HCT News

Ursa Major and North Star

Self-Guided Night Sky Tour: August 26, 2020

August 26, 2020

Steps for your Night Sky Tour First, to orient yourself, download the August Evening Sky Map by clicking here. You will want to have the direction that you are facing at the bottom of the map. Find a location away from streetlights and as open to the horizons as possible. To read the sky map,…

Common tern feeding chick

Discovering Migratory Shorebirds

August 18, 2020

Story by Tyler Maikath Photos by Sarah E. Devlin Starting in late July, the breeding shorebirds of the treeless Arctic tundra begin streaming south fanning out across North America. The wading birds characterized as shorebirds are a diverse group of species in the order Charadriiformes, and hundreds of thousands of these birds migrate along Cape…

Box Turtle

Tracking the Secretive Box Turtle

July 25, 2020

Story by Susanna Graham Pye Tracking turtles isn’t as easy as one might think, but HCT volunteer Michael Musnick, a passionate amateur herpetologist, is doing his best.  Holding an antenna and receiver, Musnick sets off down one of the grassy trails leading from the parking lot of Harwich Conservation Trust’s (HCT) Robert F. Smith Cold…

Milky Way

Self-Guided Summer Night Sky Tour: July 21, 2020

July 21, 2020

Self-Guided Steps for your Night Sky Tour First, to orient yourself, download the July Evening Sky Map by clicking here. You will want to have the direction that you are facing at the bottom of the map. Find a location away from streetlights and as open to the horizons as possible. To read the sky…

Goldfinch

Summer Nesters: Cedar Waxwings & Goldfinches

July 17, 2020

In the fields we let them have- in the fields we don’t want yet- where thistles rise out of the marshlands of spring, and spring open- each bud a settlement of riches- a coin of reddish fire- the finches wait for midsummer, for the long days, for the brass heat, for the seeds to begin…

Muddy Creek Headwaters meadow by Michael Lach

New Trail Open at Muddy Creek Headwaters Preserve

June 26, 2020

The walking trail is now open at HCT’s 17-acre Muddy Creek Headwaters Preserve! The new conservation destination on Church Street in East Harwich offers scenic vistas of a wildflower meadow in full bloom nestled within a forested valley that borders 1,400 feet of shoreline along Muddy Creek flowing into Pleasant Bay.  The trail length is…

Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane Visits Harwich Port

June 19, 2020

One morning last week, Nan Poor (a Trustee of the Harwich Conservation Trust) looked out her window into her yard next to the HCT Robert F. Smith Cold Brook Preserve’s wetlands and walking paths. She has several bird feeding stations at her home. Among the visitors, there are often mourning doves eating seed on the…

Piping Plover chick by Janet DiMattia

Piping Plover Conservation

June 11, 2020

“But if I were required to name a sound the remembrance of which most perfectly revives the impression which the beach has made, it would be the dreary peep of the piping plover which haunts there. Their voices, too, are heard as a fugacious part in the dirge which is ever played along the shore…

Rainbow sky by Gerry Beetham

Welcome to Your Cape Cod Open Space

June 6, 2020

It’s been waiting for you, just sitting there quietly minding its own business of filtering water, growing trees and plants and sheltering wildlife. Waiting for a time in your life when you needed it most.  When you could not visit friends and family at their homes.  When your only choices were to remain inside 24/7,…

Box-turtle - Photo by Sally Urbano

HCT Welcomes Box Turtle Sightings

May 15, 2020

The nonprofit Harwich Conservation Trust (HCT) is interested in receiving word about Harwich box turtle sightings. As the weather warms, you may see an Eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina) on your local travels and walks. Learning about the locations of local sightings helps HCT understand box turtle presence relative to conservation lands and potential areas…

night sky stars

Self-Guided Night Sky Tour: May 12, 2020

May 12, 2020

On behalf of Harwich Conservation Trust (HCT) and HCT volunteer astronomer Michael Payne, welcome to your very own backyard self-guided Spring Night Sky Tour. We’ve been watching the daily forecast for clear skies and tonight’s night sky viewing looks promising with cloud cover diminishing after 8:00 p.m. Usually we offer this celestial experience in person,…

Atlantic white cedars by Gerry Beetham

Traveling Back in Time with Atlantic White Cedars

May 1, 2020

An Atlantic white cedar swamp is a mysterious place of mossy hummocks rambling around the roots of dignified spires stretching skyward. If you’re unfamiliar with these fascinating wetland communities, picture towering cedars casting deep shade on the boggy, tumbled terra firma below. In a typical year, standing water is present in hollows for more than…