Vanishing Prairie

Vanishing Prairie

Jul 29, 2021

“There was nothing to see but prairie, green stretches of grassland rolling quietly outward ‘till lost in the haze that trembled on the horizon.” – Those words are excerpted from the 1870’s logbook of Norwegian immigrant, Laurence Larson upon his arrival in Winnebago County, Iowa. A bumblebee collects pollen from a stand of purple prairie...

Blanding’s Turtle – Iconic Wetland Species

Blanding’s Turtle – Iconic Wetland Species

Jul 22, 2021

The iconic Blanding’s turtle is facing hard times.  By hard times, I mean the species has become so rare that most Iowans – even those who spend considerable time prowling the out-of-doors — will never see so much as a single Blanding’s in their lifetimes. Although more than a century of wetland drainage has negatively affected all of...

Iowa Wildlife Study Focuses on Threatened Turtle

Iowa Wildlife Study Focuses on Threatened Turtle

Jul 20, 2021

Following decades of silence, some of Iowa’s most secretive reptiles have begun emitting radio signals from the watery depths of Eagle Lake.  Twelve hours on and twelve hours off, the daily transmissions are being closely monitored by a team of wildlife diversity experts with the Iowa DNR.  The rapidly accumulating data is contributing to a first of...

Gender Specific Feeding – Fact or Fiction?

Unique on many levels, woodpeckers are among my favorite birds for intense observation.  Winter, spring, summer or fall, they never fail to entertain and educate.  Following a busy nesting season, most species begin fledging young by mid-June.  Hairy woodpeckers and downy woodpeckers are among the most abundant residents of the woodlands I...

Wild Mulberry Provides Summer Taste Treats

Wild Mulberry Provides Summer Taste Treats

Jul 5, 2021

The wild mulberry is one of my favorite summer taste treats.  With this year’s mulberry crop currently reaching full maturity, it’s time to grab your bucket and head for the woods.  Wild Mulberries – sweet and nutritious As healthy as they are tasty, mature mulberries pack a nutritional wallop.  A single cupful contains 60 high energy...