Natural History Books-“The Shark and the Jellyfish” and “Dawn Light”

Lonely Beach

I have loved and read natural history books since I was a small boy. In my teens, I discovered the natural history writing of the great anthropologist Loren Eiseley.  His writings and outlook made a huge impression on me. You can read some excerpts from his books at my Metta Refuge blog: The Star Thrower Finding … Continue reading

The Size and Scale of the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

BP Gulf Oil Rig Explosion

Day after day, night after night, the oil from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil well boils out into the Gulf: Click HERE to see the oil discharge live.  The speed and volume of the outflow is truly incredible. Largely due to BP’s unwillingness to share data with outside experts, it’s very hard to determine just … Continue reading

The Solar Dynamics Observatory-A “Hubble Telescope” for the Sun

sunearth

You won’t want to miss these fantastic solar images from the new Solar Dynamics Observatory.  The movies at the NASA Science News site are simply incredible, and well-worth the download time! At a press conference today in Washington DC, researchers unveiled “First Light” images from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, a space telescope designed to study … Continue reading

The Creature that Runs So Fast it Goes Blind!

Japanese Tiger Beetle - by Kwon Hye Won

Beetles rule! At least, beetles rule when it comes to the number of species.  Species of beetles constitute about 25% of all known life-forms on Earth. In the insect realm, 40% of all insect species are beetles, numbering about 350,000.  Every year, dozens of new species are discovered, and some believe the number of unclassified … Continue reading

Encounter with Hundreds of Thousands of Ladybugs

LADYBUGS! LOTS of ladybugs! If you love nature and enjoy amazing images from nature, stop by my Berkeley, Naturally! nature blog and take a look at my new post about my discovery of several hundred thousand ladybugs amassed in the Berkeley Hills near my home. The post is called: They are the Lady(bugs) of the … Continue reading

Biologist discovers world’s smallest snake, lizard, and frog!

Dwarf Gecko - Sphaerodactylus parthenopion

My article “The Largest Snake that Ever Lived” proved to be my most popular post to date.  It’s not surprising. First of all, snakes can be incredibly beautiful: And a truly big snake is an amazing sight: Big snakes naturally evoke both awe and fear—who knows, maybe we have ancient memories of being their prey: … Continue reading

Meet the creature that eats its own brain!

tunicate_polycarpa_aurata_IMG_2011

The sea squirt is one of my favorite sea creatures.  When I was a young boy, I first met my first one in a tidal pool in Laguna Beach, California.  I remember bending down close to examine it, and like any kid, I gave it a gentle poke.  Imagine my surprise when it squirted me … Continue reading

Meet the Amazing Salp

Salp Colony 1

The first time I saw a photo of a colony of salp, I thought it was a picture of something from a science fiction movie: As a science and nature writer, I’ve become familiar with many sea creatures over the years. But somehow, I had never come across the salp before. What in the heck … Continue reading

Taking a look at landslides in California

Topanga Canyon Boulder

Readers of this extreme science blog might want to stop by my Berkeley, Naturally! site and take a look at my latest post: Berkeley Hills Landslide We had a series of very powerful El Niño-related storms last week in California, and I wrote about the effects here in the Berkeley Hills and San Francisco Bay … Continue reading

How “Avatar” Inspires Love of Nature and Love of Science

Avatar - Yerik

Few recent movies have moved this nature-lover’s heart as much as the smash-hit “Avatar.” For anyone who loves nature and astonishingly beautiful plants and animals, the experiencing the world of Pandora was like entering a dream-come-true. In fact, that’s exactly how one New York Times reviewer described the movie—”a biologist’s dream.” The reviewer should know, … Continue reading