Maine: An Encyclopedia
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Ecology

Temperature Normals

by the month for forty-nine locations in Maine, one aspect of the climate, are calculated by taking the mean (average) of the maximum and minimum temperatures for a location, in a given month, over the thirty-year period. “Normal” temperatures are … Continue reading

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Tree Swallow

Tree Swallow at the Viles Arboretum (2002)

remains in Maine, along the coast, near freshwater ponds, and in agricultural fields, during the summer.  Thereafter, as with many other birds, it migrates to to southern coastal states, Mexico and Central America. This one apparently decided to take up … Continue reading

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Tufted Titmouse

Tufted Titmouse

is a bird found in the southern half of Maine year-round.  Nationally, its range is essentially east of the Mississippi River. Slate gray with a white belly and a rusty area below the wings, the male, female and young Titmouse … Continue reading

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Turkeys

From an article by George Matula Wildlife Biologist, Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Physical Characteristics The Wild Turkey is North America’s largest upland game bird. Average adult hens weigh between 8 – 12 lb. and adult toms (males) between … Continue reading

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Turtles

Maine is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including eight species of turtles, according to the Maine Herpetological Society. Several are considered common (widespread and not in danger): Eastern Painted, Midland Painted, Northern Snapping, and Musk turtles. Some are … Continue reading

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Vinalhaven Island

Carver

The island town is home to two nature preserves, both managed by the Nature Conservancy. See photos. Granite quarrying was an important industry in the 19th and early 20th centuries, both on the main island and on nearby Hurricane Island, which is in the town of Vinalhaven. Now a community of summer residents and Maine residents, it is accessible by the State Ferry Service, which provides transportation, for passengers and vehicles, to and from Rockland. Continue reading

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Waldo County Nature Preserves

Carlton Pond Waterfowl Production Area.  The area is a 1,055-acre impounded wetland located in the town of Troy in Waldo County.  The area was acquired by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1966 to protect the waterfowl and other … Continue reading

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Washington County Nature Preserves

The Trail in the Edmunds Division, Moosehorn Refuge (2004)

Commissary Point. With over two miles of undeveloped, scenic views, highly productive shorefront and wildlife habitat along Cobscook Bay, the Point includes 200 acres plus a 50-acre easement. It lies in Trescott Township across Whiting Bay from Tide Mill Farm … Continue reading

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Weather

Ice Storm, 1998, in Sherman

in Maine is famously varied and changeable, and at times, severe. The coast, moderated by the ocean, often has local weather far different from that in the western mountains or the expanses of Aroostook County. Adding to the complexity, global … Continue reading

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Weather, Severe Events

Blizzards, floods and hurricanes are occasional weather events, but often sudden and severe in Maine. This is a chronicle of some of the most significant events. Blizzards November 26, 1898 was the first day of the two-day Portland Gale, a … Continue reading

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Wildlife

Maine has an abundance of wildlife in its inland areas. The State’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife manages many species. Throughout the state, nature preserves provide opportunities to protect and to view wild animals. Here are some links to … Continue reading

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Willets and Yellowlegs

Greater Yellowlegs in Harpswell

Willets and yellowlegs are birds similar in appearance, as are the greater and lesser yellow legs. Greater Yellowlegs As you have already guessed, “yellow legs” are a distinguishing feature of this long-billed shorebird.  It differs from the lesser yellowlegs by … Continue reading

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Wind Turbines

Wind Turbines from a Hill in Beddington on Route 9 (2013)

Wind turbines and wind “farms” of many turbines are sprouting all over Maine.  Ridges and mountains are the most likely spots.  As a result, they are visible for many miles and may intrude on enjoyment of hikers or residents near … Continue reading

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Woodchucks

Woodchucks in Sherman (2017)

These cute large rodents (thus a mammal) are entertaining to look at, but potentially dangerous and disruptive. A member of the squirrel family, it is also known as the “ground hog” or whistle pig. According to Scientific American, Groundhogs are … Continue reading

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Woodpeckers

Downy Woodpecker

Maine Resident Woodpeckers Four species of woodpeckers are among the birds that inhabit Maine. The essence of being a woodpecker is the use of its sharp, pointed bill for digging into trees for nesting and extracting insects. Three share the … Continue reading

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York County Nature Preserves

Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge (2013)

Kennebunk Plains, McGuire Road, Kennebunk. This 1,000-acre sandplain community provides vital habitat for the endangered grasshopper sparrow and four other animals and plants of special concern in Maine. Managed by the Nature Conservancy, acquired with a grant from the Land … Continue reading

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