Following John Muir’s Footsteps in the Petrified Forest

October 30, 2013. Just after the death of his wife Louie Strenzel Muir in August, 1905, seeking to escape his grief and find relief for his youngest daughter Helen’s tuberculosis, John Muir travelled with his daughters to eastern Arizona. They settled
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Searching the Black Forest for Fire Scars on Halloween

October 31st, 2013. In my last story I described how my dad and I found a piece of a fossil tree trunk thirty years ago with what turned out to be the first fossil fire scar ever reported or described. I
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Fire Scar on a Triassic Tree

November 2013. Fire scars on trees have fascinated me since I first learned to recognize them.  Maybe because of their metaphorical quality: fire burns through the forest, but this tree survives with only part of its bark burned and cambium killed.
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Peregrination to Cape May for Hawks and Monarchs

October 14th, 2013. This was my annual pilgrimage to Cape May, New Jersey, which I’ve written about in past years.  I call it a “pilgrimage,” because it is a journey – although not too far, really – that for me has
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Turtle Beaches on the Gulf of Fonseca

September 2013. The Olive Ridley, Lepidochelys olivacea, the smallest of the sea turtles, comes ashore to lay eggs on the Pacific beaches of the Honduran Golfo de Fonseca. September is the peak nesting month. We wanted to see them if we
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Ecohydrology of the Honduran Highlands

September 2013. A few months ago, preparing for an assessment of climate change adaptation and biodiversity conservation in Honduras, I was googling my way through the landscape of information that these days appears in response to any search of key words. 
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A Sunday on Cerro Guanacaure, Honduras

August 2013. We left the rambling, hacienda-like Hotel Gualiqueme in the dark at 5:15 AM, and crossed the long suspension bridge over the Río Choluteca, heading east toward the border with Nicaragua. But we soon turned north, passing through the little
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Callas, Skunk Cabbages, and the World’s Biggest Flower

July 2013. I’ve always loved the look of arums, those lovely flowers of the family Araceae, with their hoods and stalks, spathes and spadixes. Many people are familiar with them because of the common indoor plantings of “peace lilies,” various
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Colorado Fires and Firemoths

June 2013. Forest fires along the Front Range of Colorado are making the national news already this year.  The Black Forest fire between Denver and Colorado Springs, finally contained on June 20th after burning 14,000 acres, was the most destructive fire
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It’s A Strange Courage You Give Me, Ancient Crabs

Call it “eco-poetic license.” Here is a sequel to my last story, “Annual Pilgrimage to the Delaware Bay in May.” Continuing the “ecology of mind” theme, these are more imagistic and poetic reflections of those trips in past years. May
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