‘Arb Sightings’ Category

Chorus frog courtship is noisy ‘affair’

The temperature’s rising, the days are getting longer, the buds are swelling, and the critters are emerging from hibernation.  Spring is nearly here, and with it comes the annual performance of the chorus frog (Pseudoacris triseriata).  But, despite the fact that chorus frogs are common statewide, there’s a good chance that you’ve never seen one.  […]

 

Warming Temps and the Return of the Robin

The warm weather has the snowing running away and the birds back out to play! This latest wave of warmer temperatures has many people excited for the possibility of spring. With the current seven-day forecast, it may just look like spring is well on its way as temps stay between the mid-30s to 40s all […]

 

Where did all the Sparrows come from?

The House Sparrow (passer domesticus) originated in the Middle East. These little birds managed to make their throughout Eurasia and into Northern Africa. It was introduced to North American in 1851 in Brooklyn, New York and quickly spread like wildfire. Because of the sparrow’s adaptions to living in urban areas and around people, it has […]

The Winter Life of Black-Capped Chickadees

After the summer bird species have migrated south for the winter, the black-capped chickadee (Parus atricapillus) remains present around the arboretum and a year-round favorite to many birders. Their energetic and curious behaviors make them one of my favorite species to observe. I can almost always rely on them to be active during any part […]

Insights From a Fall Tree

Maple leaf Falling down Showing front Showing back -Ryokan, Japanese Zen poet It is officially autumn. The birds and squirrels are busy creating caches of seeds for the winter, the grasshoppers are busily eating all the grass, and the leaves are changing color. I know that a lot of people have mixed feelings about this […]

 

Hummingbird Moths, Interpreting the Fall Arboretum Landscape

The following is a submission from a Gustavus student in Dr. Cindy Johnson’s “Interpreting the Fall Landscape” class held in the Arboretum.  Special thanks to Dr. Johnson and her students…..   Hummingbird Moths by Jessica Gold I spotted 4 hummingbird moths in a flower bed on 9/24 at 6:15 pm. They were hovering around the […]

 

Cup Plant — Interpreting the Fall Arboretum Landscape

The following is a submission from a Gustavus student in Dr. Cindy Johnson’s “Interpreting the Fall Landscape” class held in the Arboretum.  Special thanks to Dr. Johnson and her students…..   Cup Plants By Carrie Boike   Cup Plant, Silphium perfoliatum ·         Native to North America ·         Perennial ·         Triangular Toothed Leaf ·          opposite leaf […]

The power of unintended consequences

Last spring, we decided to add a bird feeder to a small garden area outside of the Interpretive Center.  Two or three months ago, a bird at that feeder (through haste or carelessness) dropped a sunflower seed and it started to grow.   When I suggested that we pull it as a weed (after all, it […]

 

Fall color forecast looks good… maybe.

Autumn in Minnesota is a time of cruel ironies. Any Vikings fan can tell you that. One of autumn’s cruelest ironies is that the beauty of autumn is quickly replaced with the general crumminess of winter. And so, we have all learned to appreciate the fleeting beauty of the changing of the autumn leaves while […]

 

Monarchs Still Holding On!

Earlier this week, I noticed three Monarch Butterflies fluttering outside our windows at the Interpretive Center. They seemed to be having a ball, enjoying the colorful flower gardens. Monarchs, as most of us may know begin as caterpillars. As caterpillars, they must eat constantly in order to grow big enough, fast enough to turn themselves […]