Blog en The Midday Sunflower Long-Horned Bee Huddle <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-author"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Lisa Gonzalez </div> </div> </div> <p>The life of the bee as we often think of it is one of constant motion: buzzing, dancing, collecting, feeding, searching, and digging is all in a days work for the &ldquo;busy bee.&rdquo;&nbsp; What many may not realize is that this perception of the bee is mainly from our frequent encounters with the females of the species which must not only feed themselves but also take care of their young.&nbsp; Honeybees, which are highly unusual in their behavior compared to most bees, have workers that are specialized in gathering pollen and communicating its location through dance, building and cleaning</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> bees honeybees pollinators Sunflowers Blog Fri, 17 Jul 2015 00:25:56 +0000 Lila Higgins 911 at Walnuts, anyone? <p><em>by Carol Bornstein</em><img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/Juglans%201.JPG" /><em>Photo by Carol Bornstein</em></p> <p>Squirrels and humans have something in common &ndash; both love nuts. If you skip the added salt and oil, these tasty &ldquo;fruits&rdquo; are good for you, too. And if you are interested in foraging &ndash; with permission and proper identification, of course - several of California&rsquo;s native trees and shrubs offer up some mighty flavorful nuts. Just ask the squirrels!</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Carol Bornstein foraging Nature Gardens nuts Trees walnuts Blog Thu, 09 Jul 2015 19:06:45 +0000 Emily Hartop 878 at Arroyo #Chubwatch 2015 <p>After three long years of planning, 45 arroyo chub were finally released into the Nature Garden&#39;s pond last week.&nbsp;<br /> <img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/IMG_9845.jpg" />Arroyo chub (it&#39;s alive, don&#39;t worry!) held for a quick photo op before release into the pond! <em>Photo by Richard Hayden.</em></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Arroyo chub California Department of Fish and Wildlife Chris Thacker chub fish Friends of the LA River Greg Pauly LA River Nature Gardens Pond Riverside Corona Resource Conservation District Blog Thu, 02 Jul 2015 17:56:14 +0000 Lila Higgins 877 at Museum Makes Room for Nesting Cliff Swallows <p>Cliff swallows have moved onto, rather than into the Museum! Last week, Kimball Garrett, Museum bird expert, reported finding a nest under the eaves of the building directly facing the historic LA Memorial Coliseum. As he got close enough to snap this photograph, Kimball observed a pair of young swallows peering out of their finely crafted mud dwelling.<br /> <img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/cliffswallows.jpg" /></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> bird birds cliff swallows House Sparrows nest nesting Passer domesticus Petrochelidon pyrrhonota Blog Tue, 23 Jun 2015 18:33:48 +0000 Lila Higgins 873 at Rare Nine-spotted Ladybug Found in L.A.! <p>During Bug Fair, I found a ladybug in the Museum&rsquo;s Nature Gardens, that didn&rsquo;t look familiar. It didn&rsquo;t have any spots, but it somehow looked different than all the other no-spotted ladybugs I&rsquo;d seen before. I took its photo, posted it to our <a href="" target="_blank">Nature Gardens Survey</a> on<em> iNaturalist</em>, and then totally forgot about it.</p> <p><em>Nine-spotted ladybug, photo taken by Harsi Parker</em></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Bug Fair Claremont First Fridays Harsi Parker ladybug Ladybugs Lost Ladybug Project Nature Gardens nine-spotted ladybug Richard Smart Blog Wed, 17 Jun 2015 21:19:58 +0000 Richard Smart 872 at Lizard Love Bites <p>Have you recently seen lizards in L.A. that appear to be biting each other, or maybe they are trying to eat each other?&nbsp;<br /> <img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/lizard_lovebite_three.jpg" /></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Alligator lizards Citizen Science Dr. Greg Pauly lizard lizards Los Angeles love bite RASCals Richard Smart Blog Wed, 27 May 2015 22:55:09 +0000 Lila Higgins 870 at The Flight of Monarch Butterfly 64365 <p>Somewhere in L.A. a monarch egg hatched and out popped a tiny girl caterpillar. That caterpillar ate, and ate, and ate. She ate milkweed, the only plant she could, until she molted her skin. All told, she molted four times until she was a big, fat, stripy caterpillar with black tentacles. She made one last molt and formed a bright green chrysalis with shining golden spots. Two weeks later she emerged from that chrysalis as an adult, and then she flew. On November 17, 2014 she was spotted in the Museum&rsquo;s Nature Gardens. She was caught in a net, and gently removed by skilled hands.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> butterflies Citizen Science Monarch butterfly monarchs Nature Gardens Southwest Monarch Study Blog Wed, 20 May 2015 20:51:47 +0000 Lila Higgins 869 at Ankle Bracelets for House Sparrows <p>Last week, husband and wife ornithologist team Kimball Garrett (Museum ornithology collections manager) and Kathy Molina (Museum Research Associate) partnered with citizen science staff to band house sparrows (<em>Passer domesticus</em>). We hope that by banding these birds, we&#39;ll be able to understand how they use our urban environment. These little brown birds are literally everywhere, yet not much is known about their local behavior. &nbsp;What we do know is that they are originally from Europe and were purposefully introduced to North America starting in the 1850s.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> bird banding Citizen Science color banding House Sparrows Kathy Molina Kimball Garrett Passer domesticus Blog Fri, 10 Apr 2015 23:33:56 +0000 Lila Higgins 867 at Purple Pollen Eaters: A Honey bee's Love Affair with Phacelia <p>Spring is here and everyone is totally digging the wildflower display in our Nature Gardens. Casey Schreiner from <a href="" target="_blank">Modern Hiker</a>&nbsp;even gave us a shoutout on <a href="" target="_blank">Instagram</a>.&nbsp;<br /> <img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/Phacelia_modernhiker.jpg" /><br /> It&#39;s a good day for&nbsp;#wildflowers&nbsp;at the&nbsp;@nhmla!</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> honey bees Layia platyglossa Phacelia Phacelia tanacetifolia Pollinator Garden pollinators tansy leaf phacelia tidy tips Blog Wed, 01 Apr 2015 23:18:38 +0000 Lila Higgins 864 at Kid Citizen Scientist Finds First Snail for Project S.L.I.M.E. <p>A few weekends ago, citizen scientists from all over L.A. came to the Museum to see what they could find hiding in the damp and cool shadows of our Nature Gardens. Twenty people joined Museum experts (Lindsey Groves and Florence Nishida) to search for slugs, snails, and fungi&mdash;those often overlooked decomposers that break down dead and decaying material. They were also the first people to test out our latest and greatest citizen science project, S.L.I.M.E.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> banded garden slug Citizen Science Florence Nishida fungus glass snail gray field slug Jann Vandetti Lindsey Groves mushrooms Project S.L.I.M.E. slugs snails Blog Wed, 18 Mar 2015 23:09:38 +0000 Lila Higgins 862 at 115th Annual Christmas Bird Count @NHMLA! <p>On December 28, everyday people from all over Los Angeles flocked to the Natural History Museum to help count the bird life of L.A.! Some came as beginners ready for an intro to birding from Kimball Garrett, one of the best and most well-known birders in town, who also happens to be the Museum&rsquo;s Ornithology Collections Manager. Others came because they were interested in contributing to this important bird census, but didn&rsquo;t plan to see any surprising or remarkable species in our small urban oasis. &nbsp;Little did they know they were in for some surprises.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Allen's Hummingbird American kestrel black-throated gray warbler Christmas Bird Count Citizen Science Common Poorwill Kimball Garrett Lincoln's sparrow Blog Tue, 27 Jan 2015 22:13:21 +0000 Lila Higgins 857 at Selfie Sticks and Hummingbird Nests <p>We found another hummingbird nest in the Nature Gardens! On December 28th Miguel Orde&ntilde;ana, Museum Citizen Science Coordinator, found an Allen&#39;s Hummingbird, <em>Selasphorus sasin</em>, nest in&nbsp;our cork&nbsp;oak tree.</p> <p><img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/Allen%27s%20hummingbird-Felipe%20Lepe_edited.jpg" style="width:100%" /></p> <p>Female Allen&#39;s Hummingbird, photo courtesy of Felipe Lepe.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Allen's Hummingbird cork oak hummingbirds Miguel Ordenana Nature Gardens Selasphorus sasin selfie stick selfie sticks Blog Wed, 07 Jan 2015 21:29:42 +0000 Lila Higgins 855 at First Lizard Found in Museum's Nature Gardens! <p>On November 19, 2014 something happened at work that I&rsquo;ve been waiting three and half years for. Unfortunately, I wasn&rsquo;t here to witness it, but thanks to citizen science I was able to celebrate&nbsp;the discovery, even though I was 6,187 miles away.</p> <p>On that day, newly turned citizen scientist Toni Castillo documented the first lizard in the Museum&rsquo;s Nature Gardens.</p> <p><img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/WFL_NG_FIRST.jpg" style="width: 100%;" /></p> <p>Photo courtesy of Toni Castillo</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Greg Pauly lizards Nature Gardens RASCals Reptiles and Amphibians of Southern California Toni Castillo Western Fence Lizard Blog Tue, 23 Dec 2014 21:42:47 +0000 Lila Higgins 854 at Plant Clocks: Telling Seasonal Time in the Nature Gardens <p>Want to know the time of day? Look no further than your wristwatch, clock, computer, or cell phone. For the time of year, though, look to nature. Like a reliable timepiece, certain plants and animals signal the change of season. Just like learning to tell time, anyone can learn to read nature&rsquo;s seasonal clock. As with so many things here in the Golden State, nature is decidedly different from the rest of the country &mdash; our spring really begins in autumn!</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Arctostaphylos California drought California native plants California seasons John Dourley Lester Rowntree manzanita manzanitas mediterranean climate seasons Blog Thu, 11 Dec 2014 22:34:34 +0000 Lila Higgins 853 at The Real L.A. Noir: The True-life Insect Cannibals and Murderers in our Midst <p><img alt="" src="/nature/sites/default/files/Concera_tibialis_15707_01_edit.jpg" style="width:100%" /></p> <p>The coffin fly. Image courtesy of Kelsey Bailey.</p> <p>As you get into your car in the parking lot of the Trader Joe&rsquo;s in Silver Lake in Los Angeles, you might just be within arm&rsquo;s reach of cannibals. Not the human kind &ndash; but the insect variety.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">read more</a></p> ant decapitating fly BioSCAN coffin fly dragonly Hollywood Forever Cemetery insects LA Noir LA River Los Angeles phorid flies twisted wing parasite zombee zombie fly Blog Wed, 12 Nov 2014 20:21:50 +0000 Lila Higgins 849 at