Wild Outside Your Window: Exploring Nature Near at Hand

Overview

What could be better than watching the natural world out your window or on your television? Going out and experiencing it firsthand. In these fifty essays, acclaimed nature and science writer Sy Montgomery takes her readers on a season-by-season tour of the wilderness that is often as close as the backyard. Sy invites — almost dares — readers to follow her and form hands-on relationships with the plants, animals, birds, and even the insects that share space with people. These essays, most of which originally ...

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The Wild Out Your Window

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Overview

What could be better than watching the natural world out your window or on your television? Going out and experiencing it firsthand. In these fifty essays, acclaimed nature and science writer Sy Montgomery takes her readers on a season-by-season tour of the wilderness that is often as close as the backyard. Sy invites — almost dares — readers to follow her and form hands-on relationships with the plants, animals, birds, and even the insects that share space with people. These essays, most of which originally appeared in Sy's Boston Globe column Nature Journal, are by turns enlightening, entertaining, sometimes amusing, and always absorbing and informative. Filled with natural history and lore, the essays urge readers to appreciate what they find around them.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Nothing is commonplace about nature-even in your own backyard. It is full of sex, violence, intrigue, and mystery. Montgomery, a regular guest on National Public Radio's Living on Earth and author of Search for the Golden Moon Bear (reviewed above), offers 49 essays that examine nature in New England, from carnivorous plants to birds that impale their prey to the wonders of migration. The pieces, most of which were first published in Montgomery's Boston Globe column, "Nature's Journal," are short and entertaining, aimed at catching the reader's eye. But this is not simply popular science. Montgomery cites fascinating studies and quotes scientists searching for answers to these natural mysteries. Although most of the essays discuss a particular animal or plant, some explore habitats, such as vernal ponds, or the microscopic life among sand grains. Others explain events such as bird irruptions, the effects of a sparse acorn year, and what happens to bugs during the winter. Everyone will learn something new from these delightful essays. Highly recommended for public libraries.-Maureen J. Delaney-Lehman, Lake Superior State Univ. Lib., Sault Ste. Marie, MI Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780892725755
  • Publisher: Down East Books
  • Publication date: 8/28/2002
  • Pages: 250
  • Product dimensions: 6.09 (w) x 9.12 (h) x 0.71 (d)

Meet the Author

Sy Montgomery
Sy Montgomery
Known for her books that illuminate the wonders of nature for both children and adults, Sy Montgomery "is a modern miracle," says Book magazine, "bawdy, brave, inventive, prophetic, hellbent on loving this planet."

Good To Know

In our exclusive interview with Montgomery, she revealed a few fun anecdotes:

"My companion pig, Christopher Hogwood, age 12, lost 60 pounds on his new diet and now weighs in at a trim 690 pounds."

"My first known act of Eco-Conscience: I was sent home from kindergarten for biting a little boy who had pulled the legs off a daddy longlegs. I would do it again today."

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    1. Hometown:
      Hancock, New Hampshire
    1. Date of Birth:
      February 7, 1958
    2. Place of Birth:
      Frankfurt, Germany
    1. Education:
      Syracuse University: B.A., Newhouse School of Public Communications, 1979; B.A., College of Arts and Sciences, 1979

Table of Contents

Introduction 9
Spring
Moss 13
Crazy as a March Hare 17
Vernal Pools 22
Flowers That Stink 26
Salamander Rains 30
The Little Gentleman in Black Velvet 34
Woodpecking 39
Asian Plant Twins 44
Voles 48
Vultures 51
Plants That Eat Animals 55
Summer
The Watchable Woodchuck 63
Monsters at the Pond 67
Alpine Wildflowers 71
A River Walk on Cobble and Sandbar 75
Lawn Grass 79
Wild Berries 84
Hitchhiking the Gulf Stream 88
Disappearing Bees 92
Plants' Healing Poisons 97
The World Between Sand Grains 101
Letting the Coyote Stay Wild 105
The Habitat of the Water Lily 110
The Startling Beauty of Underwing Moths 114
Autumn
Hatchling Snappers 121
Milkweed 125
Mysteries of the Monarch's Migration 129
Voices of Courage in the Night 137
Swarming Ladybugs 141
Effects of a Sparse Acorn Year 145
How Migrating Birds Change Their Lives 149
Migrating North--To Stay 153
Bucks in Love 157
Mammals on the Move 162
Tracking the Vanished Glacier 169
How Bluejays Replanted Northern Oak Forests 173
Winter
Bird Irruptions 181
Yikes! ... Shrikes! 185
Otters 189
The Not-So-Private Life of Pigeons 193
Canned Wildlife 197
Where Do Bugs Go in Winter? 201
Ice Storm 205
Fishers Stage a Comeback 209
Holly's Holy Heritage 213
Ravens 217
Ermine 223
Of Mice, Moths, and Men 228
Animals That Aren't 233
Selected Bibliography 239
Index 243
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