American Shad: The Iconic Fish of the Connecticut River

Many areas in this country have icon species that add richness to their sense of place. The Texas Gulf Coast is busy working to restore the iconic Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, and we have here in the Connecticut River watershed the American shad (Alosa sapidissima).

Migrating Under a Microscope

Since their arrival in the 1600s, New Englanders have constructed fishways to help fish pass over small dams and barriers, but the early designs were rudimentary, often just a constructed gap.

Ribs and Roots

Now we turn our attention to the colors and flavors below the ground—the roots—such as potatoes, carrots, parsnips, beets, celery root, sweet potatoes, turnips, and ginger, to name a few.

The Most Dangerous Animal in America

Connecticut is at the infestation epicenter of a beast that kills some 200 Americans a year; injures at least 10,000 others; is annually responsible for billions of dollars in property damage; trashes native ecosystems; and spreads an infection that causes fever, headache, fatigue, and, if untreated, injury to joints, heart, and brain.

Fly-Fishing the Headwaters

Some of the finest fly-fishing in all of New England takes place in the headwaters of the Connecticut River, in Pittsburg, New Hampshire.

Mount Sugarloaf

Last fall I set out once again to witness the magnificent foliage of Mount Sugarloaf in the late afternoon light.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund Matters

The value of open land accessible to all of us has never been clearer: as the pandemic has shown, available, safe outdoor spaces are critical to our overall health and happiness.

Estuary for Young Readers #11

My battalion of three-month Connecticut Union Army volunteers, along with a cavalry unit and a couple of drummer boys, sailed out of New Haven on board a double paddle-wheel ferry headed for Camp Glenwood, a mile or two north of Washington, DC.

Migratory Bird Act

On September 1, 1914, at 1:00 p.m., the last passenger pigeon on Earth, Martha (named after Martha Washington), died at the Cincinnati Zoo.

In the Darnedest Places: Rails

In the marsh, the wilderness makes its last stand.” So wrote the eminent New England bird man, Edward Howe Forbush, now more than a century ago.

Spice up Your Home Landscape

Unfortunately, finding the right native shrub can be daunting, and the offerings from the easy-to-find places, such as the local grocery store or big box hardware stores, have a limited menu, most of which are non-native and too many of which are invasive.

A Letter from the Editor:

If you are reading this, there is an excellent chance you love the River as much as we do. The more we speak with readers like you, the more we hear new and interesting stories about the River. This is an invitation to submit those stories to us so that we might share them with other readers. We have a process for doing this. Go to and read the detailed instructions on how to submit story ideas. You can also submit letters to the editor.

Send Us Your Best

This dramatic photo was taken by Frank Dinardi an amateur wildlife photographer from Connecticut.

An Editorial

When people wore gas masks to protect from the man-made stench of the Connecticut River

A Room with a View

Tom Rose does not live on the Connecticut River, but he lives surrounded by a panoramic River view. His view is not obstructed by buildings, by trees or by traffic-laden roads because he created it himself.