Photographing Wildlife

Photographing Wildlife

It’s got to take a special kind of photo exhibition to take us away from our digital screens — and the newly opened showcase of imagery marvels at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County will mesmerize you with artistry, depth and passion for our natural world. IPhone? What iPhone? Wildlife Photographer of the […]

March of the Tarantulas

March of the Tarantulas

It’s called a migration, but for the thousands of male tarantulas that live in Southern California, it’s more like “knocking on doors looking for a date.” This is the time of year when SoCal hikers could chance upon these eight-legged wonders that inhabit local grasslands, chaparrals, canyons and deserts. We can’t think of a better […]

Spotting Giant Sea Bass

Spotting Giant Sea Bass

Some marine biologists have called the curious and often playful giant sea bass the “Labrador retrievers of the sea” – which partially explains why these tremendously large fish (which can weigh up to 500 pounds) are currently on the critically endangered list. These gentle giants have struggled to keep their populations viable as humans have […]

Filling SoCal Skies

Filling SoCal Skies

One after another, cars arrive as if on cue. They pull over on the shoulder of this two-lane highway near an endless orange tree grove here in Valle Vista on the outskirts of Hemet in Riverside County. Old couples, parents of small children and families with grown kids sheepishly exit their cars, wander to the […]

SoCal Sea Stars Recovery Needs Community Eyeballs

SoCal Sea Stars Recovery Needs Community Eyeballs

There’s a long road ahead for SoCal sea star populations that are slowly recovering from the Sea Star Wasting Syndrome that hit the area in late 2013 – and SoCal residents are encouraged to help play a part in monitoring the process. Four years ago, SoCal coastlines and intertidal outcroppings were strangely devoid of sea […]

Are There Silver Foxes in SoCal Forests?

Are There Silver Foxes in SoCal Forests?

Altadena resident, artist and active hiker Doug Meyer was just starting the ascent up Echo Mt. Trail from Altadena when he spied a most unusual creature about a months ago. “I’ve seen bighorn sheep, bobcats and other animals while I’ve hiked,” he says. “This was something I have never seen before.” On this mid-morning weekday […]

A Tale of Two Squirrels

A Tale of Two Squirrels

Alan Muchlinski looked out his window in the 1990s and knew something was wrong. There was a squirrel in his West Covina backyard that wasn’t supposed to live in Southern California. An Eastern fox squirrel – not the native Western gray – was eating from his apricot tree. The grays don’t like the taste of […]

The Nature of iNaturalist

The Nature of iNaturalist

Pictures are worth a 1,000 words – and for the creators and users of iNaturalist, that saying speaks volumes. Volumes of data, that is. With more than 3 million observations from more than 250,000 users logged into the online platform since its initial launch in 2008, iNaturalist has become the go-to source for scientists, biologists, […]

P-22, Movie Star

P-22, Movie Star

Will  P-22 be the cat that changed America? Filmmaker Tony Lee thinks so. “The ball is starting to roll,” says Lee about his latest flick “The Cat That Changed America,” a documentary about Griffith Park’s beloved lone bachelor mountain lion. Kicking off with a  world premiere at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival earlier this […]

Is the Unusual Mortality Event (UME) Done in SoCal?

Is the Unusual Mortality Event (UME) Done in SoCal?

For three years, Southern California rescue and treatment centers for marine mammals were overwhelmed with young stranded California sea lions. Day after day, emaciated and weak pups arrived with saggy skin and sad eyes. Staff at the five SoCal rescue facilities went into emergency mode, working round the clock to treat malnourished youngsters, many after […]

Staring Down the Mysterious California Newt

Staring Down the Mysterious California Newt

Gary Bucciarelli often has staring contests with Los Angeles’ only species of newt, Taricha torosa better known as the California newt. “They are very quizzical and can stare right back at you for 5-10 minutes without moving a muscle,” says the evolutionary biologist who’s also the Stunt Ranch Director of Research at UCLA La Kretz […]

Giants Among Us

Giants Among Us

“They are just like big Labrador retrievers,” says Biology Professor Larry Allen of Cal State University Northridge about the giant sea bass that once disappeared but now are showing signs of repopulating Southern California waters.  “Some of my student divers are able to pet them and these fish can be huge, up to 7 feet […]

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