Whitetail Deer in the Backyard

A Whitetail Doe settling down

It’s kinda cool to see whitetail deer in an urban or suburban area. Even though you’re in the city, having some wild creatures stop by once in awhile provides a feeling of being in a more natural world. (more…)

Why is a Dragonfly important?

Common Whitetail dragonfly

A solitary dragonfly is an indicator animal. That means that his presence or absence tells us something about the quality of our environment. When dragonflies are plentiful, we know that nearby ponds are healthy. In order to provide a home for breeding dragonflies, the water must be clean, with growing plants, which in turn provides the oxygen needed for all the aquatic creatures from water bugs to frogs and turtles. Ancient people, who were finely tuned to the environment, were well aware of this relationship. One example would be Navajo culture, where dragonflies symbolized pure water. (more…)

A Few North American Raptors

North American Raptor - Broad Winged Hawk

I’ve got a few interesting North American Raptors to talk about this week. Both are common in the eastern United States. Raptors are fascinating to me for several reasons. First, they are at the top of the food chain, mostly predators, but sometimes scavengers. And they are lineal descendants of the most famous dinosaurs that every young boy loves. Whether you’re talking about Tyrannosaurs or Velociraptor, these are about the scariest creatures that ever lived. Their very distant relatives are still with us and the Raptors evoke those images. That “predator look” is also what makes them great subjects to photograph. (more…)