Author Archives: hw7

Signs of Fall 7: More on Bees!

(Click here for an audio version of this blog!) When we say the word “bee” we probably have in mind the larger members of the seven families and 20,000 species that are classified as “bees.” Honeybees and bumblebees are the … Continue reading

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Signs of Fall 6: Changing Leaves

(Click here for an audio version of this blog!) I am waiting for the leaves to fall en mass from my trees. It is an event that occurs about the same time each year (sometime after Columbus Day but before … Continue reading

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Signs of Fall 5: Roundworms in the Park

(Click here to listen to an audio version of this post!) “Roundworm” is another name for “nematode.” When you consider that every pinch of topsoil contains dozens to hundreds of individual nematodes, and that every living vertebrate and invertebrate animal … Continue reading

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Signs of Fall 4: Giant Hogweed!

(Click here for an audio version of this blog) Hiking on the woodland trails or across the old fields of Harrison Hills Park (or almost anywhere, for that matter) you see a familiar array of plants. It is quite startling … Continue reading

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Signs of Fall 3: Cavity Nesting Team, Year Four Completed

(Click here for an audio version of this blog!) The Cavity Nesting Team has completed its 2018 observation season up at Harrison Hills Park in northern Allegheny County. This year we had twenty-nine nesting boxes scattered across the park. Our … Continue reading

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Signs of Fall 2: Observations

(Click here to listen to an audio version of this blog!) It was raining quite hard tho other morning. In fact it had been raining hard for the three days before. One day we got almost four inches of rain! … Continue reading

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Signs of Fall 1: Three Trees in Colorado

(Click to listen to an audio version of this blog) Deborah and I went out to Colorado a few weeks ago to visit our daughter and her husband in Greeley. Our son and his girlfriend also joined us, and we … Continue reading

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Signs of Summer 13: Electric Spiders!

(Click to access an audible version of this blog) (I want to thank Robert Steffes who passed along a recent Atlantic Monthly article about the electrical nature of spider’s webs. That article led to the development of this post). Deborah … Continue reading

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Signs of Summer 12: Biocontrol of Insects

(Click to access an audio version of this blog!) About a year ago (Signs of Spring 13, May 13, 2017) I wrote about the proposed use of the CRISPR gene editing system and a “gene drive” replication amplification system to … Continue reading

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Signs of Summer 11: The Biology of Smell

(Click to access an audible version of this blog) Almost every living organism can detect chemicals in its environment. From our large, complexly structured, vertebrate perspective, we call this chemosensory ability the “sense of smell” (or, more precisely, “olfaction”). The … Continue reading

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