House Finch

The most common visitors to my feeders are house finches. Admittedly, they became part of the landscape as I kept my eye out for new or rarer birds. But this past weekend I decided to take my own advice (part … Continue reading

Bushtit

Introducing the bushtit – a tiny little bird with a hugely unfortunate name. Name aside, I was thrilled to find this new addition to the birds at my feeders. Apparently bushtits are very social, living in flocks of 10-40 individuals. … Continue reading

Robins

In my opinion, robins are often overlooked or dismissed as ordinary and unremarkable. They are common, yes, found across almost the entire North American continent and well-adapted to coexisting with humans. But like with many things, what we think we … Continue reading

Wigeon

As I walked along the creek path recently, I stopped to watch the ducks like I often do. After a moment I realized that one of those ducks was not like the others. Looking more closely, I noticed more of … Continue reading

A GiRaft

Rothschild’s giraffes are an endangered species with fewer than 3,000 animals left. In Kenya, there was a small population on a reserve on a peninsula of Lake Baringo, a key location because the animals were easily protected from poachers. But … Continue reading

Raccoons

In my experience, people either love or hate raccoons. Those in the latter group claim that raccoons are disgusting, overgrown rodents. Truth is, they are not rodents at all, but are mammals that belong to the order carnivora – meat … Continue reading

Canadian Lynx

There is a little-known conservation success story in Colorado that deserves celebration – it is about the return of the Canadian lynx to Colorado’s mountains. While it is called a Canadian lynx, the feline is native to the Rocky Mountains, … Continue reading

It’s Bat Season!

It’s bat season and I’m not talking about baseball – I’m talking about the flying mammal. Every spring, approximately 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats return to the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, Texas (and others return to different places across North … Continue reading

Banded Tulips

Banded tulips are not spring flowers. They are marine snails! Their smooth shells, that may grow to as much as four inches long, are easy to identify. They are marbleized white and brown, with 4-8 distinct brown lines banding the … Continue reading

Acorn Barnacles

Barnacles are often thought of as crusty little creatures that wreak havoc on boat and ships. While that is true, there is so much more to the story. Of course there is. This should not be surprising to me. Let’s … Continue reading