Phenology

Phenology
Mini-mystery revealed: They're caterpillar houses.

The little known, but very abundant, bagworm moth has recently emerged from the protection of the home it built and carried on its back throughout its larval-hood!

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The bagworm caterpillar is safe when left in its tiny house.
Dung Beetles: Waste Warriors!

Among the world’s smallest sanitation engineers, the dung beetle takes on the task of managing the world’s copious quantities animal waste with enthusiasm and rivalry!

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Spring nighthawks: Acrobats of the bird world

When you hear the distinctive call of these late Mississippi River flyway migrants, look to the early evening skies to enjoy their graceful dusk-hour dives.  

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Common nighthawk
The mighty call of the... timberdoodle?!

Nothing says spring like the fabulous courtship display of this odd "shorebird"!

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American woodcock
Unpredictable weather, fuzzy eaglets and great horned owls

This time of transition between winter and spring can be a wishy-washy, ambivalent affair. It’s sunny and 50 degrees, then 20 and snowing. Likewise, some bald eagles are still hanging out in their winter homes or migrating along the Mississippi River, while others are nest-bound, feeding fuzzy eaglets. Another impressive hunter, the great horned owl, is also nesting these days. Luckily, there's great local spots to see all of this avian action, both outside along the Mississippi River and online.

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The eaglets have hatched!
Not a creature was stirring...

Not even a...vole? An evening visit to the compost bin turns into a deadly encounter with a native rodent.

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Picture of a red-backed vole
Hey, bud!
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Elderberry bud

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