A Message from Our President
We welcome the return of summer and all the incredible outdoor opportunities it brings, including the familiar (beach day!), the new (green concert), or the simply delightful (spotting a turtle or a dragonfly on the wing).
While we are out enjoying all that the season brings, it’s also wonderful to take a moment to reflect on the awesomeness of nature—and our collective responsibility to take care of our planet.
For instance, next time you head for the shore, keep in mind that we share the sands with more than just other beachgoers. Vulnerable shorebird species including Piping Plovers need all the help they can get, and “Seas the Day and Go to the Beach!” (page 5) provides a guide on how to do our part— and support Mass Audubon’s Coastal Waterbirds Program, which serves as a model for shorebird conservation around the world.
Summer also is prime turtle-watching season, and more than a dozen freshwater and saltwater species spend time in the Bay State. But six native species are now under some level of state and/or federal protection. Check out “Come Out of Your Shell” (page 10) to learn more about these remarkable reptiles, including about Wellfleet Bay’s work on behalf of Diamondback Terrapins and what we all can do to help.
Many people who observe wildlife (including turtles) in the wild come upon them while on a hike. For first-timers and even experienced backpackers, compiling a safety checklist can be the most helpful task one completes before heading outdoors. Be sure to review our tips in “Preparing for Your Next Outdoor Adventure” (page 8) before you head out on a relaxing amble or an invigorating daylong exploration at one of our wildlife sanctuaries.
And what better way to celebrate summer than with a bevy of programs, from kayaking at moonrise to butterfly festivals to an outdoor concert. The latter, Arcadia’s Folk Fest in Easthampton and Northampton, not only brings together world-class music, it also teaches about sustainability efforts in real time. See how in By the Numbers (page 3).
So after you read the stories in this issue, go and make your own connections with nature. I hope I run into you on the trails, looking for turtles. Explore, enjoy, and marvel in all that nature provides. Have a great summer!
— David J. O’Neill