Friday, January 29, 2010


I haven't made any blog entries lately because I have been really busy with the new semester and with a fellowship application. However, it is important to note that it is - 0.0 outside right now according to my thermometer. I don't know how it can be negative zero. But in any event it is cold enough that when I breathe in, snot in my nose freezes!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Winter Ecology Pictures

well, I don't have a ton of great pictures since it was so cold. but here are a few:

into the field!

Mouse Hole
a mouse popped out of the ground here.


Dead Calf 1
dragging a stillborn calf carcass up the hill. sadly, the ravens rejected it.

grouse wings
grouse tracks and wing marks!

Sunrise from the cabin.

Old Browse Damage on Striped Maple
Old browse damage on a striped maple. I did a mini-study on moose browse on these maples.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Preliminary Winter Ecology Post

Well, I have returned from Maine with new friends, amazing stories, a few sketches, a whole lot of knowledge I didn't have before I left, and exactly the same number of fingers and toes I had when I left!

I can't download pictures because I don't have my photo cable (it is on campus) but even if I did have it, I don't have a ton of pictures since the conditions were a bit adverse. However, here are a few highlights of the trip:

-Tracking weasels, mink, coyotes, deer, snowshoe hares, all manner of rodents, and a moose

-Learning that deer pee sometimes smells like Pine-Sol

-Dance Party with Bernd Heinrich

-Hanging out in the leaning, flammable, perilous sauna, then rolling around nude in the snow (don't worry, I am not posting pictures of this)

-collecting Callisoma cocoons

-Discovering what it is like to hike when it is below zero

-writing 'try our product' in pee

-Helping drag two dead calves up a hill - the ravens were not interested, however.

-having to hack through the ice on the well to get water

-sleeping in a below-freezing cabin and huddling like kinglets for warmth

-eating vole meat, pieces of lichen, and massive amounts of cheese, and chewing on various branches like a moose.

-Counting stems in 18 degree temperatures

-hitting my head on ceiling logs and stepping on slush with my socks

-new friends!

-Learning that 'little hotties' hand warmers only warm the ambient temperatures by 20 or 30 degrees (but raising your toes from 0 degrees to 30 degrees is still a big deal!)

-Learning that shooting a bear feeding from a bird feeder is like kissing your sister.

-breaking the coffee maker thingie (this was not a high point).


-still being confused about how to tell apart red and sugar maple.

And much more! Stories will follow, and hopefully pictures also.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Winter World!

I will be in a cabin in Maine for the next 9 days learning about how animals and plants survive the harsh winter (and trying to survive myself, with my multiple layers of warm clothes). I hope everyone who reads this has a great week and I'll hopefully have some neat pictures when I get back.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Record Snowfall in Burlington!

Last weekend Burlington received 32 inches of snow - the most ever recorded out of one storm. Needless to say the town was completely buried and I woke up to an amazing scene, reminiscent more of the mountain towns of the West, which get heavy snowfall like this more often.

Time to Shovel Out

Snow Table

Winooski River
Winooski River

Simba in the Snow
Zac's dog Simba, who I was petsitting.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Back in California, Part 3

I had to check on my plants while I was in California...


My Oak
Oak, planted in 1995

Wild Cucumber
The wild cucumber is popping up!


This is Madrona Marsh where I did a lot of restoration work in high school:
Madrona Marsh
There is some water but not too much yet.

On the way back I got stuck in Chicago overnight. I arrived too late to go out and enjoy the city at all, so it wasn't very fun, though the airline did buy me a hotel room.

Me in Chicago Airport At Midnight


As of right now I am back in burlington and we are getting hammered by a record snowfall of over two feet! I'll have pictures of this event later.