The back yard as fieldwork site

Heliconius charithonia (Zebra Heliconian). Boca Raton, FL, June 19, 2012.

I devote a lot of space on this blog to explaining the names of the animals I encounter in my backyard. I do this in part because I think the etymology helps tell us a little something of the character of the animal (or at least of the animal that named it), and in part because it’s how I was trained (my PhD is in literature, after all). But I never forget that there is more to the creature than its name, and that it’s its natural history, not its name, that makes the animal important.

Hal White, author of [...]

Thunder Moon: July 3, 2012

July 3, 2012 Full moon

July’s full moon is sometimes known as the Thunder Moon. No thunder tonight here in Boca, apart from a few wiseacres testing their squibs for tomorrow’s celebration of Independence Day. But we do have plenty of moisture in the air, robbing my pictures of clarity. Nevertheless, here is this month’s full moon: