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Notes from the Wild

milkweed beetle

Beetle Mania

Aug 4, 2020 | Don Scallen

Four beetles among hundreds of thousands, each with a unique story to tell.

Promethea Moths

Jul 6, 2020 | Don Scallen

While most moths release their pheromones after dusk, promethea moth females are an exception.

Red fox kits by their den entrance under an old garage. Photo by Don Scallen.

Red Foxes

Jun 16, 2020 | Don Scallen

The Georgetown fox family is lucky to be living in an older section of town where yards are spacious and tree filled.

Jefferson salamander eggs. Photo by Don Scallen.

Dispatches from a Vernal Pool

May 5, 2020 | Don Scallen | Blogs

Vernal pools, like coral reefs, are theatres showcasing life and death struggles between prey and predators.

Southern flying squirrel. Photo by Kim van Oosterom.

Flying Squirrels

Apr 7, 2020 | Don Scallen

Remarkably, flying squirrels can glide up to 90 metres, though most of their aerial journeys are much shorter.

Otters

Mar 9, 2020 | Don Scallen

The reappearance of otters in our hills is a hopeful sign that the capacity of our rivers and landscapes to support wildlife is improving.

Animal Tracks

Feb 6, 2020 | Don Scallen

Tracks inscribed on snow by unseen animals offer tantalizing multilayered puzzles.

Goldenrod gall predated. Photo by Don Scallen.

Insect Engineers

Jan 10, 2020 | Don Scallen

Football-sized bald-faced hornet nests, hanging from branches, are prominent in the winter landscape.

Trees can host multiple burls and still lead long, robust lives. Photo by Don Scallen.

Burls and Trees on Stilts

Dec 5, 2019 | Don Scallen

The reasons burls grow on trees are still not fully understood, but infection by viruses, fungus and bacteria are likely causes.

I’d love science to explore the possibility that two of our local tree species, beech and hemlock, might also be co-operating through fungal networks.

Tree Co-operation

Nov 12, 2019 | Don Scallen

The research into the co-operative nature of trees is in its infancy.

Caligraphic beetle

Night Creatures

Oct 8, 2019 | Don Scallen

Most of the nocturnal critters my friends and I find are insects, but spiders, millipedes and amphibians also appear in our flashlight beams.

The Flight of the Mayflies

Sep 14, 2019 | Don Scallen

The annual emergence of mayflies, wherever it occurs, brings predictable responses.

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