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Tuesday, July 23rd, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Stan Tekiela

Nature Smart: Stylized loon ‘gliding’

There are many things we don’t understand in nature. We often make assumptions about the kinds of behaviors we see or witness in nature, and we often incorrectly attribute a specific animal behavior based on what we humans would think in a given situation.
I was considering this one evening while leading a group of photographers to capture images of the common loon.

Nature Smart: Stylized loon ‘gliding’ Read More »

Nature Smart: One big, and extremely rare, brood of loons

Nature is always showing me new things. For 20 years, I have been spending up to four weeks on my boat, photographing and studying the nesting, egg laying, chick hatching, and raising of common loons. I log countless hours on the water with about a dozen nesting pairs of loons, so it’s tempting to think I’ve seen it all. That was until last week.

Nature Smart: One big, and extremely rare, brood of loons Read More »

Nature Smart: A mysterious big-woods sandpiper

Last week, while leading a photo workshop to photograph black bears in northern Minnesota, I was reminded once again that nature exemplifies diversity.
My small group of photographers was following a female black bear with two yearling cubs. The bears were walking through a wetland with a few fallen trees and a couple of high, dry spots covered with green grasses. As we moved closer, I saw a large bird fly out of one of the high spots and land about 5 yards away.

Nature Smart: A mysterious big-woods sandpiper Read More »

Nature Smart: A lark that wears horns

The population of ground-nesting birds is steadily decreasing. In North America, we have hundreds of bird species that nest on the ground. Prairie birds such as Eastern and Western meadowlarks are good examples. If you are older than 50, you likely remember hearing meadowlarks in your youth, but since then, the population of meadowlarks dramatically has declined.

Nature Smart: A lark that wears horns Read More »

Nature Smart: Understanding the sharp-tailed grouse

This spring, I’ve been capturing images of two grouse species. In my last column I wrote about the greater prairie chicken, a once widespread species that numbered in the millions. It’s now nearly extinct in much of its former range. Today, let’s look at the sharp-tailed grouse.
Once again, I found myself getting up at 4 a.m. and heading out to my old truck in the dark.

Nature Smart: Understanding the sharp-tailed grouse Read More »

Nature Smart: The now too-rare prairie chickens

Awaking at o’-dark:30 to capture images of wildlife is standard operating procedure in my field.
During the past 40 years, I’ve dragged myself out of bed early thousands of times. So, last week when the alarm went off at 4 a.m., it was no surprise. I grabbed a few snacks and a bottle of water and headed out to my truck. It was a short drive before I exited the main road and traveled a series of dusty gravel roads.

Nature Smart: The now too-rare prairie chickens Read More »

Nature Smart: The unique marsh rabbit

While recently leading a photo tour in Florida, I was excited to see a crazy-cool critter and one of nature’s true rule-breakers!
I was walking a boardwalk over a shallow wetland. A wide variety of shrubs and small wetland trees dotted the landscape, along with plenty of aquatic plants and algae. The water was only a few inches to about a foot deep. Long-legged birds and ducks were swimming/walking around, feeding on insects and plants. It was a fine example of an ecosystem in balance.

Nature Smart: The unique marsh rabbit Read More »

Nature Smart: Sandhill cranes on the Platte River

It was just before the pandemic that I’d last gone to see one of the most amazing natural spectacles in North America: the annual migration of sandhill cranes (Antigone canadensis) in south-central Nebraska. For the previous 30-plus years, I’d led a trip to view the crane migration each spring.
This year I had an incredible group of 10 who were fun and excited to see the cranes.

Nature Smart: Sandhill cranes on the Platte River Read More »

Nature Smart: The invasive nanday parakeet

I think we all know how exotic species can disrupt ecosystems. There are many examples of this in both plants and animals. A big problem in the plant world is European buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica). There also are non-native mammals in North America that are considered major problems.

Nature Smart: The invasive nanday parakeet Read More »

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