Welcome to the Fall issue of the Cape Cod Insider--your source for news and happenings on the Cape and Islands.

Came back from a week on the Cape with many interesting things to report. Sharks, seals and manatees have all made the news recently.

Beaches from Nauset to Monomoy were closed over the September long weekend because of Great White sharks patrolling the seal-laden shores.

Widespread panic and shark spotting expeditions ensued but it turned out safe for all (except the seals).

A few unlucky seal carcasses washed up onto South Beach in Chatham which touched off a "Jaws-esque" scene of local news reporters broadcasting their nightly newscasts from harbors and beaches around Chatham.

No swimming flags went up and the surfers had to find alternative activities on Nauset Beach for a few days.

There were as many as 15-20 sharks (up to 15 feet long) and a few were even tagged by scientists from boats.

They hoped to gain valuable insight into their migration routes around New England.

Many more seals than usual appeared along beaches from Coast Guard to South Beach in Chatham. They were so close to shore that you could be standing in the water next to them.

They obviously knew the sharks were close-by and were seeking out protection in the shallow waters.

Cooler weather eventually came in and the sharks moved on.

Then it was time for a manatee to steal the headlines as one was visiting Rock Harbor and Dennis.

Believe it or not, this was not the first time a wayward manatee has visited these waters.

Now that it is prime bird migration season for the area around Monomoy, who knows what rare and fascinating birds that might put in an appearance to keep us amused through the Fall season.

This is supposed to be one heck of a leaf-peeping season for the Cape.

The wet spring and early summer, combined with this Fall's bright sunny days and crisp nights could really turn up the wattage on leaf colors in a few weeks.

Bearberry Hill in North Truro is a good place for colour of another sort. Its wind-scoured, nearly bald top, covered with the inedible berries that give it its name, offers not only a panoramic vista of the woods, with green, reds and yellows but also the Atlantic Ocean.

So enjoy the crisp air, the bright colours and the free space on the beaches--winter is right around the corner.

Be sure to visit www.cape-cod-insider.com for the best insider info on Cape Cod.

See you all next time.