Gobbler Close Encounter

Gobbler Close Encounter

Jun 14, 2017

There are just some things that a person can’t get enough of. Like observing and listening to wild turkeys as they move about in their natural woodland habitats.  Iowa’s spring hunting seasons are over, of course. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that anyone has to quit messin’ with willing gobblers. It just means that you can’t bring any of them...

Prairie Blue Flag Signals Beginning of Summer

Prairie Blue Flag Signals Beginning of Summer

Jun 4, 2017

  If the sight of the first robin signals the arrival of spring; then what sign would we use to mark the beginning of summer? According to government time keepers, the answer is simple. Summer officially begins with the summer solstice which, in Iowa, will occur on June 20 at 11:24 pm. But although the solstice may be undeniably accurate, some folks choose...

Hooded Merganser – Iowa’s Other Tree Duck

Hooded Merganser – Iowa’s Other Tree Duck

May 24, 2017

  With its elegantly crested head and spectacular plumage, the wood duck is one of Iowa’s best known and most popular waterfowl. Most folks are also familiar with the woodie’s unusual woodpecker-like habit of nesting inside natural tree cavities or nest boxes instead of on the ground like other ducks. Fewer, however, may be aware that another...

Banded waterfowl — An Amazing Encounter

Banded waterfowl — An Amazing Encounter

May 18, 2017

No matter how many years I’m at it, observing and photographing waterfowl never gets old.   Waterfowl are always willing to provide plenty of surprises, and sometimes you don’t know what you’ve captured until you get back home to review your work.  This month’s surprise came in the form of duck bands.  A friend of mine owns a small, shallow pond...

Stalking Iowa’s Elusive Wood Warblers — A Daunting Task

Stalking Iowa’s Elusive Wood Warblers — A Daunting Task

May 13, 2017

  For Iowa birding enthusiasts, it just doesn’t get any better than the month of May. The final curtain call of the spring migration, it’s a time when everything seems to arrive at once. Spring migrants come in all colors, shapes and sizes. But of the more than 200 bird species that will nest in or migrate through our state, perhaps no single group...

Pheasant Back Mushrooms – A Four Star Iowa Taste Treat

Pheasant Back Mushrooms – A Four Star Iowa Taste Treat

May 11, 2017

  The morel mushroom reigns as undisputed King of the Wild Edibles. In Iowa, as elsewhere, Morel Mania is rampant. The elusive fungus is in so craved, in fact, that people who can’t find them buy them. But store bought morels aren’t cheap. At roadside stands and Mississippi River fish markets, these woodland taste treats are currently fetching $34 per...