Birds have hollow bones

October 21, 2019

In the spring and fall, the vast majority of birds take to the air. In the spring, they head north to their breeding grounds, and in the fall, they head south to overwintering areas that are warmer and have ample food supplies. Migration can be a long and hard journey,…

Photo of a raccoon

10 fast raccoon facts

October 14, 2019

1. A male is called a boar. You probably didn’t know that, like a pig, that a male raccoon is called a boar and a female is called a sow. Little ones aren’t called piglets, though; they’re called kits. 2. It’s black mask may have a purpose. The raccoon’s black…

Photo of a hoverfly on a white flower

5 hoverfly facts

October 7, 2019

Black and yellow means bee, right? Not always! A lot of insects are black and yellow and yet aren’t bees, and a lot of bees aren’t even black and yellow. Native bees can be(e) blue, red, metallic green, brown — tons of different colors. One insect that mimics bees and…

Photo of hoarfrost

Plants protect themselves from the winter cold

September 23, 2019

Each autumn, the world outside is getting ready for a change. Birds are migrating to find warmer wintering grounds. Mammals are eating a lot to increase their fatty insulation and are putting food away for the winter. Trees are dropping their leaves and going dormant. (Read about that here) What…

Photo of a squirrel eating

Squirreling away nuts for winter

September 16, 2019

During the autumn season, you’ll see acorns and other nuts falling from trees as the trees get ready to go dormant — basically, sleep — during the winter. Many animals take advantage of this time and gather those nuts to eat during the winter, and you’ve most likely seen plenty…

Photo of a monarch butterfly

Male or female? How to tell if a monarch butterfly is a boy or a girl

September 9, 2019

During monarch tagging at Dee’s Bee & Butterfly Festival, taggers often get to choose whether they want to tag a male or a female monarch butterfly. Then the next question is, how do the staff helping with tagging know the difference? There are two very simple ways to tell apart…

Photo of boy coloring a bee

Bee pencil topper

September 9, 2019

All kids use pencils at school, but many times those pencils are plain yellow and don’t allow for much inspiration. We took pencils to the next level with our bee pencil toppers at the 2019 Bee & Butterfly Festival, and now you can make your own. Simply click here to…

Photo of a painted lady

Five fun facts about painted lady butterflies

August 26, 2019

1. The painted lady isn’t picky. Unlike many butterflies that have certain host plants that they lay eggs on and that caterpillars eat — the monarch butterfly host plant is milkweed — the painted lady has been noted to have more than 100 host plants. Caterpillars will eat thistles, hollyhocks…

Photo of a viceroy butterfly

Six facts about viceroy butterflies

August 19, 2019

You see a black-and-orange butterfly flitting around, but it looks too small to be a monarch butterfly. This butterfly has very similar markings, except for the black line across its hindwing. What could it be? It’s a viceroy! 1. Viceroys are mimics. Viceroy butterflies mimic monarch butterflies, and it was…

10 pollinator crafts

August 13, 2019

Do you love pollinators as much as we do? Then try out some of our favorite pollinator-themed crafts!

A butterfly’s bilateral symmetry

July 29, 2019

The line of symmetry is the imaginary line that divides something into two exactly equal and opposite parts. These two parts mirror each other; you can fold the figure in half and the two parts match exactly. Take a look at a monarch butterfly. Notice how the wings are identical…

Photo of a red-tailed hawk flying

7 red-tailed hawk facts

July 23, 2019

In the movies, you have probably seen a bald eagle flying and heard a screech-sound effect. However, that’s actually not a bald eagle’s call (hear that here). You may have also seen an osprey flying overhead in the movies and heard the same call, or a golden eagle and heard…