We were in Trinidad to “bird.” Yes, the verb of the word bird: to look for birds. It was our last vacation before the coronavirus pandemic. Trinidad is an independent republic and the southernmost island in the Caribbean Sea, lying just seven miles off Venezuela’s coast. It is one of...
The House Sparrow is perhaps the most adaptable and prolific bird species on the planet. Often called English Sparrow, its scientific name Passer domesticus is Latin for small, active bird belonging to the house. It is native to Europe and has spread to all corners of the world. Its adaptation follows...
Winter in Swoope The grasslands in Swoope are brown and dormant. Late in the afternoon I stand on our deck with my binoculars and search the wide-open pastures for Short-eared Owls. I can see for several miles north and sweep slowly 180 degrees to the south. First, I spot a...
“If you save your own backyard, then you start to save the world,” wrote the late Winston Nanon, the man who saved the Caroni Swamp and the bird that became the national bird of Trinidad—the Scarlet Ibis.
Note: The text version of this post was published in the News-Leader and distributed by the USA Today Network on 8/15/19. Dominion and Duke Energy lost yet another federal permit to build the ill-conceived Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP). For the second time, the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated...
The Ash tree is one of the most important riparian plants in North America. In Eastern North America there are, or were, three common species in the Fraxinus genus, the White, Green, and Black Ash. In the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, Green Ash is one of the most prolific trees along...
This is the place . . . Swoope. I wrote a book about it . . . Swoope Almanac, Stories of love, land, and water in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley.
Jeanne and I recently traveled to the most remote island of the British Virgin Islands—Anegada. Most mornings, we were the only people on the beach at the Anegada Beach Club. The beaches here are the most beautiful we have ever experienced with white sand and crystal clear water loaded with...
Shen Valley Magazine is hot off the press and can be found in many outlets throughout the readership area. It is a quarterly, lifestyle publication about the culture and community of the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Jessie Knadler, editor of Shen Valley magazine asked me to write an article for...
I watched it devour a whole nest of tent caterpillars. Yellow-billed Cuckoos, we need a lot more of them – they prefer to eat hairy caterpillars like the eastern tent caterpillar that defoliate trees. The Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Coccyzus americanus, sometimes called the rain crow, nests and forages in the riparian forests along our...
Four Factors is an inspiring and educational guide for environmental activism. As a student and up and coming environmentalist, I think it is an incomparable resource for future environmental battles.
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