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Archive for July 2014
The Minnesota Viking’s New Stadium Will Be Deadly To Migrating Birds—But Doesn’t Have To Be
It’s a fact that large buildings kill birds.  Especially large ones that are brightly lit at night. Years ago your writer lived in New York City and worked in lower Manhattan across the street from the twin towers of the World Trade Center.  I volunteered many mornings during the spring…

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Do You Know The Differences Between Ravens And Crows?
Ravens are remarkable birds.  And while not dismissing their cousin crows as the boring wallflowers of the party, ravens have a story of their own that’s worth knowing. Avian Royalty Inside the Tower of London, a man called the Yeoman Raven Master watches over a flock of all-black birds. The…

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The Mysterious Migration Of the Dragonfly
If you’re lucky, dragonflies will join the birds and butterflies in your backyard this summer. You will enjoy their presence—especially during cookouts and other outdoor activities—because they eat those pesky mosquitoes and flies. Dragonflies are attracted to water. Therefore, if you have a birdbath, water garden or pond, you may…

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What’s A Pawpaw?  Can You Really Eat One?
Pawpaw season will arrive soon in the Eastern US.  So just what is a pawpaw, other than something many of us sang about as children? And what the heck does one taste like? It’s actually an interesting story… The Common Pawpaw is the northernmost New World representative of a chiefly…

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Butterflies and Weddings Are Not A Good Pairing
Now that it’s high season for weddings, it seems a good time to remind folks that releasing butterflies at weddings is generally a bad idea.  Below is a reprint of one of our more popular blog entries from a few years, right about the time of the Royal wedding. From…

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Don’t Miss Tonight’s Supermoon!
The moon that rises tonight (Saturday) is what has come to be called a “supermoon” —  because it’s both only hours from being perfectly full and hours from one of the year’s closest approaches to Earth. This combination makes the moon appear bigger and somewhat brighter than usual, even for…

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Blue Streak Special— Ever See A Skink?
There’s a rustling in the leaves. You look to see what made the sound, and bam—a blue streak vanishes into the duff. Was it a snake? A lizard? Was that intense cobalt color even real? Yes, it was real. The creature responsible for the streak was a lizard called a…

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Why Do Cowbirds Leave Their Eggs In Nests Of Other Birds?
After reading a recent blog entry about brood parasitism in cliff swallows, a number of readers wanted to know more about the well-known sort of brood parasitism practiced by cowbirds. If a vote were taken tomorrow to find the most popular bird in the country, it’s doubtful that the cowbird…

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How Many Teeth Do Sharks Have?
Wouldn’t it be nice if our teeth replaced themselves whenever we needed a fresh set? No more drills. No more crowns. No more denture adhesives. That’s what happens to sharks. In fact, some sharks replace their teeth every few weeks. So the answer to the question posed above is— as…

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How Do Birds Deal With Hurricanes Like Arthur?
Hurricane Arthur is working its way up the East Coast, threatening the beach vacationers from Florida to Maine with bad rain, highs winds and big surf.  While Arthur’s wind, rain and storm surge will certainly affect many people, some folks are also wondering about the effects the hurricane may have…

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Summer Stingers—What You Should Know About Wasps And Yellow Jackets
It’s summer, and the yellow jackets are back in force. Should we be alarmed? Well, it helps to know a little about these creatures. Yellow jackets are a type of paper wasp—that is, they build structures out of a special paper made by adding saliva to chewed-up plant fibers. In…

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What Happens To Young Birds After They Leave The Nest?
It’s happening all around us right now— young birds are leaving their nests and striking out on their own.  We at eNature have been watching the Osprey on the Chesapeake Bay fledging over the past few weeks.  When your nest if over water as most osprey do, you better be…

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