Plant Identification

One million animal and plant species are on the verge of extinction, according to a United Nations report released in May, and we humans bear much of the blame. Climate change, overfishing, pollution, and urban expansion are all threatening Earth’s biodiversity, and with it our own food security, health, and quality of life, according to…

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Rest easy, because sunny days and beautiful blooms have returned! Whether you’re in the White Mountains or the wetlands of the Mid-Atlantic, you’re bound to catch glimmers of red, yellow, pink, blue, and violet peeping through the trees. Pull up those galoshes, dust off that wildflower field guide, and celebrate the season by heading to…

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Oceans, glaciers, rivers, lakes, and streams cover 71 percent of our planet. The 2015 Waters of the U.S. Rule ensures protection of these water sources from pollution and other exploitation. For now. Under the Trump administration, the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of the Army have moved to rescind the rule and return to previous…

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Getting the kids outdoors might be as easy as heading into the backyard or down the block to the neighborhood park. But once you’re outside, keeping kids engaged for an hour or two can be challenging. For a list of cheap and simple outdoor activities kids can do anywhere, we turned to Angel Santos Burres,…

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The next time you visit the White Mountain National Forest, you may notice more phones than usual in the woods. No, cell service in the White Mountains didn’t magically improve. Any possible influx of photo-snapping and trail-texting is likely due to the iNaturalist app, newly integrated into AMC’s Mountain Watch program. Mountain Watch began in…

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If your kids are like mine, they’re naturally observant and curious—which can make everything from a simple walk in the woods to a challenging mountain hike an opportunity for questions. Lots of questions. We polled AMC guides on the common queries they hear from kids on the trail. We’ll leave the answer to the most…

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If a lot of acorns are knocking you on the head and crunching underfoot, it might be a boom year for nuts in your neighborhood. Trees don’t make acorns at a steady pace. Oaks, for instance, “will produce very few acorns for three, four, or five years. Then, all of a sudden, they’ll produce 100 times as many,” says Richard Ostfeld, a disease ecologist with…

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Untouched by humans for centuries but ravaged by deer and nearby development, an old-growth forest in suburban New Jersey was foundering until ecologists stepped in, revisiting the question of wilderness versus management. You wouldn’t guess from the patchwork of yards, golf courses, and I-95 feeder roads surrounding it, but an ancient forest stands in suburban…

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Of the hundreds of hikes I’ve taken in my life, the night hikes really stand out. Even the most familiar terrain feels and sounds different once the sun sets, especially if you plan ahead and know where to look. Kids love these nocturnal adventures, as well. Not only does night hiking mean staying up past…

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Since 1876, volunteers have been central to AMC’s mission of understanding, enjoying, and protecting the landscape and trails of the Northeast. So, when research and education staff created Mountain Watch in 2003, AMC was confident volunteers would step up. In the 13 years since its founding, Mountain Watch has benefited from the passion and commitment…

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