From the rocky coasts of the Pacific Northwest’s mighty Pacific Ocean to the tops of the Canadian Rockies, through Florida Everglades’ River of Grass and across the painted deserts of the American Southwest then over the Appalachian Mountains … these galleries have a little bit of everything that the best of North American landscapes can offer.
Sulphurs and Whites
North America is wildly rich in butterflies and moths. In the United States and Canada alone, there are roughly 750 species of butterflies and a whopping 11,000 species of moths! With careful and painstaking research, more new species are still being discovered all the time!
When it comes to birds, North America is fantastically rich in native species diversity. While some species are found all around the world, the vast majority are found only here and nowhere else.
Bison, Goats, Sheep
Deer and Elk
Rabbits, Hares, Pikas
Rats, Mice, Voles
Seals and Sea Lions
Weasels, Otters, Badgers
We mammals have come a long way since the time of the dinosaurs. We’ve conquered the land, sea and air. North America has more than 740 species alive today.
96% of all currently living animal lifeforms alive today are invertebrates. Included are all the insects, arachnids, worms, crabs, shellfish, starfish, corals, and more! One thing they all have in common? No backbone.
Long before the first dinosaur walked the earth, reptiles ruled the world. 65 million years after the last dinosaur drew its final breath, North America’s modern crocodiles, alligators, snakes, lizards, and turtles and tortoises are still keeping our native natural history alive!
Did you know the word “amphibian” means “two lives”? All amphibians start their lives in the underwater, but after they go through a series of metamorphosis stages to adulthood, most trade gills for lungs and live the rest of their lives out of the water.
One of the largest families in the plant kingdom with nearly 28 thousand species around the globe, orchids are also one of the most popular and most sought-after flowering plants in history. In Victorian times, entire foreign expeditions were sent around the world at great personal risk led by fearless (and often ruthless) orchid hunters to acquire the next new unknown exotic species from the most distant corner of the Earth. Luckily for us, North America is rich with unique native species found nowhere else in the world!
Wildflowers by Color
Wildflowers by Family
By far our largest collection of galleries, these wildflower image sets are arranged by both color and by taxonomic family for use as a casual identification tool or field guide, or for more thorough scientific research for deeper understanding.
Sometimes called insectivorous plants, these amazing plants have adapted to a life in places where the soil is so poor in nutrients, that they’ve gained the ability to grow by trapping their food with modified leaves. By taking root in a harsh habitat, they have eliminated most of their competition from other plants.
Light-spored Gilled Mushrooms
Brown-spored Gilled Mushrooms
Dark-spored Gilled Mushrooms
Polypore and Crust Fungi
Unique & Unusual Mushrooms
Club, Coral and Fan-like Fungi
Without the enormous and nearly invisible world of fungi, there would be no forests or plants as we know them, no animals living, feeding and hunting in the forests and nothing to break down what organic matter is left. It’s this wonderful (and often weird) group that keeps nutrients moving and cycling through our world’s ecosystems.
Fruits and Berries
Agaves and Yuccas
This last and final collection of galleries include all the non-wildflower images such as our native trees, ferns, palms, fruits and berries, cacti, saprophytes, mosses, bromeliads and more!
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...
Only a handful of gypsum dunefields exist and New Mexico’s White Sands dunefield is by far the world’s largest, covering 275 square miles. MORE PHOTOS OF DESERTS MORE INTERESTING NATURE FACTS Interesting Nature Facts is a series about the flora, fauna and places...
The round-tail horned lizard (Phrynosoma modestum) is a member the lizard family Phrynosomatidae, also known as the spiny desert lizards. Horned lizards also happen to be one of the most curious and interesting of the American Southwest desert spiny lizards, which are...
Recently passing through Western Texas and Southern New Mexico, I by chance ran into a fellow Master Naturalist based near Albuquerque who told me all about the chocolate daisy (Berlandiera lyrata) a member of the aster family of native North Americans wildflowers. I...