...Notes from the Field

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Interesting Nature Facts #154 – Salamanders

Interesting Nature Facts #154 – Salamanders

The word salamander comes from the Greek word for fire lizard. While not a lizard or a reptile, salamanders are amphibians and related to frogs, are nocturnal and have been around since at least 40 million years before the first dinosaur! While these amazing animals...

Interesting Nature Facts #152 – Skippers

Interesting Nature Facts #152 – Skippers

Skippers are a group of butterflies in the Hesperiidae family that are often mistaken for moths, as most of them are drab brown to orange. They have short wings and stubby bodies, but you can always tell it’s a skipper because they have their thin antennae clubs...

Interesting Nature Facts #153 – Pierid Butterflies

Interesting Nature Facts #153 – Pierid Butterflies

Pierid butterflies (also known as the sulphurs and whites) are very common light-colored yellow or white butterflies that belong to the Pieridae family, which are often found feeding energetically on the nectar of wildflowers. It is believed that the English word...

Interesting Nature Facts #151 – Pronghorns

Interesting Nature Facts #151 – Pronghorns

The second fastest animal in the world (the cheetah is first), the pronghorn is the only surviving modern member of the Antilocapridae family in North America. Evolved to outrun the extinct American cheetah, it still retains its once most valuable resource - speed!...

Interesting Nature Facts #150 – Black-Tailed Gnatcatcher

Interesting Nature Facts #150 – Black-Tailed Gnatcatcher

One of the very smallest of all of North America's songbirds, the desert-loving, black-tailed gnatcatcher weighs about the same as a nickel. MORE PHOTOS OF BIRDS MORE INTERESTING NATURE FACTS Interesting Nature Facts is a series about the flora, fauna and places that...

Interesting Nature Facts #149 – Collared Lizard

Interesting Nature Facts #149 – Collared Lizard

Collared lizards are capable of bipedal locomotion. This means they can run on their rear two legs at speeds up to 15 miles per hour! If you see a collared lizard with red splotches on its body, you can tell it is a gravid female (carrying eggs) and these red markings...

Interesting Nature Facts #148 – House Finch

Interesting Nature Facts #148 – House Finch

When you think of birds feeding their babies in the nest, we immediately think of hungry little chicks gobbling up insects dutifully foraged in the surrounding environment. House finches do things a little bit differently, and feed their chicks a nearly 100%...

Interesting Nature Facts #147 – Damselflies

Interesting Nature Facts #147 – Damselflies

These ferocious little relatives of dragonflies have been gorging on mosquitoes and other small flying insects for at least 300 million years. While they are often seen clinging to rocks, reeds and other structures near water, they cannot walk at all. Their legs are...

Interesting Nature Facts #146 – Prairie Falcon

Interesting Nature Facts #146 – Prairie Falcon

Prairie falcons may look very similar peregrine falcons and do share a common extinct ancestor, but live in very different habitats and rarely come in contact with each other. The prairie falcon prefers nesting in the hot dry deserts and scrublands and ca sometimes be...

Interesting Nature Facts #145 – Drone Flies

Interesting Nature Facts #145 – Drone Flies

While bees are the current darlings of the invertebrate world, drone flies deserve a lot of credit as well. Not only do these cousins to mosquitoes, houseflies and horseflies live in almost complete obscurity in the public eye, these bee-mimicking insects play an...

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