36 Perkins St., PO Box 300040, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130-0030

Gerry Wright, Founder and President

Telephone: 617-524-7070


TTY/MA RELAY 800-439-2370

Friends of Jamaica Pond

History and Annual Park Keeper Award

Frederick Law Olmsted a one-man play by Gerry Wright

Nature's Class Room: Environmental Education Projects

Environmental Research Projects

Forestry Protection Projects

Emerald Necklace Bird Club

Volunteer Stewardship Program

Calendar and Meetings and Press

Memberships and Donations

Links and Resources

Contact and Email Info

"Let it be not for present use and delight alone, but let it be of such a work that our descendents will thank us for it."
Frederick Law Olmsted

Class Room:


Jamaica Pond's Albino Gray Squirrel

Eastern Chipmunk

Cottontail Rabbits

Great Horned Owls

Red Tailed Hawks

Butterflies and Dragonflies


Pink Lady's Slipper

Great Blue Herons

Emerald Necklace Fungi (Coming Soon)

Class Room: Summer

Emerald Necklace Butterflies and Dragonflies: 

The second page with individual Emerald Necklace Butterfly and Dragonfly photos with direct links to individual insect field guide information click HERE

Emerald Necklace Wildflowers:

The second page with individual Emerald Necklace Wildflower photos with direct links to individual wildflower field guide information click HERE

Class Room: Spring

Spring Bird Migration: Black and White Warbler, Yellow Rumped "Myrtle" Warbler, Eastern Kingbird

The spring bird migration in April and May of warblers, sparrows, swallows, thrushes and other rarer species enlivens the park environment. Warblers winter in the rain forests of Central America before coming north for the summer. Great time of year for bird watching.

The Black and White Warbler creeps and forages along branches and trunks of trees like the White Breasted Nuthatch.

The Yellow Rumped "Myrtle" Warbler (center photo) has a bright yellow crown, side patches and rump. Often seen in large groups with rapid flights between branches of trees and short flights from branches to catch airborne insects.

The Eastern Kingbird nests around the Jamaica Pond edges in the summer and is from the Flycatcher family. It has a very faint redish spot on the crown and is identified by the white band at the end of the tail feathers. Often seen on the tallest branches and very territorial, the Eastern Kingbird Tyrannus tyrannus is know to chase away much larger hawks and crows. It will often hover in mid flight as it hunts insects.

Class Room: Winter

Winter Moth - Operophtera brumata (L) Insect Order: Lepidoptera, Family: Geometridae

Winter Moths emerge from soil in late November and fly until January or the first major freeze. Male moths are brown or tan and have four wings fringed with hairy like scales. Male moths are often seen at porch and outdoor lights. Females are wingless and cannot fly. They are found in the ground at the base of trees. After mating the female lays 150 eggs in bark of tree trunks and branches. An entomology study found more than 250,000 eggs on each invested trees. Adult moths die and the eggs hatch in the spring when temperatures reach 55 degrees. The larvae are pale green caterpillars inchworms about 1/2 inch long with white stripes. The caterpillars climb the trees and spin a long silk thread that balloons them from branch to branch and tree to tree. The larvae eat buds and leaves of oaks, maples, basswood, white elm, crabapples, apples, blueberries and cherry trees. The larvae caterpillars can defoliate an entire tree. It was estimated that 34,000 acres were defoliated in Massachusetts in 2005. Repeat defoliation of a tree for 3-4 years can be fatal. Urban trees in the Emerald Necklace are already stressed from air and water pollution and are seriously threatened by the Winter Moth.

The Winter Moth is native to Europe and arrived in Nova Scotia in 1949. Eastern Massachusetts has seen large numbers for the past six years. The Mass. Department of Conservation and Recreation released the Cyzenis Albicans parasitic flies, a European native fly that feeds on the Winter moths to control the outbreak and the damage to area trees in Wompatucket State Park in Hingham in 2005 and the Iron Rail Property in Wenham in 2006.

Information: defoliators/ winter _moth .pdf

Dr Joseph Elkinton Professor of Entomology University of Massachusetts 413-545-4816, Forest Health Program in Amherst at 413-256-1601, DCR Boston 617-626-1250

Class Room: Fall

Cabbage White Butterfly

You will notice this flighty white butterfly around the pond and in your gardens.

What are the other life cycles of the butterfly?

The caterpillers favor easting plants in the cabbage family -- kale, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.   Thus its name.

Is this a female or male butterfly?

This is a female butterfly. The male has only one black spot.

Web sites for additional information

Spotted Sandpiper

You will notice this bird dipping along the edges of the pond.

What other birds use the pond as a fall migration resting stop or winter retreat? 

Many ducks, hawks, occassinal ospreys and eagles visit the pond during the winter.  Visit the Emerald Necklace Bird Club web pages to see ongoing list of birds.

What is the summer coat of the sandpiper?

Like its name suggests lots of spots on front chest.

Spotted Sandpiper summer spots

Woolly Bear Caterpillar

You will notice this caterpillar around the pond and in your gardens.

What are the other life cycles of the caterpillar?

The caterpillar pupates, spinning a cocoon then turns into the Isabella Tiger Moth. 

Can you tell how long and harsh the winter will be from its coat?

Folktale myths state the Woolly Bear caterpillar can predict the winter is going to be mild or rough by the stripe width.  If the stripe is narrow, it means the winter is going to be harsh.  If the stripe on the caterpillar is wide, it means the winter is going to be easy.

The caterpillar's red setae stripe width mid-section actually decreases as it grows older.

Web sites for additional information

Indigo Buntings + Cedar Waxwings + Wood Duck

To learn more about why Indigo Buntings are seen as a blue color and how it migrates at night using the stars plus the unique social behavior of Cedar Waxwings  and the recovery of Wood Duck populations after nearly being hunted to extinction click on the photographs!

Contact and Email Information


36 Perkins St., PO Box 300040, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130-0030

Gerry Wright, Founder and President

Telephone: 617-524-7070


TTY/MA RELAY 800-439-2370

For translations into different languages -- Arabic, Chinese, Italian, French, German, Russian, Spanish or others visit the web site:

Community Arts Advocates

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