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Natural Connections

Jan 27, 2022

This week a stack of old books revealed a treasure. Bound in blue cloth with gold writing, “Sharp Eyes: A Rambler’s Calendar of Fifty-Two Weeks among Insects, Birds, and Flowers,” written by William Hamilton Gibson in 1891, offered delightfully verbose descriptions of a walk in nature. In the WINTER section,...

Jan 20, 2022

Wolves are common in the Northwoods, even if we rarely see them. That’s why Naturalist Emily Stone was thrilled to find big wolf tracks on her driveway, and plenty of wolf sign in her woods. From cozy wolf beds, to a trail filled with raised leg urinations, there’s lots to learn from tracking her new neighbors.

Jan 13, 2022

Least weasels are the world’s smallest carnivores. With long skinny bodies, they hunt little mammals under the snow, in that magical space we call the subnivean zone. From North Africa to northern Russia, and even here in Wisconsin, these tiny predators stealthily reduce our populations of mice and voles, all...

Jan 6, 2022

Sledding is one of Naturalist Emily Stone’s favorite winter activities. She’s not alone. Otters, bears, and even ravens and crows also enjoy sliding down hills on snow. Scientists know that play, including sliding, is somehow connected to young animals surviving longer. Playtime might even help adults reduce stress...