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Scott Shalaway Results

A winter roosting box for chickadees is a tight spot

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Recently, at a wild bird trade show in Missouri, a women approached me and thanked me for “a great idea.” She said she had read a story I had written about winter roosting boxes a few years ago. Candace Stuart, owner of a Wild Bird Center in Denver, began offering workshops for kids to build […]

Notice the small trees, they yield the best surprises

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Late October brought the first hard frost to the ridge, and now the temperature dips to the low 30s most mornings. Frosty temperatures send my wife and me in search of persimmons, which ripen after a few cold nights. Ours grow in the hayfield. Persimmon Persimmon is a small, inconspicuous tree that rarely grows taller […]

Oaks and acorns: The lifeblood of the outdoors

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Just because a resource is common and abundant today doesn’t mean that will always be the case. When Europeans settled North America, for example, migratory flocks of passenger pigeons darkened the sky turning day into night. The last one died in the Cincinnati Zoo in 1914. Inestimable herds of bison roamed the Great Plains. Today, […]

Understanding bird feeders

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Last week I spent two days at a wild bird products trade show in Missouri. It’s a great way to see new products, but I was reminded that truly new feeder designs are hard to find. Improvements and variations on a theme, however, are never in short supply. Any discussion of bird feeders should begin […]

Dropping temperatures will mean hungry birds

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Weather forecasters are calling for overnight low temperatures to dip into the 30s this week, so it’s time to pull out the bird feeders and stock up on some seed. Here are some tips to keep in mind when shopping for food for wild birds. Sunflower seeds attract the greatest variety of feeder birds. Black-oil […]

Forensic ornithology is an interesting science

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I made a new friend last weekend at the annual Berkeley Springs (W.Va.) Fall Birding Festival. Marcy Heacker and I spoke to the group on Saturday evening. Marcy works at the Smithsonian Institution’s Division of Birds where she identifies feather fragments as a forensic ornithologist at the Feather Identification Laboratory. Usually her work involves bird […]

Goldenrod unfairly fingered as allergy culprit

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Though most wildflowers have faded by late September, goldenrod is just taking center stage. More than 100 species of goldenrod (genus Solidago) brighten North American meadows in late summer and early fall. They are the bright yellow flowers that turn open fields into seas of gold. My hayfield came into full bloom about a week […]

No time to waste: It’s time to buy a duck stamp

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Though I’ve never hunted waterfowl, every year as fall approaches I buy a duck stamp. I get mine at a post office, but they can also be purchased online (www.duckstamp.com) or at larger outdoor stores. That $15 is the best conservation investment I make each year. Plus I get a collectable piece of miniature wildlife […]

Notes on whooping cranes and hummingbirds

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) recently announced plans to reintroduce a non-migratory flock of endangered whooping cranes in Louisiana. If this proposal is approved, the reintroduction could begin in early 2011. There are approximately 1.3 million acres of suitable marsh habitat in southwestern coastal Louisiana. The cranes are not expected to be affected […]

Factory fishing jeopardizes important fish’s future

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Quiz time. Name the most important fish in the sea. If you said tuna, halibut, flounder, marlin or swordfish, you’re wrong, at least according to H. Bruce Franklin. His book, The Most Important Fish in the Sea (2007, Island Press), makes a powerful case that menhaden is the correct answer. If you’re unfamiliar with menhaden, […]

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