virginia creeper and other autumn reds
October 5, 2012
Virginia rail
Rallus limicola
Secretive marsh birds
June 28, 2013
Viscid violet cort
Cortinarius iodes
Mushroom season brings colors & curiosities
September 14, 2012
Western bluecurls
Trichostema lanceolatum
The minty month of August
August 15, 2008
Western hemlock
Tsuga heterophylla
Alien Invader Targets Our Hemlocks
December 13, 2006
White ash
Fraxinus americana
Turtlehead and butterflies
September 8, 2006
White-breasted nuthatch
Sitta carolinensis
The famous red-breasted nuthatch
November 9, 2007
Nuthatches in the winter
February 3, 2006
White-tailed deer
Odocoileus virginianus
Winter marks return of deer-watching season
December 14, 2007
Wild cherry
Prunus
July is butterfly season
July 14, 2006
Wild columbine
Aquilegia canadensis
Wild columbine spring
June 20, 2014
Wild geranium
Geranium maculatum
Wild geraniums are native to the area
May 27, 2005
Wild mint
Mentha arvensis
The minty month of August
August 15, 2008
Wild oats
Uvularia sessilifolia
Treasure-hunting for spring wildflowers
April 13, 2012
Wild plum
Prunus
July is butterfly season
July 14, 2006
Wild turkey
Meleagris gallopavo
It's time to talk turkey
November 18, 2005
Willow
Salix
The first butterfly of spring
April 29, 2005
Windflower
Anemone quinquefolia
Watch for wildflowers in Westborough
April 25, 2008
Winter moth
Operophtera brumata
Moths in winter
December 18, 2009
Winterberry
Ilex verticillata
Winterberry in our wetlands
November 26, 2004
Witch-hazel
Hamamelis virginiana
Witch-hazel flowers for Halloween
October 29, 2004
Wolf’s milk slime
Lycogala epidendrum
Slime molds are odd sights in the woods
December 6, 2013
Wood duck
Aix sponsa
Make way for ducklings
June 9, 2006
Wild ducks on our ponds
March 31, 2006
Wood frog
Rana sylvatica
Visitors to our vernal pools
March 17, 2006
Signs of spring: Wood frogs and vernal pools
April 16, 2004
Wood thrush
Hylocichla mustelina
Sounds of summertime: Wood thrush
July 3, 2015
Wood-pewee
Contopus virens
The wood-pewee’s lasting song
September 4, 2015
Woolly bear caterpillar
Pyrrharctia isabella
Woolly bears and winter
January 20, 2006
Yellow flag iris
Iris pseudacorus
Wild iris in the woods
June 11, 2004
Yellow iris
Iris pseudacorus
Yellow iris: Attractive but invasive
June 7, 2013
Yellow jewelweed
Impatiens pallida
Jewelweed is ready to pop
September 3, 2004
Yellow warbler
Dendroica petechia
May brings yellow warblers to Westborough
May 23, 2008
Yellow-rumped warbler
Dendroica coronata
Feasting on poison ivy
November 7, 2008
(A Nature Notes quiz)
What’s my name? Take the Nature Notes quiz
January 30, 2015
Who am I? Take the Nature Notes quiz (2013)
January 17, 2014
Try the annual Nature Notes quiz (2012)
January 18, 2013
Quiz Yourself on Nature (2011)
January 13, 2012
Take the annual nature quiz (2010)
January 14, 2011
Quiz Yourself on Nature (2009)
January 15, 2010
Quiz Yourself on Nature (2008)
January 16, 2009
Prepare to notice nature in 2008 by taking the 2007 Nature Notes quiz
January 18, 2008
Think you know nature? (2006)
January 12, 2007
Think you know nature? (2005)
January 6, 2006
Think you know nature? (2004)
January 7, 2005
(Astronomy)
Looking Up
March 20, 2009
(Autumn leaf colors)
Virginia creeper and other autumn reds
October 5, 2012
(Baby birds)
The season for baby birds
June 12, 2009
(Books)
Book gifts for nature lovers
December 7, 2012
(Earthquakes)
Earthquakes in New England
December 9, 2011
(Geology of Westborough)
A mighty collision and much glaciation
May 12, 2006
(Gibbons 7th-graders use Nature Notes)
Nature Notes in the classroom
May 13, 2005
(Ice)
Ice is nice
January 30, 2009
(Mushrooms)
Hunting for mushrooms with an expert
October 26, 2012
(Nature Notes quiz)
Review your nature knowledge – Nature Notes quiz 2016
January 27, 2017
Name the wildlife – Nature Notes quiz
January 15, 2016
(Physical environment)
Moon over Westborough
February 29, 2008
(Wildlife)
Good tips from a wildlife veterinarian
February 20, 2015

Westborough Community Land Trust, PO Box 838, Westborough , MA 01581
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