Creature Feature

September 1, 2015
Red-shouldered Hawk on snag

Creature Feature: Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus)

I was gazing out at the bird-feeder when the hawk cruised in. As the birds scattered, I expected the usual Cooper’s Hawk, but was startled when a […]
July 1, 2015
Common (Northern) Map Turtle - Photo D. Gordon/E. Robertson

Creature Feature: Map Turtles (Graptemys species)

We were looking at turtles basking along Darby Creek and something wasn’t clicking. The kids were asking about the turtles, and my mind was drawing a blank. […]
May 1, 2015
Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Creature Feature: Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris)

I leaned over the footbridge railing and looked where she was pointing. At first all I could see was a tangle of zig-zagging sycamore branches, but then […]
November 28, 2012
Rusty Balckbird

Creature Feature: Rusty Blackbird

"Something isn't right here," the woman said with a perplexed look on her face. Our group was birding Greenlawn Cemetery, and we'd just looked through an apparent group of Grackles. Most of us had already moved on, but she looked back at the Grackles, a few of which had dropped to the ground and were tussling with leaves and tree debris. "They don't sound like Grackles," she intoned. As it turned out, we had almost been fooled by the Midwest's stealthiest winter resident, the Rusty Blackbird. Her initial comment was also prophetic about the species as well.

August 20, 2012
Great Egret Gliding (Photo courtesy Kim Graham, copyright 2012)

Creature Feature: Great Egret

It’s one of the most recognizable symbols in conservation: the flying Great Egret, symbol of the National Audubon Society, devised when the organization was lobbying to […]