While the woods around metro Grand Rapids may seem somewhat lifeless and dull brown now as they shake off the long winter slumber, marshes and ponds are teeming with life.

Bert Jackson and his brother Cliff (left) had an electrifying experience on Muskegon Lake.

Bert Jackson knew “something different was going on” during a bass tournament on Muskegon Lake when the fishing lure that he cast hit the water -- but his line didn't.

Instead of falling on top of the water like all his other casts, the fishing line hummed and levitated in thin air, taking a curved shape that pointed directly up to storm clouds that began rolling over the lake.

A lady flying squirrel will be making her debut this month at Blandford Nature Center, and she’s certain to attract the attention of visitors with her huge brown eyes, charm and poise. You’d say she’s got it all except for one thing – she needs a name.

Jacob Bourjaily spoke in Grand Rapids on dark matter, neutrinos and the cosmic speed limit.

Jacob Bourjaily stood before an audience of about 100 people who had come to hear him at the Schuler Books and Music store on 28th Street last Saturday and struggled a bit to shed some light on the topic of dark matter.

And why wouldn't he? Dark matter cannot be seen with the naked eye or felt against our skin, yet the Earth apparently is passing through great quantities of this mysterious substance every second without it affecting us in the least.

Visitors who braved the cool weather these past few weeks on walking trails near the east edge of the Blandford Nature Center in Grand Rapids were rewarded with a glimpse of our first signs of spring: the appearance of Snowdrops at the base of a few trees.

Late summer and fall are the most likely times in metro Grand Rapids to catch an awesome natural phenomenon without risking life or limb -- waterspouts over Lake Michigan.

With the right weather conditions and luck, you may be able to spot waterspouts anywhere along the lakeshore of the metro Grand Rapids area. Residents of lakeshore communities say these vortexes that resemble pint-sized tornadoes are infrequent, but not rare.

Some farmers along "The Ridge" in West Michigan's apple country let go a sigh of relief this morning that last night's cold weather didn't bring the disastrous frost that it did last year.

Jack Fisk knew he had a huge problem on his hands last Wednesday when a bale of hay in his barn that was smoldering from spontaneous combustion suddenly ignited "just like a bomb going off" as he tried to remove it with a skid loader.

Fanned by a steady breeze from the northwest, other bales of hay stacked three high started to burn as flames leaped as they do a forest fire -- and the barn held several hundred bales.