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Hail the Hardy Harlequins

Hail the Hardy Harlequins

Named after the performing clowns of the 17th Century, these ducks make a splash
Ya' just have to admit, those Harlequin drakes are a showpiece. They look like they were posing for Roy Low when he found them all ganged up on the rocks on the Southern Oregon Coast, enjoying the crashing surf.

Return of the Vaux's Swifts

View this nightly aerial spring spectacle as the birds come back to Bend to roost
The Vaux's (rhymes with foxes) swift is a 4½-inch long, fast-moving bird (it's a swift after all) that resembles "a cigar with wings." The smallest of all North American swifts, these aerial acrobats put on a nightly show during their annual migrations through downtown Bend.

Earth Day is Upon Us

Personal, natural and other solutions to help slow climate change
Earth Day is upon us, and with it the time of year during which many think about their relationship with Earth. It's tempting to write tips for the top five things you can do to save the earth, or easy ways to make a difference, but the reality of the natural world on this Earth Day is that we are WAY beyond that.

All Hail the Queens

The future of bumblebee species depends, as it always does, on the queens who have survived winter and are now emerging
During spring, have you ever found yourself bobbing and weaving to avoid being bonked in the head by half-inch-long fuzzy missiles? Those big buzzers are bumblebees—bumblebee queens, to be exact.

Signs of Spring in the Wild

Part two of our two-part series
Spring is always a joyful time in Central Oregon, and all the more so this year as we inch closer to the end of the pandemic. To help you celebrate this all-too-short season, we emailed local botanists, birders and other naturalists to ask them which signs of spring they most look forward to encountering at home and in the wild.

Signs of Spring in the Wild

Spring is bursting out all over in Central Oregon. Don't miss out
Traditionally, one of the first signs of spring in Central Oregon takes place this month, when flocks of optimistic new residents purchase annuals in full flower from big-box retailers. A second sign of spring arrives weeks later, when those same people, now less optimistic, return to buy new flowers to replace those that were killed by one or more spring frosts.

'Braiding Sweetgrass' Author Comes to Central Oregon

Dr. Robin Wall Kimmerer to speak at virtual Nature Night
One of the benefits of the pandemic (yes, there are a few benefits...) is that previously inaccessible experiences are now open and there for many more people.

Blindsided by a Mole

An Oregonian's book about moles inspires a look at what these creatures are all about
Even though I'm nearing the end of my sojourn here on this beautiful earth—our home away from home—I still appreciate fresh new experiences to keep me young. Such was the case when I entered Tsunami Books on Willamette Street in Eugene.

Monarch butterflies need your green thumb

Growing and planting milkweed can help
As spring draws nearer by the day, many people in Central Oregon start to get eager for the resumption of warm weather and springtime habits. For some, gardening tops that list, and they jump the season by starting garden seeds indoors.

Winter Wildlife Tracking

Take some time on a snowy winter day to see where animal tracks might lead you
If you're like many central Oregonians this winter, you're spending a lot of time outside in the snow. Whether skiing, sledding or snowshoeing, taking the time to pause and observe wildlife tracks in the winter can be a great way to learn a little more about the wildlife with whom we share these snowy playgrounds.

Conservationists Howling Mad After Gray Wolf ESA Delisting

Controversial action by the USFWS has conservation groups going to court
The return of gray wolves to their ancestral haunts is one of the great American conservation success stories. These ancestors of the domestic dog were extirpated over much of their range in the last 100 years.


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What do you think of the CDC's revised mask guidelines?
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