Explore—Summer 2020

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Cover of "Explore" Summer 2020 issue (Semi-palmated Plover at Westport River)
Semi-palmated Plover at Westport River

A Message from Our New President

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Wild Islands

Dotting the length of the Massachusetts coast, the islands Mass Audubon protects are sanctuaries in every sense of the word. Get to know a few of the islands that you can explore by land or by sea.

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Nature & Mindfulness for Well-being

Science supports what we intuitively feel—nature is good for us. There are numerous ways that nature supports our well-being, directly and indirectly. Here are some simple practices you can try at home or a natural area near you.

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The Future Is in Our Lands

Protecting land is one of the most tangible and powerful solutions to combating climate change. This is why Mass Audubon is launching an ambitious campaign to protect 4,000 ecologically significant and resilient acres in Massachusetts. And you can help.

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In Your Words: Robert "Otter" Brown

Mass Audubon has always held a special place in Robert Brown's heart since meeting his wife at Wildwood in 1976. After retiring from a public teaching career in 2015, "Otter" has become a fixture at Oak Knoll Wildlife Sanctuary in Attleboro.

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By the Numbers: Monarch Butterflies

Monarchs are a beloved species among insects, but their population is in serious decline. Learn more about these beauties and what you can do to help them survive. 

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Outdoor Almanac

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Young Explorers: Beat the Heat

Summer is heating up, and that means everybody's looking for ways to cool down—including nature! Find out how plants and animals keep their cool and why it's so hot in the first place.

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→ Web exclusive! Discover some fun experiments you can do using the sun, including instructions for making your own solar cooker!

A Message to Our Members

As we went to print with this issue of Explore, we were still grappling with the effects of COVID-19. The past few months have been incredibly difficult. But in all the darkness, there has also been light. We've seen an outpouring of support, created a library of engaging videos, and adapted Bird-a-thon to "Bird-at-home-a-thon." We are carefully making progress on a number of habitat restoration projects and even ran a Virtual April Vacation Week.

We're eagerly looking forward to a time when life is back to normal, but since we can't predict the future, we chose not to include our normal program listings in this issue. To see if programs are running (or if they have gone virtual), please visit massaudubon.org/programs.

And we are happy to share that many of our trails are safely back open. Find out where and how to visit at massaudubon.org/covid19. Thank you for hanging in there with us—we hope you find joy and inspiration in this issue and in all your outdoor adventures!