Those special moments in nature: some photos

Those special moments in nature: some photos

I haven’t been able to finish some articles I’ve started (sometimes work gets in the way …) but I’ve been blessed with wonderful moments in nature the last several months – so here they are along with short explanations. [Read more...]

Now’s the time to see butterflies – and what’s better than a ‘puddle party’

Now’s the time to see butterflies – and what’s better than a ‘puddle party’

I was up camping in the San Bernardino Mountains this weekend and one joy was coming across a muddling area, next to the stream my friend Christine and I were camping near. It was lush with butterflies — also called a puddle party. For those who don’t know, a muddle is a mud puddle, or in this case it looked more like a couple circular areas of moist, fine gravel that were several feet across. I sat for about 45 minutes and enjoyed the parade of butterflies as they gathered nutrients the muddle provided, and buzzed each other. Butterflies weren’t the only ones. Various insects and bees alighted too, and the butterflies occasionally harassed a train of harvester ants, making them pick up their pace. (See photos below)

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Wildcam photos from last night

Wildcam photos from last night

We have a mulberry tree growing outside our property in the back alley, and a lot of wildlife scat hinted that we weren’t the only critters eating the fruit.  So we put the camera up last night and here is what’s also enjoying the mulberries, which are so plentiful they drop to the ground. We’re so glad we live along a wildlife corridor. [Read more...]

Positive News for Wildlife

Positive News for Wildlife

I admit to not reading some environmental news because it can get so depressing. So, here’s some recent positive news, including two in California. One thing I do appreciate about living in California is the state is a leader in environmental thinking.

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Even More on Rattlesnake Relocation

Even More on Rattlesnake Relocation

Dr. Erika Nowak from Northern Arizona University commented on my last rattlesnake blog on relocating rattlesnakes, and provided the following info – so I thought I would provide it as a separate blog.

In a nutshell, if you must relocate rattlesnakes (which is preferable to the alternative of killing them) – relocating them close to their original range improves their survival chances. [Read more...]

What I’ve learned about GMOs

What I’ve learned about GMOs

I did a presentation on GMOs  for our local AAUW discussion group and thought ‘why waste all that reading’ – so here’s a quick overview of what I learned. I read the following books: Mendel in the Kitchen by geneticist Nina Federoff, which was ranked more anti-GMO in this helpful article by Nathanael Johnson on grist.org, and Food Inc. (2003) by journalist Peter Pringle, which was more pro-GMO. I also read [Read more...]

What’s blooming (and feeding wildlife) in our native plant yard

What’s blooming (and feeding wildlife) in our native plant yard

We have an early spring this February with our warm Southern California weather. I’ve been keeping track of what our resident hummingbird – the Anna’s Hummingbird – is taking nectar from in our reconverted lawn, now mostly California natives. The insect life is also rich – which in turn attracts the hummingbirds and other winged life. Seems photos will speak best, so here are a few from the last couple months. [Read more...]