In the case that some of you missed the snow this week, couldn’t get out in it, or don’t own a camera, here’s some photos of what you missed. We don’t often get a healthy snow here in the North Carolina Piedmont and it usually disappears within days of falling. It’s worth the effort to get out and enjoy it.  Read more

Bird Feeders

If you happen to be passing Bird Viewing while on your way to or from Catch the Wind on the Museum’s outdoor loop trail, stop and sit down for a few minutes. Grab one of the very comfortable Adirondack chairs (you won’t want to get up again) and set a while. You’re very likely to see Carolina chickadee, northern cardinal, tufted titmouse, white-breasted nuthatch, Carolina wren, downy and red-bellied woodpeckers, mourning dove, and pine warbler, among others, year round. InRead more

Winter Turtles

While most of the wetland’s water remained frozen-over on Thursday (1/11), there were many areas of open water. It was through one of these open areas of water that I spotted a roundish, dark object on the muddy bottom of the foot-and-a-half-deep water. The object was a mere 10 feet from the boardwalk so it was easy to determine that it was a turtle, a yellow-bellied slider. The slider remained motionless while I watched. Of the five species of aquaticRead more

Red Wolves and Sap-sucking Woodpeckers

Red wolves #1803 and #2062 seem to be getting along well. They’re frequently seen together with, so far, no observed conflicts. With mating season (Feb.) fast approaching, this behavior is promising. While standing and watching the wolves I noticed a cat-like meow and a gentle tap, tap, tap coming from high up in the trees inside the wolf enclosure, a yellow-bellied sapsucker at work. These rather small sized woodpeckers drill evenly spaced wells into the bark of trees. The wellsRead more

Last Chance to Get Out and Enjoy the Cold

In a day or two all of this coldness will be behind us. What little bit of snow we had will be forgotten too, a faded memory. So, if you like the cold you should get outside now and enjoy it. While you’re out there, check any remaining patches of snow for animal tracks, see who’s been wandering around the neighborhood while you’ve been warm and cozy inside. Go out and see what you can find. Every track tells aRead more

The Ice Is Upon Us

If you’ve had to go outside of your house lately, you’re no doubt aware that it’s cold out there. I spend a good part of the day outside. I confirm. It’s cold! Our wetland doesn’t often freeze, once each year, if at all. It’s annual freeze has come. We have two water features, besides the wetlands, on our outdoor acreage, a waterfall in each of the black bear and red wolf enclosures. The waterfall in the black bear enclosure neverRead more

Who’s Who

Just a quick revisit with our red wolves and to reinforce who’s who. Top photo: Female #2062 left and male #1803 right. Both wolves may be active throughout the day. The keepers, however, typically enter the enclosure in mid morning to clean up and randomly place food around the habitat. Following the keepers’ departure the wolves can be seen sniffing out the bits of food left by their attendants. Have fun!Read more

Red Wolf Update

Just a quick follow-up on our recently arrived red wolves. Both male #1803 and female #2062 seem to be adjusting well to their new home, although female 2062 is still a bit shy. She tends to stay at the top of the enclosure’s ridge when people are present at the overlook. Neither, however, are difficult to locate. In fact, they’re typically quite mobile, frequently moving about. Our female seemed very excited to find the beef knuckle tossed in by theRead more

Red-shouldered Hawk

A common sight here on the museum’s campus is the red-shouldered hawk. This one is fluffed up against the cold as it perches on a branch while surveying the swamp below for movement. Birds often fluff themselves up in cold weather, trapping air between the feathers effectively raising their R-value. Our resident red-shoulders are fairly tame, that is, they’re quite used to people. I’ve walked past them at a distance of less than ten feet without causing alarm. You couldRead more