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Natural History Wanderings


While sifting through fossil soils in the Catskill region near Cairo, New York, researchers uncovered the extensive root system of 385-million-year-old trees that already appeared to have leaves and wood. The finding is the first piece of evidence that the transition toward forests as we know them today began earlier in the Devonian Period than typically believed.

Read full story at 385-million-year-old forest discovered — ScienceDaily

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Well worth watching again, even if you’ve already seen it…

Dear Kitty. Some blog

This July 2017 video from the USA says about itself:

How wolves saved Yellowstone national park

Truly remarkable story of why wolves are so important to an ecosystem.

From Oregon State University in the USA:

Reintroduction of wolves tied to return of tall willows in Yellowstone National Park

May 28, 2020

The reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone National Park is tied to the recovery of tall willows in the park, according to a new Oregon State University-led study.

Wolves were reintroduced to the park in 1995. The new study shows their predation on elk is a major reason for an increase in the height of willows in northern Yellowstone, said Luke Painter, a wildlife ecologist at Oregon State University and lead author on the study.

There’s been a debate among scientists over the degree to which willows may have recovered from decades of suppression by elk following the restoration…

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Juvenile Crimson Rosella~

This red head,

blue cheek,

friendly baby,

will grow into,

a pure scarlet beauty.

Cheers to you from the baby rosella in Oz~

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I know these dates sound very imaginative, but I found it interesting anyway…

Nilesh Nilkanth Oak

From school days we have been taught that the Vedic period of Indian history starts at somewhere around 1500BC. This information is so drilled in our heads that its difficult to think of indian civilization beyond this timeframe.

I was recently reading(I am still reading) the book “Historic Rama” by Nilesh Nilkanth Oak and towards the end of the book is an extremely interesting note on Agasti and Lopamudra – key contributors to the Rigveda. The hypothesis was to estimate the phenomenon widely known, shared and read as “Agasti Crossing Vindhya and going south”.

This may correspond to either
a. The star itself moving in a southern direction.
b. A person named Agasti(in this case Rishi Agastya) moving south of the Vindhyas to stumble on one of the brightest stars not visible north of the VIndhyas and thereby the star getting the name of the person.

I highly encourage everyone…

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B.B. Lal

Divya A.“Archaeological investigations at Ayodhya had clearly established that there was a temple at the site before the construction of the mosque, and we were happy that the Supreme Court took due notice of this fact in pronouncing its judgment.” – B.B. Lal

On May 2, India’s senior-most archaeologist and Padma Bhushan awardee B.B. Lal entered his 100th year. Lal, who is actively involved in archaeological research and writing even at 99, was trained by Sir Mortimer Wheeler at Taxila in 1944, after which he joined the Archaeological Survey of India and served as its Director-General from 1968 to 1972. Delhi-based Lal also served on various UNESCO committees. In a career spanning over five decades, Lal excavated several important landmark sites, including Hastinapura (Utttar Pradesh), Sisupalgarh (Odisha), Purana Qila (Delhi) and Kalibangan (Rajasthan). From 1975-76 onwards, Lal investigated sites like Ayodhya, Bharadvaja Ashrama, Sringaverapura, Nandigrama and Chitrakoota under his Archaeology of…

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Natural History Wanderings

Doug Tallamy is an ecologist who is currently the hot speaker in the world of native plants, birding and habitat gardening. He talks about that we don’t have enough natural vegetation in protected areas and the way to compensate is through home/urban garden plantings. He says that using strategic plants that are native to our areas is critical. These are plants, especially trees and shrubs, that are magnets for insects. They will help support insect life, provide needed food for birds, plants and carbon sequestration. For example a native Oak provides habitat for a few hundred insects while an alien ginkgo for maybe one or two.

Even thought we have mainly been using native plants in the garden this has us rethinking our plant choice for future selections.

How (and Why) to Use Native Plants – The New York Times Stories&pgtype=Homepage&contentCollection=AtHome&package_index=1

Author and research scientist Doug Tallamy presents…

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The Extinction Protocol

00000000 SunIt’s been 100 days since the last recorded sunspot, which one expert says is evidence that we are entering a phase called solar minimum, reports said. There have been whispers on social media about an impending Ice Age (Just What We Need!), but NASA scientists have said we should not be overly worried, according to “So far this year, the Sun has been blank 76 percent of the time, a rate surpassed only once before in the Space Age,” reported, according to Forbes. “Last year, 2019, the Sun was blank 77 percent of the time. Two consecutive years of record-setting spotlessness adds up to a very deep solar minimum, indeed.”

NASA says that about every 11 years, “sunspots fade away, bringing a period of relative calm. “This is called a solar minimum,” Dean Pesnell of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, said on “And it’s a regular part…

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Dear Kitty. Some blog

This 16 May 2020 video is about a thrush nightingale singing in Belarus.

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Dear Kitty. Some blog

This April 2020 video says about itself:

The Rufous Hummingbird is a priority species for us at American Bird Conservancy due to significant population declines. In spite of its small size, it’s the most aggressive of the North American hummingbirds, often attacking birds many times its size in defense of its territory. It reigns supreme at feeders and choice flower patches.

Video by Don DesJardin.

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Dear Kitty. Some blog

This June 2019 video says about itself:

Singing Common Whitethroat (Sylvia communis) in Heemskerk, the Netherlands.

This is a common and widespread typical warbler which breeds throughout Europe and across much of temperate western Asia. This small passerine bird is strongly migratory, and winters in tropical Africa, Arabia, and Pakistan.

After yesterday, again to the coastal sand dunes nature reserve on 18 May 2020.

A cuckoo calls. A nightingale sings.

A common whitethroat on a treetop.

A great spotted woodpecker.

Lakelet, 18 May 2020

We arrive at the lakelet.

At the lakelet, a willow warbler sings.

Lakelet, on 18 May 2020

The white water-crowfoot flowers are still there.

White water-crowfoot, 18 May 2020

A bit further, a great tit.

A stonechat on top of a bush.

Two meadow pipits flying.

A great cormorant flying.

A common blue butterfly on a wild pansy flower.

Wild pansies, 18 May 2020

Unfortunately, when this photo was taken, the butterfly was gone.

Wild pansies, on 18 May 2020

A small heath butterfly.

A barn…

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