Looking for Adeyha

Top Photo: Taking a peek at Adeyha on the in-den camera at Red Wolf Enclosure. If you’ve visited the red wolf exhibit lately you might have had a difficult time finding both of our wolves. Oak, our female is usually not too hard to locate. She may be walking along the fence at the top of the enclosure, or trotting by at ground level, or lately, reclining behind a pair of mahonia shrubs near the kennel area of the enclosure.Read more

Squirrels, Kinglets, and Sapsuckers

Top Photo: Eastern gray squirrel stares from railing. Gray squirrels are all over the campus of the Museum of Life and Science, and they’re quite tame. If you have a bird feeder in your yard you’re probably all too familiar with gray squirrels. Despite their frustrating ability to eat most of what you put out for the birds, you have to hand it to them, they’re crafty beasts and can be fun to watch. Small, frenetic and always on theRead more

Frontal Arrivals

Top Photo: Yellow-bellied sapsucker. November 11, was overcast and cool, weather conducive to photography with saturated colors and no harsh light. A front moved through the area bringing in migrating birds. Here are images of just a few of what I saw that day. Yellow-bellied sapsuckers arrived earlier in the month, in fact the previous month, but it seemed additional sapsuckers rode in on the front. Hermit thrushes, like the sapsucker, have been in place here at the museum forRead more

Fall Color

Top Photo: Ginko, just begining to turn. Fall colors. Who needs the mountains for color! As far as the crunchability of the leaves once they hit the ground, check out my assessment of certain species and the quality of their crunch here. Of course, it’s mostly my personal opinion, you may have different favorites. But do check it out.Read more


Top Photo: Oak, female red wolf. Our new wolf Adeyha has been getting much of the attention lately, but at present, our female, born April28, 2014 is the one you most often see when you visit the Red Wolf Enclosure. Here she is in a series of photos taken a few days ago. On occasion, Adeyha, her potential mate, has been curled up out of view inside the den, directly in front of the overlook. I was able to getRead more

How do they do it?

Top Photo: Banded sphinx moth caterpillar barely hanging on. Following the night of our first frost of the season I ventured out to the Floating Walkway in our wetlands to see if I could find a banded sphinx moth caterpillar that had been seen the day before. I was interested in learning about their behavior in regard to pupation, where, when and how they go about that process. The caterpillar was still there. It was, however, only hanging on byRead more

Another Sphinx?

Top Photo: Fourth instar banded sphinx moth caterpillar (photo – Ranger Lauren). What at first appeared to be a new species of sphinx moth caterpillar on the quickly fading wingleaf primrose-willow (Ludwigia decurrens) in our wetlands here at the museum, turned out to be another of many banded sphinx moths (Eumorpha fasciatus) seen this year. It was a 4th instar caterpillar, and so, different in pattern than the preceding 3 stages and the following and final 5th stage of caterpillarRead more


Top Photo: Adeyha’s shaky first steps into our Red Wolf Enclosure. Born in May of 2014 our new red wolf is a nine year old male. He arrived onsite from Naibi Zoo in Coal Valley, IL. to his new home here at the museum Tuesday night October 24 and was placed in the kennel area of our Red Wolf Enclosure. The gate to the kennel was opened Thursday morning and out he came. He spent most of the morning cautiouslyRead more

Seeds, Leaves, Two Volunteers, and a Flower

Top Photo: Tiny seeds from pod of wingleaf primrose-willow in wetlands. Wingleaf primrose-willow (Ludwigia decurrens) is sometimes called seedbox because of its seed pod shape, square in cross section. Other names include, wingstem water primrose, willow primrose, upright primrose-willow. The alternate leaves of Ludwigia decurrens are “decurrent” – the leaf base extends down the plant’s stem as “wings.” This herb grows in wet or marshy areas, and is sometimes aquatic. Fragments of the plant will root in a day or twoRead more