Animals Unleashed at Magazine Beach

Image © Bimal Nepal,

Several animal celebrities of the Cambridge Wildlife Puppetry Project (CWPP), whose activities are supported by the Cambridge Arts Council and the Massachusetts Cultural Council this year, visited picnicking families and others at Magazine Beach Park Friday for a Walk/Ride Day celebration. Stay tuned for the CWPP’s four-day Fly, Buzz, and Honk! wildlife festival, August 7–10, 2017, every day from 10:00 to 12:00 in Riverside Press Park. Art and games and performances at the festival highlight the species that live in our city.

Saturday’s Moth: National Moth Week 2017

Common Looper Moth (Autographa precationis), photographed in Cambridge. Copyright (c) by Mark Rosenstein.
We continue our celebration of National Moth Week. All the images we’ve posted this week are of moths that live in Cambridge, and today’s Common Looper Moth is no exception.

Through Sunday, July 30th, you can see beautiful moths from near and far by searching the hashtag #nationalmothweek on Instagram and elsewhere—or better yet, by heading outdoors.

Thursday’s Moth: National Moth Week 2017

Grape Plume Moth, Geina periscelidactylus, photographed at Alewife Reservation, Cambridge. Photo (c) Mike Mulqueen. Used by permission.

Moths come in a variety of shapes, as this plume moth demonstrates. It’s National Moth Week. Find your own moth!  Here’s a guide  to attracting and identifying moths…and having a “mothing” event.

Wednesday’s Moth: National Moth Week 2017

(c) Tom Murray

Our National Moth Week species of the day is shown here in its caterpillar form. Meet the Goldenrod Hooded Owlet (Cucullia asteroides)!

The closest public event during National Moth Week to our city is at the South Shore Nature Center, this afternoon (Wed. July 27th). But check out this guide to finding moths.

All of our moth images this week are photographs shot in Cambridge. The image here was photographed at Fresh Pond Reservation by Tom Murray, author of Insects of New England and New York.

When you’re out looking for moths this week, include caterpillars. You can post a photo of it on or and ask for identification help.

Name that handhold!

Here’s a preview of my annual Greater Boston guessing game for kids during Screen-Free Week. Yes, you’re looking at a screen right now. But consider printing it or, if you’re on your smartphone to “scavenge” these secret places, think of all the adventures without a screen these clues will lead you to!

Each of these images is of a “handhold”  (something you can grab) on a piece of playground equipment (or other climbable object) in Cambridge, Mass., in an “open space.” Most, but not all, are from parks and playgrounds. Ready to play?

20140418-111104.jpg Name that handhold! (Let’s call this one Mystery Park Number One). Need a hint? Click here to see a natural object and something made by a human in the same location. Did that help?



Now name that one. this is Mystery Park Number Two. Need a hint? Click here to see a natural object and something made by a human in the same location.











Below is the handhold clue in Mystery Park Number Three. Remember, all of these are in Cambridge, Massachusetts!












Need a hint to figure out where Mystery Park Number Three is? Click here for a hint! 


And here is Number Four! How are you doing so far?

IMG_8047Here are some more clues to help you figure out which park in Cambridge is Mystery Park Number Four.





Honk! Honk! The parade is almost here!

Honk! Honk! The parade is almost here!

Wandering Gliders (dragonflies), Blue-Fronted Dancers (damselflies), pond algae (hand puppets), two Great Blue Herons and a gaggle of other animals will muster at the 8th annual Honk! Parade from Davis Square, Somerville, to Harvard Square, Cambridge, this Sunday. Trees also play a role in our party at Honk!
Brought to you by Neighbors and Neighboring Schools of Fresh Pond Reservation.
Tune in here again for the HONK!down to Sunday’s revelries!

Exploring the Urban Outdoors in Cambridge, Mass.: Events

 BOTANY WALK, April 26, 1 p.m.

Botanist Walter Kittredge is conducting a region-wide herbarium project to bring attention to the local New England flora, its presence and value, and is looking closely at vegetation at Alewife Reservation. Walter is Senior Curatorial Assistant at the Harvard University Herbaria, a world-wide research collection of over 5 million dried plant specimens.Participants will meet at the Alewife Brook parking lot at Cambridge Discovery Park at 100 Acorn Park Drive in Cambridge. Sponsored by Friends of Alewife Reservation. (usual time for this monthly event, beginning in June, will be the First Friday of the Month, 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm)

Call (617) 415-1884 for more information.


Maynard Ecology Center, lower level of Neville Place
650 Concord Avenue
When you and your dog visit Fresh Pond Reservation, your dog is probably far more aware than you are that the Reservation is the home of coyotes, skunks, raccoons, opossums, and many smaller mammals. Sightings of wild animals, especially coyotes, are increasing and have raised concerns about what we should do when we encounter these critters. John Maguranis is the Belmont Animal Control Officer and the Massachusetts representative for Project Coyote ( He will share with us his knowledge and experiences, tell us about coyote behavior, and instruct us on pet and human safety.  After the formal presentation, we’ll walk outside (weather permitting) to look for coyote tracks. Please register. You will receive important information on parking after you register. E-mail Elizabeth Wylde at or call 617- 349-6489 and leave your name and phone number.



Join Anne Marie Lambert for a guided walk through Alewife Reservation with Poet Richard Cambridge and Frederick Law Olmstead re-enactor Gerald Wright.  Sponsored by Friends of Alewife Reservation and the Cambridge Citizens Forum.  Participants will meet at the Alewife Brook parking lot at Cambridge Discovery Park at 100 Acorn Park Drive in Cambridge. Families welcome. Call (617) 415-1884 for more information.


Nick Woebske and Galen Mook lead a bike tour at dusk around the perimeter of the Alewife Reservation.  Edible plant expert David Craft will educate riders on the vast amount of edible plants in the area at periodic stops.  Sponsored by the Friends of Alewife Reservation. Participants will meet at the at the passenger pickup of the AlewifeT-stop in Cambridge. Visit the Friends of Alewife Reservation’s site for updated information or call (617) 415-1884.