Posts by sprigglys

The Many Microscopic Communities of Soil

Where did soil come from? When thinking about the most valuable natural resources, the first things that come to mind are usually oil, gemstones, precious metals, and other similar commodities. You may be surprised to hear that one of the most important and truly priceless natural resources is soil. The soil is thought to have…

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Plants are picky, but for good reason…

Attracting pollinators is key As far as flowering plants go, pollination is absolutely critical to the health of current and future generations. Pollination among plants allows for the creation of seeds, larger fruit, and increases genetic diversity, leading to a greater resistance to environmental stressors. In order to achieve the most efficient pollination possible, some…

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Solar fields and pollinators

The situation for solar fields and pollinators  Although more and more homes in the United States are utilizing solar fields, the majority of solar field projects are utility-scaled, requiring huge tracts of land that are made into barren areas virtually unlivable to most wildlife. Some solar companies are beginning to try and change that, however,…

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The Mighty Mason Bee

The mason bees are here!  I am happy to report that the first mason bees have been observed emerging from their winter domiciles around the area! I understand that for most readers this might not be the most exciting statement, however let me tell you why mason bees are such fascinating and important native bees. That…

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The magnetic field flip

The chaotic source of our magnetic field There has been increased attention on the Earth’s magnetic field in recent years. Scientists have noticed for some time that this protective barrier, which shields the planet from being roasted by cosmic radiation, is less reliable than we might hope. The field itself is generated by iron and other metals circulating…

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The wise old mountains

In Western North Carolina, chances are you can’t go far without seeing a mountain. While the mountains are awe-inspiring on an almost daily basis, we do not always discuss the historical, industrial, or geological importance of the Appalachian Mountains. I felt many would find this information as fascinating as I do. While it may be true that…

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Carpenter bees do more good than harm

Annoying but important  You know carpenter bees- the large yellow and black insects that bore holes in wood and can sometimes be seen patrolling their territories. These traits have given the carpenter bee a bad rap which it does not deserve. Carpenter bees are amazing native pollinators and are an important part of the ecosystem…

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Native pollinators need help too

Honey bees aren’t the only pollinators suffering You’ve heard about the dangers facing honey bees- pests, diseases, and pesticides have stressed the species to a critical point. This threatens to make using honey bees for pollination services much more costly and difficult. The pollination of of dollars worth of crops hangs in the balance. However, we…

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The Flashy World of Floral Attraction

Beyond the beauty  While many of us take pleasure in being around blooming plants because of their beauty, a closer look reveals the true nature of flowers. What might at first glance appear to be a peaceful wildflower meadow is actually the site of frenzied activity. For many creatures on Earth, a collection of flowers…

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Bivalves: Nature’s Water Filters

Small but mighty On ocean floors and riverbeds, colonies of organisms clad in armor plating filter minute organisms out of the water around them.  These creatures remain in the same spots for years at a time and can siphon huge amounts of water throughout the course of their lifetimes.  Tiny fortresses nestled among the rocks…

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