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Coastal Redwoods

In this week’s column, Stan Tekiela talks about his visit to the Californian coastal redwoods. California is known for many things—sunny beaches, Hollywood, Disneyland, its designation as the Garlic capital of the world—well, maybe not so much for this last one, but you know what I mean....

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About Birds and Plants

Today, Stan Tekiela, author of Backyard Birds: Welcomed Guests at Our Gardens and Feeders, talks to us about the relationship between birds and plants. Often the most complex relationship between birds and nature is right in front of us, but we don’t see it. For example, Blue...

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Observing a Total Eclipse of the Sun

Today, George Moromisato, author of 101 Amazing Sights in the Night Sky, helps us to observe a total eclipse of the sun. Lunar eclipses happened regularly enough that ancient astronomers were able to work out how to predict them. But total eclipses of the sun, which happen at a...

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Burrowing Owls

In today’s NatureSmart column, Stan Tekiela shares with us why the Burrowing Owl is different from all other owls. I love the rule breakers in nature. People tend to pigeonhole (sorry for the pun) birds and animals into categories not based on facts but on how...

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Common Backyard Weeds of the Upper Midwest

Teresa Marrone has been gathering and preparing wild edibles for three decades, and we are excited about her new book Common Backyard Weeds of the Upper Midwest. Hundreds of full-color photos with easy-to-understand text make this a great visual guide to learning about nearly 60 species of...

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Horned Lark—A One-of-a-Kind Bird

In this week’s column, Stan Tekiela shares with us about the Horned Lark, an interesting American bird. One particularly unique bird is the Horned Lark (Eremophila alpestris). Several dozen lark species occur in the world, but only one calls America its native home. This small songbird is found throughout...

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Frogs—Unexpected Desert Inhabitants

In all, around 4,500 species of amphibians occur around the world, but only a few dozen are found in the Southwest. All of our desert amphibians, with the exception of toads, require access to a water source to keep their skin moist. Not surprisingly, our arid Southwestern deserts...

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Trilobites—The Stars of U-Dig Quarry

Jon Kramer, Julie Martinez, and Vernon Morris, authors of the book Dinosaur Destinations, explore the most exciting dinosaur and fossil sites near you. Today, we take a look at the U-Dig Fossils quarry located in Utah. Found about an hour west of Delta, Utah, the U-Dig quarry is the...

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