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Naturalist Notebook 

May 8, 2012

Spotlight On…

Check out this week’s featured specimen!

(Pictured below, really close up!)

5-5-12a
Photo: N. Sincero © California Academy of Sciences

Can you guess what it is?

Here are some hints:

  • Breeding pairs of this species stay together all year round and migrate south with their offspring.
  • They are found in wetlands and agricultural fields.

Leave us a comment with your answer! Then come see us in the Classroom on Sunday, May 13th at 2:30 pm for Science Story Adventures to see if you’re right and to learn more about this animal. Science Story Adventures is our program for children ages 4 – 8 and their caregivers. In the program, we explore the natural world through stories, specimens, games and crafts.


November 20, 2011

Who Pooped?

11-8-11nPhoto: N. Sincero 2011, Scat Wrangler: S. Sumrall, Scat Courtesy of the Academy Docents

This scat may be found in southeastern Africa, most likely near high-quality grassland and water. You would be quite likely to find it in a conservation area, because over 80% of the estimated total population lives on some form of protected land. The dung’s components may vary, from digested grasses to remnants of fruits, flowers, twigs and leaves.

Who pooped?

Leave a comment below with your guess. We will reveal the answer in the comments section on Wednesday, November 23rd.

If you have your own natural history mystery (an unidentified animal, plant or other specimen), send a photo or two to naturalist@calacademy.org. We’ll do our best to help out. Please include location, date and any other details that seem pertinent.


Filed under: Who Pooped — nature @ 8:35 am

November 13, 2011

Who Pooped?

11-8-11g1

You might see these dark pellets  in eastern or southern Africa. They are often found scattered because of the distance they travel while dropping.  According to some reports, if the pellets are made by a male of this species, they will be larger than those of a female.

Who pooped?

Leave a comment below with your guess. We will reveal the answer in the comments section on Wednesday, November 16th.

If you have your own natural history mystery (an unidentified animal, plant or other specimen), send a photo or two to naturalist@calacademy.org. We’ll do our best to help out. Please include location, date and any other details that seem pertinent.


Filed under: Who Pooped — nature @ 8:51 am

November 6, 2011

Who Pooped?

11-6-111

Photo: N. Sincero 2011, Scat Wrangler: S. Sumrall

This scat generally has a short taper or blunt ends. It may contain animal remains, such as hair and bones, or plant remains, such as berry seeds. Ants are also commonly found in this scat. The animal that made it lives in at least 40 US States as well as Canada and Mexico.

Who pooped?

Leave a comment below with your guess. We will reveal the answer in the comments section on Wednesday, November 9th.

If you have your own natural history mystery (an unidentified animal, plant or other specimen), send a photo or two to naturalist@calacademy.org. We’ll do our best to help out. Please include location, date and any other details that seem pertinent.

Source:

Scats and Tracks of the Pacific Coast, Including British Columbia: A Field Guide to the Signs of 70 Wildlife Species / James C. Halfpenny ; illustrated by Todd Telander. Helena, Mont. : Falcon, c1999. Naturalist Center Reference QL768 .H36 1999


Filed under: Who Pooped — nature @ 8:49 am

October 30, 2011

Who Pooped?

1026

Photo: N. Sincero 2011, Scat Wrangler: S. Sumrall, Scat courtesy of the Academy Docent Specimen Collection

This scat can be found in the grasslands, savannas and open country of Africa. The animal that makes this scat eats low quality grasses, which pass through its digestive system quite quickly. Therefore, the scat generally includes a good deal of coarse undigested material.

Who pooped?

Leave a comment below with your guess. We will reveal the answer in the comments section on Wednesday, November 2nd.

If you have your own natural history mystery (an unidentified animal, plant or other specimen), send a photo or two to naturalist@calacademy.org. We’ll do our best to help out. Please include location, date and any other details that seem pertinent.


Filed under: Who Pooped — nature @ 8:46 am
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