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Speaking of Nature
About 30 seconds after the above shot, the young bird took off and headed south. It takes four years for a bald eagle to develop their iconic white head and tail. Bill Danielson photo

Speaking of Nature: The American bald eagle

Sunday, February 7, 2016

For many of us, the official date of the European discovery of the New World is 1492. It was in that year that Christopher Columbus set sail from Spain and made landfall somewhere in the Caribbean (probably in the Bahamas). Columbus was not the first to discover America, however. There is strong evidence to support the notion that the Vikings … 0

Kids & Critters: Puffy birds

Sunday, January 31, 2016

I was having some trouble coming up with an idea for this month’s Kids & Critters when I remembered that my colleague Mr. L has two young boys. Since Mr. L’s classroom is right across the hall from mine I walked over to ask him what kind of animals interested his sons in … 0

Speaking of Nature: Sun-play on a winter Sunday

Sunday, January 24, 2016

It was the Sunday of a three-day weekend: a day that compares to no other. Everything in my bones told me to stay in bed, but the naturalist in me wanted to get up. It was already 7:15, which was a late morning for me, but because of the season it was still … 0

Speaking of Nature: the white-throated sparrow

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

If I love anything about writing this column it is the ability to accurately predict what my readers might see. Last week, I wrote a column in anticipation of the arrival of juncos in our area and not … 0

Kids and Critters: Butter-and-eggs

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

With autumn finally here, it should be obvious that the days are really starting to get shorter now. The Earth is moving in its orbit in such a way that the Northern Hemisphere is tilting farther and farther … 0

Speaking of Nature: Butterflies

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

At the beginning of July, I formally announced the launching of “The Butterfly Project.” Summer had just begun and I was in tremendously high spirits. What could be more fun, I wondered, than spending my days in pursuit … 0

Speaking of Nature: the spined macrothena

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

When I sat down at my computer to write this column on Sunday morning, I realized that I had absolutely nothing. To quote a line from Seinfeld, my mind was “as barren as the surface of the moon.” … 0

Speaking of Nature: wasps

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

There are very few people in my life who can quote poetry from memory. Thus, it was with great delight (and no small measure of awe) that I listened to our beloved Uncle Mort as he offered up … 0

Speaking of Nature: Queen Anne’s lace

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Wildflowers have been the focus of my kids’ columns this summer. In July, I introduced readers to hawkweed, a gorgeous orange-flowered plant in the composite family. In August, I switched families and took a look at the cow … 0

Speaking of Nature: Bill discovers a real head tern-er

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Standing at the edge of Malibu Lagoon, I was hypnotized by birds. Double-crested cormorants were perched on a large tangle of driftwood, snowy egrets were hunting in the shallows and common terns were flying overhead. All of these … 0

Speaking of Nature: The whimbrel

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

It was Thursday, Aug. 6, and for the first time in my life, I was on a beach in Malibu. I was not alone on this beach. There were well over 100 people swimming, walking or basking in … 0

Speaking of Nature: the western gull

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Sunday was my first day at home in over two weeks. At the end of July, I had to go east to Bridgewater University for an AP Teacher’s conference. Then I returned home for an evening of unpacking, … 0

Kids & Critters: Cow vetch

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been having a wonderful time this summer. The weather has been so mild that being outside and exploring has been something easy to do without getting too uncomfortable. As a result, … 0

Speaking of Nature: A fly with no name

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

So there I was, standing in the delightfully cool conditions of an early-July morning, waiting for a butterfly. This, it seems, is a theme when dealing with butterflies. Easy to see, they are (in my opinion) inflicted with … 0

Speaking of Nature: The height of summer

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Any of my regular readers will rightly identify a distinct lack of butterflies in this column. This is not because of a lack of effort on my part, but rather because of the bounty of distractions that nature … 0