Category Archives: Prairie Natural History

Photo of the Week – December 19, 2014

Do you recognize this tallgrass prairie plant?   No?   Well, it is a member of the carrot family.   Early European settlers thought its roots could provide an antidote to rattlesnake bites. They were wrong.   The plant somewhat … Continue reading

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Contrasting Approaches to Prairie Management: Leopold, Land Health and Cabbages.

“A Land Ethic” is the concluding essay in Aldo Leopold’s 1949 book, A Sand County Almanac, and is the most powerful and relevant piece of conservation writing I’ve ever read.   Leopold’s essay spells out the changes we need to make in … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

What I Look For When I Walk Through My Prairies

Back in August, I posted some questions to readers about what they look for when evaluating their own prairies.  I got some excellent responses, which I really appreciated.  If you missed them, you can re-read that post and those comments … Continue reading

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Wanna Know What Really Makes A Sunflower Lose its Head?

Nearly-decapitated sunflower heads, scattered across the prairie.  Oh, the devastation!  Who could be carrying out such an evil plan? (Ok, more accurately, a weevil plan?) The head-clipping weevil, aka the Silphium weevil (Haplorhynchites aeneus) is a small dark-colored weevil, less … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – November 28, 2014

Ambush bugs are scary-looking little predators.  Their stocky bodies are heavily armored up front, and they have very thick raptorial forelegs like those of praying mantises.  I usually only spot ambush bugs when I’m photographing something else such as flowers … Continue reading

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Hubbard Fellowship Blog – The Amazing Burying Beetle

This post was written by Dillon Blankenship, one of our current Hubbard Fellows.  All photos are by Dillon. Back in September I had an interesting experience while sweeping out the shop. With a dustpan full of grass and dirt, I stepped … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – November 20, 2014

It’s been a cold week, though we’re finally starting to warm up again.  As a way to feel a little less chilly, I went back through some photos from the summer and found these three shots from late August.  All … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – November 14, 2014

The praying mantis is an impressive predator, especially when it’s a Chinese mantis the length of a ball point pen.  The ones who live around here seem to have a particular affinity for sphinx moths.  I haven’t yet watched the … Continue reading

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What’s This Flower? (Advanced Edition) November 11, 2014

Ok, I knew it wouldn’t take long to get a correct answer on the first plant quiz this morning, but four correct answers within two minutes of posting?  Good grief. Apparently, that one was too easy for many of you, … Continue reading

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What’s This Flower? November 11, 2014

The temperatures dove into the low teens last night, and I had to be cautious of numerous icy patches along the highway this morning.  I found myself feeling reminiscent of summer wildflowers, and thought maybe you would be too. So … Continue reading

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