It’s already the beginning of August; I don’t know how that happened so quickly! Summer is all about laying back, relaxing, closing our eyes and tuning into nature. During the day, we are fortunate to hear the lovely songs of the birds, the buzzing of the bees and the chirping of the squirrels. Summer wouldn’t be complete without the sounds of the cicadas which seem to echo through the humid air of the days of August. However at night, there is a completely different performance by the insect and critter community.

I make it my mission almost every night to be outside, to smell the fresh air, soak in all the sounds of summer and keep a close eye out for those fireflies.

I remember capturing lightning bugs (fireflies) in glass jars as a kid. It was so much fun to give them a temporary home for the night, before setting them free. There is nothing more magical than a firefly show.

I’ve always been fascinated by how fireflies glow. Males actually glow in order to attract female fireflies (o lala!) I always thought that these incredible insects would flash white or yellow light but depending on location they can also glow green and orange colors as well.

Instead of using a calming app or a sound machine, we can open our windows to hear the katydids and crickets serenading in the nighttime sky. Katydids are closely related to grasshoppers and crickets. However, female and male katydids both make sounds unlike their relatives, the crickets and grasshoppers in which only the males chirp. Katydids can also bite pretty strong.

Peepers also known as frogs, have a distinct sound which is reminiscing of tiny bells. When the peepers are together, it sounds like they’re calling back and forth to each other. In fact, the peepers use their sound as a mating call; males calling out females (no surprise there).You always know when summer is approaching when you hear the peepers.

I’ve done my fair share of research on all the sounds I have heard over the years coming from my backyard at night. I’ve distinguished the difference between the calling of owls and mourning doves, it’s pretty cool! One night, my family and I woke up abruptly to a noise coming from the woods which sounded like a man screaming. After we all played detective, we found out that this alarming sound was in fact an adult fox protecting its young or perhaps warning other foxes of danger.

Have you heard any of these sounds at your home in the Hudson Valley? Drop a comment below of an interesting experience and/or story! :)