Who Wants To See a Greater Prairie Chicken?

10,000 Birds

Have you ever seen a Greater Prairie Chicken? Destroy the native prairies and lose Henslow’s Sparrows , Bobolinks , Upland Sandpipers , and Greater Prairie Chickens. In Abraham Lincoln’s day, Prairie Chickens were an incredibly abundant part of the Illinois prairie landscape. Couple that with the fact that Greater Prairie Chickens are either holding on or in decline in all states except Nebraska and the national picture becomes clear. Dawn on the prairie.

Forgotten Prairies

10,000 Birds

Outside of hardcore twitchers looking for specialty birds and after speaking to thousands and thousands of birders, I have concluded that most people really do not put much emphasis on our prairies. Perhaps, this is because we, as Americans, have destroyed nearly every morsel of prairie we have left. Our North American Prairies hold 2/3 of their biomass beneath the soil. While we continue to decimate our short and tall grass prairies many species reach their inevitable peril.


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One Square Meter of Prairie

Nature Conservancy - Science

What can be found in a square meter of prairie? You’ll be surprised. From the Field Natural History Plants Traveling Naturalist

Seeds of Change: Ensuring the Future for Healthy Prairies

Nature Conservancy - Science

For a healthy and resilient prairie, diverse seed sources are key. From the Field Climate Insects & Pollinators Plants TNC Science

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What’s in a Name: Attwater’s Prairie Chicken

10,000 Birds

And then there’s Attwater’s Prairie Chicken. A distinct subspecies of Greater Prairie Chicken that once numbered a million strong and called coastal grasslands from Louisiana to the Mexican border home, it was more than decimated by development in its native habitat, with less than 50 birds left in the wild in 1996. Competition with invasive fire ants for insect food is a major source of mortality for young Attwater’s Prairie Chickens.

Why Did the Prairie Chicken Cross the State?

10,000 Birds

112 got, this radio transmitter nevertheless tells scientists at the Missouri Department of Conservation where this Greater Prairie Chicken is. . And actually, this particular Greater Prairie Chicken crossed two states.) Researchers don’t know if this type of journey is the exception or the rule for Greater Prairie Chickens. The lowest green dot is Dunn Ranch in Harrison County, Missouri, where prairie chickens were also released and are being tracked.

Recovery: Prairie Reprise

Nature Conservancy - Science

America has plowed, developed and otherwise destroyed or degraded vast expanses of native prairie. For generations prairies were seen as deficient in their lack of trees and dangerous in their flammability. Sterling Morton was so distressed by the paucity of trees that in 1870 he called forth “a grand army of husbandmen … to battle against the timberless prairies.” At least we’re no longer anti-prairie. But prairie vegetation evolved with grazing.

Schaefer Prairie Preserve Citizen Science

Nature Conservancy - Science

Morning dew on asters (Aster) at Schaefer Prairie. What is Schaefer Prairie Preserve Citizen Science Project? . Would you like to explore one of the remaining patches of eastern tallgrass prairie and contribute to science? If you live in Minnesota, then you will love the Schaefer Prairie Preserve Citizen Science Project. The early years of the project provide baseline data that can be used to track changes in the prairie over time.

Prairie Dogs and Black Widows

Nature Conservancy - Science

There’s a lot more going on in prairie dog towns than meets the eye. Wildlife Insects Mammals

Could Prairie Chickens Come Booming Back?

Nature Conservancy - Science

Prairie chickens were once so abundant in the Great Plains that they were hunted for the market and shipped by the trainload to New York City. Could prairie restoration bring them booming back? Birds & Birding From the Field Birding Birds Bison Fire Grasslands Native Plants Traveling Naturalist

Bison Good, Cattle Bad? A Prairie Ecologist’s Perspective

Nature Conservancy - Science

By Chris Helzer , prairie ecologist. Among some prairie enthusiasts, there seems to be a perception that plains bison are magical creatures that live in complete harmony with the prairie. Cattle, on the other hand, are evil creatures that seek and destroy wildflowers, removing them from prairies forever. They also stomp all over prairies, trampling plants and birds to death and causing cascades of soil erosion and water pollution.

Tracking Little Turtles on the Prairie

Nature Conservancy - Science

What do you do if you only have 8 known Blanding’s turtles in the population you’re studying at Illinois’s Nachusa Grasslands Preserve? Get out the hoop traps and the sardines. From the Field NatureTech Wildlife Field Notes Herps Protected Areas Research Technology

Hope on the Prairie: The Black-Footed Ferret Returns to Colorado

Nature Conservancy - Science

Take, for instance, my recent experience helping reintroduce black-footed ferrets to their historic home on eastern Colorado’s prairie. Entirely dependent on prairie dogs for survival, ferrets were largely the unintended victim of widespread prairie dog extermination campaigns and introduced diseases. Training programs put young ferrets through prairie dog hunting “boot camps;” if they learn to hunt, they’ll be eligible for release.

Prairie Falcon Attack on a Northern Shoveler

10,000 Birds

On 11 November 2012 I was leaving Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake after a fruitless morning of trying to photograph birds in a snowstorm and poor light when a female Prairie Falcon ambushed this Northern Shoveler on the water not far from the causeway on which I was driving. Ron Dudley is an amazing nature photographer who is based in northern Utah.

Why Grassland Birds are Poor Indicators of Prairie Quality

Nature Conservancy - Science

Henslow’s sparrows are a bird of conservation concern and their presence in a prairie can be seen as a conservation success. However, although they tend to require fairly large prairies, and can indicate the presence of certain vegetation structure types, they don’t indicate whether or not a prairie has a diverse plant or insect community. First and foremost, species have to survive and reproduce in order to persist in a prairie.

To save bees, city plans 1,000 acres of prairie

Green (Living) Review

Midwest, one city in Iowa is launching an ambitious plan to rebuild their prairie habitat. " Some big changes are needed to solve a problem this big, like curbing the use of bee-killing insecticides, studying the threat of invasive varroa mites and restoring native prairies, whose wildflowers offer key bee habitat. As vital pollinators decline across the U.S. It's generally a bad time to be a bee in the United States.

Tracking a Secretive Snake on the Prairie

Nature Conservancy - Science

Researchers at the Chippewa Prairie in Minnesota are using radio telemetry to provide a better picture of the lives of one of the most secretive and little-known creatures of grasslands: the plains hog-nosed snake (also known as the western hog-nosed snake). Researchers are monitoring various wildlife to see how the species respond to the burning and grazing regime on the prairie. Researchers check cover boards for snakes at Chippewa Prairie. Big Snake on the Prairie.

Bison Bellows and Bones: Student-Scientists on the Prairie

Nature Conservancy - Science

Michelle Hulke (left) and Mary Joy Sun, student bison researchers from Gustavus Adolphus College, collect bones on the prairie to reassemble a bison skeleton. Ordway Prairie Preserve, students from Gustavus Adolphus College will soon be arriving to follow bison herds for the summer. Today, we’re running a previously published blog on last year’s student researchers at Ordway Prairie. Ordway Prairie Preserve , a 7,800-acre grassland property near Leola.

A Treasure Hunt for Prairie Wildflowers

Nature Conservancy - Science

The Tallgrass Aspen Parklands is on the northern edge of the tallgrass prairie. Only a small portion of prairie plants make it so far north. Further complicating matters is that human activities, such as farming, have destroyed most of the prairie, and have altered most of the rest. This leaves our prairie scientists with an interesting question: is a plant rare in the area due to the range issue, or is it rare due to the fact that people have made it a tough place to live?

Zumwalt Prairie: Mountain Lions, Mountain Quail & More

Nature Conservancy - Science

A black bear stands amongst the expansive grasslands and canyons of Zumwalt Prairie Preserve. The Zumwalt Prairie of northeastern Oregon is one of those spectacular places where the large herds still roam, where big predators still stalk, where you never know what you might see on a hike. The Zumwalt Prairie is the largest remaining Palouse grassland in North America. You can view more Zumwalt Prairie photos on Flickr.

Bison, Pioneers of the Prairie, Return to Kankakee Sands

Nature Conservancy - Science

Over the past 20 years The Nature Conservancy in Indiana has been converting 6,700 acres of row-crop agriculture at Kankakee Sands into a diverse prairie. The goal – to restore key prairie habitat and connectivity for wildlife. In October of 2016, 23 bison from South Dakota were released on the prairie in Kankakee Sands. Related Articles. Conserving Bison in Indiana. Yes, Indiana. By Matt Miller. The Incredible Shrinking Bison, an Unexpected Impact of Climate Change.

Allow me to tell you a little story about Prairie Dogs not getting Poisoned to Death, hopefully.

Elephant Journal

Prairie dogs are cute and don’t get people sick and don’t hurt cows or horses (that’s a rural myth). Main Categories* Enlightened Society Green WAYLON: Today Only Activism Martin Luther King non-violence prairie dogs protestAggressive Activism floods Instagram, Facebook, comments in social media, Twitter. It doesn’t work. Allow me to tell you a little story.

Space Cowboys: A New Generation of Prairie Keepers

Nature Conservancy - Science

How many cows can you graze and maintain a healthy prairie? These are important questions for ranchers and scientists interested in sustainably supporting cattle and protecting prairie habitat for wildlife. That’s why The Nature Conservancy in Oregon is partnered with other private landowners, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the University of Idaho to use satellites to monitor vegetation cover on the Zumwalt Prairie.

Wood-Warbler Haiku 7

10,000 Birds

Funky face pattern, Bobbing tail, ascending song: A Prairie Warbler. Inspiration haiku poetry prairie warbler wood-warblers

2015 136

The Benefits of a Native Prairie Garden

Eco Friendly Daily

If your thoughts are turning to spring, you may want to consider planting a native prairie garden rather than one filled with exotic plants. One of the primary advantages of planting a native prairie garden is that your garden will be filled with flora that is adapted to your area’s specific conditions. Once a prairie garden is established, you should not water it. Prairie plants in the right location have a competitive edge over non-native plants.

The benefits of hurricanes in Southeast Arizona

10,000 Birds

What I consider to be the best bird of the week came in the arrival at Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, a Prairie Warbler. I slowly approached the small thicket alongside the visitor center, and in less than 60 seconds, the very first bird to hop up onto a nearby branch was this very Prairie Warbler. Here is last weeks Prairie Warbler! Birding Buenos Aires NWR prairie warbler Southeast Arizona Birding

Product Review: Prairie Organic Spirits

Green Living Ideas

Green Living Ideas was recently sent some organic gin and cucumber vodka from Prairie Organics. Prairie is a truly sustainable company, working with land, farmers and community to create high-quality artisanal spirits. Based in Minnesota, Prairie Organics works with family farms to grow the highest quality corn to turn into lovely, flavorful gin and vodka. File under: I love my job.

Elk Antlers on the Prairie: A Shed Hunt to Benefit the Local Community

Nature Conservancy - Science

Rolling prairie dotted with beautiful wildflowers, with towering snow-capped peaks in the background. I’m at The Nature Conservancy’s Zumwalt Prairie Preserve in northeast Oregon for what has become an annual event: a search for antlers shed by bull elk each spring. Lots of Elk on the Prairie. Zumwalt Prairie: Mountain Lions, Mountain Quail & More. Typical scenery at the Conservancy’s Zumwalt Prairie Preserve in Oregon. Antlers on the prairie.

Back Battle on the Booming Grounds

10,000 Birds

The Greater Prairie Chicken , once common throughout North America, has undergone rapid population decline, mostly due to habitat loss. The tallgrass prairie that once blanketed the Midwest has been almost completely converted to cropland, leaving Tympanuchus cupido painfully vulnerable. The Greater Prairie Chicken’s story seems to be a tragic one, but Timothy Barksdale sees something compelling in it. Birds prairie chickens prairies video

2011 153

The Yucca and its Moth

Nature Conservancy - Science

Read more of Chris Helzer’s writings at The Prairie Ecologist blog, where this post originally appeared. . Insects Plants Science Chris Helzer Chris Helzer Nature Conservancy Grasslands moth pollinators moths natural history Niobrara Valley Preserve pollinators prairie prairie ecologist prairie ecology prairie insects prairie natural history prairie plants prairie science yucca

Caught in the Act: Girl, Interrupted. ~ Prairie Pritchett

Elephant Journal

I was on a walk with a girlfriend. We were in what I thought was a break of silence between conversations that is, until she asked me,“Where are you right now?”. Blog (always click 4 all blogs) Free Content to Partners Health & Wellness Non-New-Agey Spirituality (Religion, Philosophy) Z ADMIN Spirituality Featured Today Z ADMIN Wellness Featured Today happiness healing health health wellness meditation mindfulness spirituality

Winter Mission

10,000 Birds

And not far from that scene was my personal highlight of the day, when my life Prairie Falcon swooped across the road, circled back, and came over the car only a few feet above my head, then perched with prey and let us all observe her clearly for several minutes. A second Prairie Falcon just up the road – this one a young male – gave even better, closer looks. Birding Mission valley Prairie falcon raptors

2014 181

Birding and Butterflying North Carolina Gamelands

10,000 Birds

Prairie Warbler. Sure enough, the bird popped up a few minutes later on a young tree with no leaves, allowing me to see in perfect detail my very first Prairie Warbler ! Trips butterflies migration North Carolina prairie warbler I don’t know if you have ever tried to bird with a cold, but it’s not easy. All your senses are dulled, which makes finding one of those fast-flitting warblers or other songbirds especially difficult.

Introducing the Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge

10,000 Birds

Russell National Wildlife Refuge , more than a million acres of prairie, badlands, coulees, and the massive Fort Peck Reservoir on the Missouri River. Our small group spent a weekend at the Ferret Research Camp, a cluster of trailers tucked in the middle of a black-tailed prairie dog town and the site, as the name implies, of a black-footed ferret reintroduction program. Here I would see how spring comes to the American prairie. Destinations Charles M Russell NWR prairies

Cecil the lion’s final photograph, thanks to “Walter J. Palmer, an Eden Prairie man with a Bloomington dental practice” & Theo Bronkhorst.

Elephant Journal

For the full photo, click here. Here’s the actual last photo, thanks to Walter J. Palmer: This gentleman defines selfishness. “Cecil was a famous 13 year old lion, being tracked via GPS collar and was involved in a wildlife study out of Oxford University. It is, I believe, illegal to kill a GPS collared lion. […]. WAYLON: Today Only

Climate Change and the Future of Bison

Nature Conservancy - Science

The climate of Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in Oklahoma is 17°F hotter than at Cross Ranch in North Dakota. For example, a 7-year old male bison at Ordway Prairie in South Dakota weighs, on average, 1,900 lbs. To understand how hotter climates are likely to affect bison, researcher Joe Craine recently led a study that synthesized weights of bison from Nature Conservancy herds as well as a number of other federal, state and private herds. Photo: Matt Miller/TNC.

Spring’s Top 10 Wildlife Spectacles

Nature Conservancy - Science

Six species of prairie grouse – greater and lesser prairie chickens , greater and Gunnison sage grouse , and sharp-tailed grouse – display in flat, open areas, offering excellent viewing. North America has a great diversity of ground squirrels and other members of the squirrel family: 66 species including tree squirrels, flying squirrels, chipmunks, marmots and prairie dogs. The Conservancy has bison on a dozen preserves across many prairie states.

My Mother’s greatest Gift to Me.

Elephant Journal

Blog (always click 4 all blogs) courage death grief memories mother resilience strength The Little House on the PrairieI sit and look back on my time with my mother. 15 plus years since that night with the blue and red lights.

2015 80

Rare Butterflies Return Home

Nature Conservancy - Science

This summer 200 federally threatened Dakota skippers emerged as butterflies and were reintroduced to a Minnesota prairie. From the Field Wildlife Endangered Species Grasslands Insects Pollinators Restoration

A McMansion Builder Tries Zero Energy Building

Green Living Ideas

Like many a true business breakthrough, Prairie Ridge Homes, a new subdivision of net zero energy homes, grew out of disaster. Tags: Green Building/Remodeling building subdivisions greenbuilding Illinois Jim Regan McMansions net zero energy New Lenox Phil Regan Prairie Ridge Homes The traditional builder, Phil Reagan of saw a sharp drop-off in buyers of his traditional McMansion-model subdivisions after the worst recession since the depression.

2010 74

Sustainable Spring Coats for Times of Transition

Eco Chic

The Moth Raincoat from Prairie Underground serves to keep you both warm and dry. Fair Fashion antiform coats eco fashion jackets Nau prairie underground spring sustainableSpring! Where one day you need just a light jacket (or heavy sweater) and the next you’re pulling your winter coat out—again. It’s a time to be prepared with something perfectly kick-ass that is both comfortable and warm enough, but still has plenty of style.

Get Inspired with Sweatshop-Free, Sustainable Spring 2014 Eco Fashion

Eco Chic

This one in organic cotton Body Armor vest from Prairie Underground will wear for years; I’m still wearing the first hoodie I bought from the company almost 5 years ago. Fair Fashion 2014 Dolan dresses eco fashion feral childe Gudrun Sjödén Lina Rennell organic cotton prairie underground silk spring Tencel I know we are all SO ready for spring this year! And it’s officially April (I can hear everyone out there breathing a sigh of relief; FINALLY!).

2014 50

Best Bird of the Weekend (Third of September 2020)

10,000 Birds

On a nineteen warbler morning, Prairie Warbler stood out for me because I never get to see them upstate. Every weekend seems to be wild from the perspective of human history. To every bird, though, mid-September remains what it’s always been: a good time to feed, mass, and move !

2020 220