Tag Archives: milkweed

Photo of the Week – December 13, 2013

Monday morning was cold here.  If I remember correctly, it was about 4 degrees below zero when I decided to go for a walk with my camera.  (Because, hey, what else would you do on a morning like that?) There … Continue reading

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The Softer Side of Wasps

A couple weeks ago, I posted a photo of a wasp (along with some other shots from a walk through one of our wetlands) and mentioned that I’d have a story about that wasp in an upcoming post.  Here you go… As … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – June 27, 2013

The wind finally let up enough to do some close-up photography last weekend, so I went to a small prairie here in town and wandered a bit.  Among numerous curiosities was the abundance of a tiny iridescent fly.  I had … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – January 17, 2013

Ok, I know milkweed seeds have been done to death by photographers.  I, personally, have somewhere around a zillion milkweed seed photos.  But milkweed seeds in the winter?  With hoar frost?  And a snowy background?  That’s just magic.  How can … Continue reading

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Evolution in Milkweed-Eating Insects

Not many insects can feed on milkweed.  Milkweed plants produce a toxin that disables a protein in animals – a protein that facilitates important functions such as muscle contraction.  Only a small number of insect species around the world have evolved ways to get around this … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – June 15, 2012

Milkweeds have very distinctive flowers, with unique shapes and features.  I guess it shouldn’t be surprising that their pollination story is equally interesting. First, milkweed flowers don’t produce thousands of of individual pollen grains that can each get carried away to other flowers by … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – June 8, 2012

I’m sticking with a beetle theme this week, it seems.  My last post focused on the currently ubiquitous soldier beetle.  This one spotlights the dogbane beetle. Read more and see a face-to-face photo of this insect below…

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A Soldier Beetle Occupation

Everywhere I look, I see soldier beetles. They’re in my yard, they’re in my prairies, and now I think they’re getting into my head (figuratively speaking).  The linden tree in our front yard is blooming this week, and every flower is loaded … Continue reading

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Nebraska Wildflower Field Guide

About 20 years ago, Jon Farrar, one of Nebraska’s preeminent naturalists and photographers published a fantastic field guide to the wildflowers of Nebraska and the Great Plains.  Unfortunately, the book sold out within a year and a half and has … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – June 30, 2011

It’s a great time to hike the trails at The Nature Conservancy’s Platte River Prairies!  Regal fritillaries are out in force, along with a number of other butterfly and insect species, and big wildflower season has begun, with many of … Continue reading

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