Secret Spot

Top Photo: The view from the Secondary Wetlands Overlook. When you find a nice quiet “secret” spot to sit and rest, think, or meditate, it’s a good idea not to tell all of your friends, it will soon become a not-so-secret spot. I feel compelled, though, to tell you about this one. You’ll find out on your own anyway, sooner or later. It’s the Secondary Wetlands Overlook. It’s been “done-over” and remade into a shady rest stop for weary walkers.Read more

The Changing Environment and Chronolog

Top Photo: Wetlands in summer. If you haven’t been to the museum’s wetlands in a while (let’s face, not many people have since this past March) and you miss it, here’s a few shots of what it looks like now. Back in March the deciduous trees were just beginning to leaf and aside from the needles of the loblolly pines the scape was shades of grays and browns. Now it’s full of color with the black willows, redwoods, cypress, maples,Read more

Interesting Sightings Around the Loop

Top Photo: Dogbane beetle. While out on the trail I’m often asked, “see anything interesting today?” or “see anything cool?” The short answer is always “yes.” The truth is, every time I go outside I see something interesting, and it’s all cool. In order to see things, though, you have to be where things are, and you have to look. Part of it is knowing what to look for but it’s mostly just being aware of your surroundings. Like clockwork,Read more


No, TACO Week doesn’t mean we here at the museum will be making, serving, or eating tacos, although you can eat tacos that week if you desire. TACO Week is short for Take A Child Outdoors Week. You should already be doing that, taking your kids out of doors, as often as you can. But, this is just a reminder, an excuse, in case it slipped your mind. This year, TACO Week is from 24 thru 30 September. Though we’reRead more

Out For a Walk

You never know who you’ll come across out on the paths here at the Museum. Out for a stroll in the warm sunshine yesterday (above, l-r) were Sarah, Lightning, Cooper, Chris, and Terrence. It seems all were in a happy, springtime mood.Read more

The People

In February of 2015, I posted a collection of photos of the Museum staff. There were seventy some photos. This post is a follow-up to that with both familiar as well as a few new faces. But, not everyone on staff is included. Some folks don’t like to be photographed. And, you would have had to have made a trip to the outdoor exhibits to be seen by the lens of my camera. So, you may not see yourself inRead more

End of the Line: Part 1

Recently, I was sent an email by a coworker which included a link to “a gorgeous poster that contains every single bird you’ll see in North America.” It begged a click. It was indeed an impressive poster, bright, colorful, and many, many species. The illustrations were a bit stylized—if you weren’t already familiar with the birds depicted you may not be able to make an identification of a particular species from the rendered images – but it was an attractiveRead more

Let’s Set Sail!

Over the next several weeks or so, Nature Watch will have a guest blogger posting about a new type of environment – our ocean! The Museum of Life and Science is partnering with the Cassar Lab in the Nicholas School of Environment Division of Earth and Ocean Sciences at Duke University, for a look into the life and work of oceanographic researchers.  We are inviting you to be a part of the journey to discover what happens on a research expeditionRead more

A Slider out for a Stroll

Top Photo: Yellow-bellied slider retreats into shell after being discover on path.   I sometimes mention in the blog, the fact that any sunny and relatively warm day during winter, we at the Museum are likely to see turtles out basking on the rocks and stumps in our wetlands. Yellow-bellied sliders seem to come out of their slumber on the bottom of the pond quite easily, a warm day or two is all it takes. We’ve had many unusually warmRead more


Antipodes is an island, or group of islands, southeast of New Zealand. The word itself, antipodes, means something that is the exact opposite of something else. The root is from the Greek or Latin, anti, opposed or against and pous, foot. Speaking geographically, antipodes is or are two geographic places on opposite sides of the globe. Growing up, I can remember playground discussions about what would happen if you dug straight down into the earth and came out the otherRead more