I am happy to announce that I am in Leavenworth this week as a featured speaker for the annual Bird Fest! Icicle Creek and the Wenatchee River valley are host to a dazzling variety of spring migrants that favor the east side of the Cascade Range. In addition to exploring a variety of habitats seeing out these colorful visitors, I am leading three Owl Prowls on the 13th, 14th, and 15 starting at 9:00 PM. Friday afternoon at 3:00 pm I am presenting a virtual program on owls and their unique adaptations with some cool video footage. Saturday afternoon at 2:00 pm I am presenting a program on the woodpeckers of Washington showcasing their unique adaptations (such as why don't they need extra strength Exedrin after bashing their heads against trees all day!). To view these online presentations click on the following link to register: https://wenatcheeriverinstitute.org/bird-fest/bird-fest-2021.html If you decide to take advantage of this great spring weather and visit Leavenworth, send me an email and we can go out birding together. Have a great week and enjoy our seasonal feathered visitors!
Popular posts from this blog
November is the month when two species of Pacific Salmon return to the streams of their birth. After spending years out in the Pacific Ocean they find their way home to the precise tributary of their natal creek. This amazing homing instinct is the the final chapter in the lives of these fish...after they spawn, their bodies deteriorating in zombie-like fashion, they will die and their carcasses will be utilized by numerous other animals for food. The species pictured here are Chum Salmon; the location is Piper's Creek in Carkeek Park in north Seattle. You can view them now through most of December! Behaviors you can observe are: mate selection and pair bonding, excavation of their nests known as Redds, and perhaps if you are lucky, egg laying and milt fertilization. As you watch this annual ritual, ponder the fact that these salmon have been repeating this life cycle for tens of thousands of years! After hatching as alevin, growing into fry, then developing the characterist
Autumn is when mushroom enthusiasts in the Pacific Northwest are bent low to the ground sleuthing for fruiting bodies of fungi that are popping up everywhere. Fortunately for foragers and harvesters there are few (three) mushrooms that are deadly poisonous. Let's get acquainted with the enticing but toxic Death Cap (Amanita phalloides). The Death Cap is found low to the ground and has elegant proportions with a bell shaped cap that is pale olive green with a luster that often looks metallic. The gills are white as are the spores (observe the white spore print that I have included); spore color is an important feature in determining mushroom types. Notice the sac-like volva at the base of this mushroom: not all mushrooms have this feature but all Death Caps have volvas! The toxin in this Amanita is a potent cyclopeptide called amanitin. Amanitin disrupts the function of protein enzymes that leads to liver and kidney failure. The onset of symptoms (abdominal pain, vomiting
Great news. I have been rehired as Lead Naturalist at the Seward Park Audubon Center! With the pandemic restrictions easing as more people get vaccinated, National Audubon has decided that guided outdoor trips are safe for the public. I will be leading a variety of outings here: birds, bats, owls, trees, geology, native plants, even stargazing! You can follow my schedule offerings at our website: sewardpark. audubon .org I WILL continue to offer my personal guided outings as before, just on a more limited basis. My days off from Audubon will be Mondays and Tuesdays, so look for bird outings on those days. Owl Prowls and upcoming Bat Treks may be offered on any evening of the week or weekend. This first week will be hectic for me as I get back up to speed here at Seward Park so look for private outings announced next Monday...spring migration is in full swing and we will reinforce Birding by Ear skills on outings. Leavenworth Bird Fest was great with fantastic east-side of the C