Two adult males and a juvenile burro in the Sinbad Herd on the San Rafael Swell

Wild burros on the San Rafael Swell

May 18, 2021

Wild or free roaming burros and horses are protected by Federal Law as "living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West.” A few miles south of the historic swinging bridge crossing the San Rafael River, a group of 10 burrows grazed on a rolling plain beneath hills...

Great Heron

A local great blue heronry provides a natural spectacle

April 13, 2021

Social systems of great blue herons vary dramatically, from solitary nests to large heronries, and some heronries include nests of great egrets and cattle egrets.

Golden-mantled ground squirrels sound an alarm call that warns not only squirrels but marmots as well

Alarm calls share information among species

March 31, 2021

The sharing of vigilance and alarms by golden-mantled ground squirrels and yellow-bellied marmots is not unique.

A great egret in flight

Great egrets grow extravagant plumes for the nesting season

March 18, 2021

Great egrets usually hunt in shallow water, stalking small fish, which they swallow whole.

Clones of aspen with striking colors above Horse Park Ranch

Understories of quaking aspen vary dramatically among habitats

March 2, 2021

An understated characterization of quaking aspen is that it grows in many different plant communities, in many different ways and has adapted to an extremely wide range of environments.

Net winged beetle

Net-winged beetles advertise defenses with brilliant color, noxious odor

Feb. 2, 2021

Trilobite beetles are perhaps the most bizarre of all the net-winged beetles Some insects are cryptic, blending in with their backgrounds to hide from predators, while others are brightly colored, noisy, or form dense and conspicuous aggregations to warn their predators away. Red net-winged beetles, Dictyoptera aurora , are exemplars...

Dusky Grouse

Male dusky grouse are masters of camouflage but dandies on the dance floor

Jan. 6, 2021

Dusky grouse are effectively camouflaged and cryptic much of the year, but when it comes to the spring mating season, the males are bright and bold.

Black Dragon Canyon is deep, narrow and sinuous, and desert varnish darkens the walls.

Controversial interpretations of the Black Dragon Pictograph

Dec. 8, 2020

Evolutionary biologists have found fossil evidence of 110 species of pterosaurs, with wing spans ranging from 10 inches to over 33 feet I scout potential sites for camping and photography trips by looking at maps and reading about landscapes and habitats, so I was optimistic that I had found an...

Shadow of earths belt in venus

Celestial phenomena: STEVE, Belt of Venus, Earth's shadow and the Milky Way

Nov. 30, 2020

With dry air and clear skies, people in the west have much greater opportunity to enjoy the light shows at dawn and dusk and celestial phenomena. Following are comments and details, each starting with a question about mechanisms.

East Troublesome fire

Record heat and extreme drought produced our worst fire season

Nov. 11, 2020

Boulder residents were acutely aware of the wildfires, for they had been breathing smoke since the Pine Gulch fire started near Grand Junction on July 31. But the proximity of the CalWood Fire and the sight of roiling smoke rising and forming pyrocumulus clouds at the northern edge of Boulder brought the terrible threat home.