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Natural Connections

May 19, 2022

“Lakes are cradles for all sorts of babies as they grow up,” I told the group. “How many of you like to play in the mud and water as you grow up wild?” The little ones—only 3 and 4 years old, grinned. One student looked up at his teacher. “I love mud best!” I chuckled in agreement.

Then we all transformed...


May 12, 2022

The robin woke me up again today. He’ll likely be my alarm clock for the rest of the summer as he rushes to raise up to three broods of chicks. Hermit thrushes will soon join the chorus, too. Hopefully, as Thoreau predicted, “whenever he [or she] hears it, it is a new world and a free country.”


May 5, 2022

This week we’ll spy on a bunny.


Apr 28, 2022

As a campfire-poking kid, I love the idea that setting fires has a scientific and ecological purpose. Fire clears out the thick thatch that can smother new sprouts. Black ashes absorb sunshine, warm the soil, and provide prairie plants with an extra boost. Fire is a form of decomposer, and makes nutrients from dead...


Apr 21, 2022

In addition to antibacterial behaviors, turkey vultures have developed excellent immune systems that can ward off and even destroy the microbes that cause botulism, anthrax, cholera, and salmonella. Their stomachs, gross as they may seem, help purify our world. Can you imagine a world in which dead things all...