A Primrose, a Pea, and Snakes!

Pink evening primrose, or pink ladies, are just coming into bloom in Explore the Wild. There are two patches of these attractive flowers within fifty feet of one another in Explore the Wild, one on either side of the vending area.     Partridge pea, a plant that I try to cultivate in Catch the Wind here at the Museum has started to sprout. The seed leaves broke the surface last week and are starting to show the beginnings ofRead more

Some Spring Happenings

Top Photo: Immature plumaged hooded mergansers lingering in wetlands. I’ve been negligent in my duties and haven’t been reporting as often as I’d like to on the goings on in Explore the Wild and Catch the Wind. So much is happening, as it does every spring, that it’s tough to keep up. Here’s just a couple of handfuls of things that we’ve seen in the Wild over the past few weeks (not necessarily in chronological order). During the first weekRead more

Some Old Familiar Faces

The fine weather of the past week has brought out some old friends. A large female northern water snake that likes to spend her spring days basking in the sun under the still bare branches of the dawn redwoods at the base of the boardwalk is back doing just that. Look for her on the right side of the boardwalk as you walk down the last descending portion of the boardwalk.       Although a few common snappers haveRead more

News From the Wild

Top Photo: Two young males and a female hooded merganser. It’s definitely spring and things are happening fast.  Here’s a handful of observations from Explore the Wild and Catch the Wind. Still hanging in there as part of our wetlands avifauna are three hooded mergansers. The trio consists of two males in juvenal plumage and a female (not sure of her age).         While the ducks were resting on an island just off the boardwalk in ExploreRead more

Of Note

On the 81 degree day of Tuesday, March 17, a bald eagle was spotted (thanks to Al – Facilities) soaring over Catch the Wind. Thanks to a few Museum guests, I spotted the first of the season (for me) northern water snake. And, towards the end of the day, a raccoon was foraging along the path in Explore the Wild.         By the way, if you happen to see a raccoon here at the Museum which is close toRead more

Snakes in Holes

When the weather gets hot I sometimes see snakes taking refuge in holes at the base of the bald cypress and dawn redwood trees in our Wetland. The snakes often lie peering out of the holes. The snake sightings have increased over the past several weeks. One of the snakes that I regularly see is a large female. She is getting larger by the day. All of the snake pairings that I witnessed this past spring seem to have paidRead more

What Happened to the Green Herons in the Wetlands

I’ve seen zero activity this past week at either of the green heron nests in our Wetlands. I saw a heron flying away from the Wetlands Saturday (6/21) and one flew in to fish late in the day Wednesday (6/25). What has happened to the two heron nests that were started, completed and in which eggs had been deposited, at least in the nest visible from the Main Wetlands Overlook. The other nest, which is difficult to see, was placed in aRead more

Bluebird Update 6/24/14

We currently have one nest with four yet to hatch eggs, and one nest with four nestlings. There are three empty nests. One nest has failed. The Cow Pasture eggs finally hatched. All four nestlings look to be in good shape. When I opened the side door of the nest box at the Bungee Jump I expected to see four bluebird nestlings inside. What I found were two ant covered, dead nestlings and two unhatched eggs. There were no adultRead more

Turtles, Turtles, Turtles

Over the past three weeks I’ve come across 13 juvenile Yellow-bellied Turtles. I’ve either spotted them myself at known nest sites or Museum guests and staff have spied them, and in some cases, brought them to me after finding the little herps wandering around the campus. Who knows how many of the turtles have gone unseen while making their way to the Wetlands here at the Museum. How many of the turtles wander off in the wrong direction, away fromRead more