Category: Out in the Woods

Why Did the Amphibian Cross the Road?

About 370 million years ago, the first animals crawled out of the oceans to live on land. Known as amphibians (“two-lives”: amphi ‘both’ + bios ‘life’), they still require water for part of their life cycle. Beginning their life in water with gills and…

Stream Foam

Walk along a woodland stream and the occasional sight of a glob of foamy stuff comes into view. So where does this sudsy-looking stuff come from?  Stream foam is most common during periods of heavy rain and snow melt. Surface water mixes with topsoil…

Phytoplankton: The Invisible Forest

     Recent news reports regarding the ongoing fires in the Amazon Rain Forest have been a bit inaccurate about the oxygen generated by this wondrous landscape. The title “lungs of the Earth”—is a gross overestimate. As several scientists have pointed out recently, the…

Prehistoric trees saved from Australia’s fires

By Sara Spary, CNN  January 16, 2020 An ancient grove of pine trees whose ancestors are thought to have stood tall among dinosaurs some 200 million years ago has been saved from Australian bushfires in a covert firefighting mission. Firefighters in New South Wales…

Global Warming is Creating Ice in Greenland!

Greenland ice is actually building. Although this seems improbable due to Earth’s increasing temperature, it’s true…AND…it’s increasing sea water level rise!! Here’s how. Glaciers form where snow accumulates and, under pressure from the weight of more accumulating snow, forms ice. This usually happens on…

BLUE CARBON and SEAGRASS

“Blue Carbon” is the scientifically recognized term defining carbon stored by coastal ecological systems. These systems of seagrasses, mangroves, salt marshes, and seaweed, cover less than 0.5% of the seabed, are equal in size to about 0.05% of the biomass on land, and are…

GLOBAL OCEAN CONVEYOR BELT: Changes due to Global Warming

Sea water along the equatorial area gets heated by the sun, and the warmed water forms a stratification layer above the colder lower water. Eastern Trade Winds caused by Earth’s rotation and atmospheric temperatures push this water layer, creating the Global Ocean Conveyor Belt…

Our Climate in 60 Years

Most folks have difficulty relating to the scientists’ warnings relating to climate change due to global warming. A University of Maryland study, with funding from National Science Foundation and U.S. Geological Survey, attempts to clarify these temperature changes. The image above shows our climate…

The Natural History of Deering Pond

by Gordon S. Johnston, Professor of Biology, Nasson College, August, 1973 Introduction        I first saw the pond in the company of students John Holzapfel and Sidney Korn on a cold January morning in 1966. It was an impressive introduction for the…

A Short History of Deering Pond

Various glacial actions carved a basin into ancient bedrock. About 14,000 years ago, meltwater from the last retreating glacier lined this basin with “rock flour”, a fine-grained silt made from the glaciers grinding away at the bedrock and suspended in the runoff. As the…