Friday, January 30, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
I’m participating in Thematic Photographic 33 - Surprise.
I was in Racine, Wisconsin for the holidays and discovered this perfect hole in the 18 inch snow next to my parents’ home. There was also a trail of small animal tracks leading away from that hole. Everything was all white so my camera could not capture the tracks. But the family dog was very interested in the spot. I think it was a mole or shrew tunnel and tracks. What a great surprise-wildlife find.
Monday, January 26, 2009
Photographs by: Paul Davidson
Publisher: Kids Can Press, Limited
This is a great introductory book to bugs for kids. When I was younger I would run, screaming and kicking if an icky bug got too close to me. Yes, despite spending endless summer days outside, I was such a typical girl when it came to bugs. But if I had this great picture book, I might have taken the time to observe bugs more closely. The book is full of great up-close photos of all kinds of bugs, like bees, Daddy Long-Legs, spiders, wasps, and grasshoppers. It even explains the different parts of the body, mouth-parts, how different kinds of bugs eat, survive and reproduce.
B& N Synopsis
In real life, this katydid would be about the size of a raisin, but through Paul Davidson's powerful camera lens, you get to see it super-sized. What else will you see in Bugs Up Close? A fly magnified to the size of a man's shoe, the lenses in a dragonfly's eyes, the hair on a bee's legs and much more. Plus bug-lover Diane Swanson will tell you about the buggy bits, such as antennae, wings and weapons, that help make insects the most numerous and widespread animals on Earth.
Did you know?: Some insects molt more than 50 times, shedding their exoskeletons as they grow. A grasshopper can travel a distance 15 times its body length in one leap. Some small flies flap their wings 1000 times a second. Many insects smell with their antennae, and some taste with their feet. A single egg laid by some species of wasps may produce up to 1000 new wasps. Bugs Up Close features common North American insects, such as mosquitoes and ladybugs. The index of insects and superb close-ups will help learn about the bugs in your neighborhood.
Don’t Squash That Bug!
Author: Natalie Rompella
Publisher: Lobster Press
I recommend this book for young students and early readers in grades pre-K-2. It is mostly a picture book with snippets of information about bugs, their natural history and behavior. It is also a perfect outdoor activity book for the nature walks, outdoor adventures or nature hours. What makes this book so great is that it introduces young readers and adults alike to the twelve orders of insects. This is definitely a must-have book for your aspiring entomologist.
This fun book introduces young readers to the insect world, presenting fundamental information alongside interesting, little-known facts. Bold, bright, and packed with colorful photos, fascinating sidebars, a helpful glossary, and tips for where to find bugs, this a must-have for curious backyard explorers. Once kids discover how amazing insects can be, they'll go from squashing bugs to studying them up close! Content evaluated by Zack Lemann, Staff Entomologist with the Audubon Nature Institute, and Steve Sullivan, curator of the Chicago Academy of Sciences and Notebaert Nature Museum.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
This is my second post in honor of Squirrel Appreciation Day. When I first asked myself - "What wild animals live in big cities?" Squirrels (and birds) were the first animals that came to mind.
Two squirrel nests in one tree. Very likely, these nests belong to the same squirrel.Close-up of one of the nests. Notice how the drey is wedged in the fork of the tree.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Squirrel Appreciation Day is celebrated every January 21 since 2001, thanks to Christy Hargove of Asheville, North Carolina. (Interestingly, there is also a National Squirrel Appreciation Week October 7-13). She was working at a local Wildlife Rehabilitation and Rescue Center when she founded this cause.
So I'll share my photos and videos of squirrels, from a Wildlife Rehab and Rescue Center in my neck of the woods.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
A leaf bug
Sunday, January 18, 2009
In a previous post, I recommended spending more time outdoors by taking a walk through your neighborhood or local park. It’s a perfect (cost-effective) way to make memories, get some fresh air and exercise, and nurture those scientific minds.
I take strolls through my neighborhood all the time – that’s how I come to share all of these photos and narratives with you. But if this idea of urban nature strolling sounds too vague or aimless, let me offer some ideas. I have put together a list of things to get you and your family (or students) started. I was inspired by the Handbook of Nature Study post 99 Outdoors Sorts of Things to Do. Items marked with an asterisk are activities I’ve checked off my list.
1. Make maple syrup.*
60. Feel a sea star. *
90. Walk barefoot in the mud. *
95. Go snowshoeing or snow sledding.
100. Collect a mold of a mammal track.
101. Watch a bird build its nest. *
102. Do a tree bark rubbing. *
103. Do a leaf rubbing.*
104. Catch butterflies with a net.
105. See wild elk.
106. Catch a crayfish. *
107. Go searching for ground hogs on Groundhogs’ Day. *
Friday, January 16, 2009
What do scientists look like?
If you weren't told about the identity of the scientist, what image comes to mind? For many people, school children to adult, the image of an older European male comes to mind. However, there are scientists who are young, female and represent every nationality and ethnicity known. So why does this perception persist that field of science is so homogenous? Is it? Or is it a misperception based on sampling of scientists at meetings.
How can blogs by minorities be used to attract kids into science careers?
- open to discussion, but this is why I blog.
How to get and make allies? What allies can and should be doing?
1. Reach beyond comfort zones (yours and your institution's)
Leverage relationships scientists of colors you know or have access to, eg. speak at newarby HBCUs or ask faculty from nearby institutions to speak at your department.
Host public events and use target advertising to reach under-represented audiences.
2. Be inclusive. Talk, introduce yourself, introduce them to others.
3. Proactively engage students in extra-curricular science activity.
Cultivate science interests in undergraduate and pre-college students.
4. It's okay to mentor students that do not look like you
How the Web provides new methods and means for action and effecting positive change.
1. Profiling science discovery and scientists
2. Opportunities for netwoking, research, interviewing scientists of color
3. Promoting science and diversity initiatives e.g. Year of Science, DNA Day; Decades of Blacks in Science, Black History Month, Latino History Month, Chinese New Year
Growing catalogue of Science Blogs written/contributed by persons of color
http://asymptotia.com/author/cvj/ (perhaps the longest running science blog) Urban Science Adventures! (c) http://urban-science.blogspot.com
49 Percent http://im-geiste.blogspot.com/
Reconciliation Biology http://reconciliationecology.blogspot.com
Scientist Mother http://scientistmother.blogspot.com/
The Urban Birder http://www.theurbanbirder.com/
SES: Science, Education & Society http://sciedsociety.blogspot.com
Not Exactly Rocket Science http://scienceblogs.com/notrocketscience/
Thesis With Children http://kidsndata.blogspot.com
Physics for Girls http://physicsforgirls.blogspot.com
add more in the comments
Oh, I leave you all with a picture of my 'sister' P. Lee, because I'm obviously an Asian-American female because of my last name. I bumped into her at the Women in Science Networking Event.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Okay, so I flew out of St. Louis very early in the a.m. today headed to the long awaited science blogging conference - ScienceOnline09. The weather in St. Louis was cold. So cold in fact that the Rivers were frozen.