Monthly Archives: April 2017

Weekly Puzzler #146: Another Mimic

Hey all and happy weekend to you! It’s amazing that this is the last weekend of April and we’re only two days away from May.

As you likely know, last week’s puzzler was a Northern Mockingbird, a wonderful mimic of bird and frog songs. Here’s another mimic–see if you can determine the difference between the mockingbird and this one. What bird is it?

Check back next weekend to learn the answer. And as always, use the comment box below to offer your guess. All correct answers will be entered in a drawing for a free photo prize from me–given away on the first day of summer. You have to be in it to win it! Good luck. See you again soon.

Weekly Puzzler Answer #145

Did you recognize the insistent calls in last week’s puzzler as ambird-2 Northern Mockingbird? If you’ve ever had one of these in your yard, looking for a mate, you know how persistent they can be!

They are masters at mimicking the calls of other birds, from robins, to blue jays, to towhees and everything in between. A male in his territory will repeat a bird call–say an American robin–2-6 times before switching to another bird’s call. They may go on for 10-15 different bird songs. They will also mimic frog songs, and some even mimic human-made sounds like doors opening or car alarms. They are really amazing when they get on a roll!

Watch this bird, which I captured recently at The North Carolina Arboretum, going through his repertoire of sounds:

Here’s the next puzzler, another bird song you may have heard while you were outside enjoying the sounds and sights of spring.

Have a great weekend and see you again soon!

Weekly Photo Challenge #4

So last week’s photo challenge was SPRING. Thanks to those who sent in some images to add to the slide slow!  Isn’t this a great time of year! Let’s look at some of this week’s slides:

In Germany, by ArdenDogwood, by RoseViolets, By BarbaraOpeninBuds, by BarbaraYellow Trillium in W. Asheville, by ArdenFiddlehead heartBy RoseIn Germany, by ArdenIn Germany, by ArdenBloodroot, By BarbaraRed budsPinkAzaleaRedbudsPetalsArt in one dropTulipsMay appleFramed in pinkMy backyardDrop of rain on DogwoodBrand newBeautiful VeinsFoggy ForestIn Biltmore gardensHerald of spring--a spring peeper!DropsCurvesHoneybeeCherry blossomMagnolia blossomDogwoodAzaleaRed and pinkFirst flowersNew leavesTiger swallowtail

Speaking of spring, if you live in western North Carolina, here’s a special invitation for you to come out and join me this Friday for our first Game Night. On the last Friday of each month  I am going to be hosting a unique version of Jeopardy–a game night for adults! The focus will be getting together with some new friends, having fun, and learning something about the monthly topic–this month it is Signs of Spring. Have you ever watched Jeopardy on TV? Well my version will be just like the TV version–up on the “big screen” with lots of animation to keep it interesting. There will be photos, and sounds and lots of great interaction.

You don’t have to be a nature whiz or a walking encyclopedia!! You just have to enjoy having fun!

Won’t you come out and join us? To learn more and to RESERVE your spot, see my Meetup Page.

Next week’s photo challenge is: SKY TV

tv-That’s the title of this image which I took on the first day of my 5+month thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. Do you think it’s a good title? How will you interpret that? Send in your images to my email at sharenaturemore@gmail.com, then tune in on Wednesday to see the collection! Have fun looking UP for GREAT examples of SKY TV!

See you again soon. Have a great week!

1 Minute Meditation: Water Art

Okay, so maybe not everyone loves rainy days and maybe you’ve never looked in the water for art–in which case, this video’s for you!

Stop what you’re doing. Set the To-do list aside. Clear your mind of clutter. Then take time for this one minute video–a bit of peace in your day.

Imagine you’re sitting beside this body of water, watching as the patterns on the water dance back and forth. Then later, a gentle rains falls on the surface of a creek, the drops making circles on the water’s surface beneath a flowering dogwood, bursting with white flowers. Watching them is mesmerizing!

Let me know what you think of this one minute meditation.

Weekly Puzzler Answer #144

Did you know last week’s bubbling bird song? If you’ve been reading my blog for a while now, you’ve probably read posts about this bird. It’s one of my favorites–the Carolina Wren.

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One of my favorite posts of all time was about the wren–called 4 Things we can learn from Carolina Wrens. 

This baby wren keeps falling asleep!

This baby wren keeps falling asleep!

Another post I like is about surprise gift that I found one day when I was tidying up for visitors–called a gift from wrens and still another, this one a weekly quote about resilience and telling the story of wrens that nested in our yard. And then ONE more! about a wren making me smile.  (Because he kept falling asleep even though he was supposed to be fledging)

You can attract wrens to your hanging a bird feeder, especially one like this* that has room for suet. (Here’s a recipe for making your own suet, though putting it out in the hot months of the year is not recommended)

I hope they make you smile, and that you enjoy your Sunday. See you again soon.

 

Weekly Puzzler #145: Name that Bird!

So last week’s puzzler was a bird song–one of our most lovely, the Carolina Wren. I thought I would do another bird, this one common throughout much of North America, especially the southeast, and west to California. If this bird hasn’t found a mate, it might get desperate–much to the dismay of homeowners everywhere– and sing in the middle of the night–not bothering to wait until sunrise.

Listen here. Then give your guess using the comment box below.

Happy Earth Day!

Hey all, Happy Earth Day to you! And happy Saturday and weekend too. It’s not every year that Earth Day falls on a weekend, but when it does, it is nice. Here is a post I wrote another year, about the history of Earth Day and also some things YOU can do to make a difference.

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Saturday is usually the day I do my puzzler, but I am going to hold off on that until tomorrow. Did you know that as Earth Day is being celebrated, there will be more than 500 locations around the world where people will be marching in support of Science?

Why are all these people getting together for Science?  And why on Earth Day?

Because a really lot is at stake, not just for the United States, but for the world.

What we do here impacts the world and other countries expect us to set a high bar and then uphold it.

Scientists agree that the climate of the earth is changing. Our clean water and clean air are something we take for granted. But what if 5 decades of environmental progress is taken away with one executive order? What if our precious National Parks are opened up to mining or drilling for oil? What if pesticides that have been deemed dangerous by dedicated scientists are allowed again? What if the chemicals from fracking are allowed to pollute our waters? What if the very institutions that we depend on to keep the water and air clean are eliminated? What if the research scientists have worked on for decades, is no longer being funded, or worse, erased?

Despite what some think, this is not a political issue. It doesn’t matter if you are a Republican, a Democrat, an Independent or other, these decisions have the potential to affect you and generations to come.

From the Science March website: “Scientists work to build a better understanding of the world around us.

Science is a process, not a product — a tool of discovery that allows us to constantly expand and revise our knowledge of the universe. In doing so, science serves the interests of all humans, not just those in power.

We recognize that inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility in science are critical to ensure that science reaches its potential to serve all communities. We must protect the rights of every person to engage with, learn from, and help shape science, free from manipulation by special interests.”

Science is part of our daily lives. For instance, did you know without SCIENCE we would have none of these things?

  • Medicines that keep us healthy
    • antibiotics
    • insulin
    • vaccines
  • cell phone
  • alarm clock
  • tv
  • computers
  • the internet
  • radio
  • photography
  • weather reports
  • clean water
  • clean air to breathe
  • food
  • electricity
  • cars
  • dental floss
  • plastic
  • organ transplants
  • transportation, from buses,cars,trains, airplanes,boats, etc
  • newspapers
  • fans and air-conditioning
  • heat

Of course this is only a small list, but you get the idea! I am going to be spending my Earth Day marching in support of Science…. how you will spend yours? What does Earth Day mean to you?

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As always, I’d love to hear from you! Use the comment box below to tell me your thoughts.

See you tomorrow for the puzzler!