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  11. <title>Wild About Utah</title>
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  13. <link>https://wildaboututah.org</link>
  14. <description>A Utah Public Radio production featuring contributors who share a love of nature, preservation and education</description>
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  25. <title>Wild About Utah</title>
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  30. <item>
  31. <title>The Bear River&#8217;s History and Contributions</title>
  32. <link>https://wildaboututah.org/bear-rivers-history-and-contributions/</link>
  33. <pubDate>Mon, 10 Jun 2019 13:41:52 +0000</pubDate>
  34. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Josh Boling]]></dc:creator>
  35. <category><![CDATA[Springs, Rivers, Lakes and Streams]]></category>
  36. <category><![CDATA[Water]]></category>
  37. <category><![CDATA[bear river]]></category>
  38. <category><![CDATA[river route modification]]></category>
  39.  
  40. <guid isPermaLink="false">https://wildaboututah.org/?p=9832</guid>
  41. <description><![CDATA[<p>The Bear River meanders almost 500 miles from its headwaters in Utah’s Uinta Mountains to its mouth at the Great Salt Lake, making it the longest river in North America which does not empty into an ocean. Instead, the Bear River serves as the main source of fresh water for the Great Salt Lake, a &#8230; </p>
  42. <p class="link-more"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/bear-rivers-history-and-contributions/" class="more-link">Continue reading<span class="screen-reader-text"> "The Bear River&#8217;s History and Contributions"</span></a></p>
  43. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/bear-rivers-history-and-contributions/">The Bear River&#8217;s History and Contributions</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  44. ]]></description>
  45. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p><figure id="attachment_6640" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-6640" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bear.river_.basis_.waterrights.utah_.gov_.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bear.river_.basis_.waterrights.utah_.gov_.250x354.jpg" alt="Bear River Basin Courtesy Utah Division of Water Rights bear.river_.basis_.waterrights.utah_.gov_.250x354.jpg" width="250" height="354" class="size-full wp-image-6640" srcset="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bear.river_.basis_.waterrights.utah_.gov_.250x354.jpg 250w, https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bear.river_.basis_.waterrights.utah_.gov_.250x354-212x300.jpg 212w" sizes="(max-width: 250px) 100vw, 250px" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-6640" class="wp-caption-text">Bear River Basin<br />Courtesy Utah Division of Water Rights<br />bear.river_.basis_.waterrights.utah_.gov_.250&#215;354.jpg</figcaption></figure>The Bear River meanders almost 500 miles from its headwaters in Utah’s Uinta Mountains to its mouth at the Great Salt Lake, making it the longest river in North America which does not empty into an ocean. Instead, the Bear River serves as the main source of fresh water for the Great Salt Lake, a vast terminal lake in the Great Basin with no outlet except evaporation. This hasn’t always been the case, though. The Bear River once flowed north, serving as a tributary of the Snake River, and ultimately reached the Pacific Ocean via the Columbia River. That is until about 140,000 years ago when the earth erupted in present-day southeast Idaho and spilled lava across the Bear River’s path. </p>
  46. <p><figure id="attachment_9836" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9836" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Bryan-Dixon-Canoe-the-Bear-River1.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Bryan-Dixon-Canoe-the-Bear-River1.250x188.jpg" alt="Canoeing on the Bear River, Cutler Reservoir Courtesy &amp; Copyright Bryan Dixon, Photographer" width="250" height="188" class="size-full wp-image-9836" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9836" class="wp-caption-text">Canoeing on the Bear River, Cutler Reservoir<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Bryan Dixon, Photographer</figcaption></figure>Now obstructed by expansive lava fields hardening into immense walls of basalt rock, the Bear dog-legged to the south and became—for the first time—a source of fresh water for the ancient inland sea that would eventually become the Great Salt Lake. The river was tenacious, though, and spent its time not only feeding fresh water to ancestors of the Great Salt Lake but also chiseling away at the basalt columns that obstructed its way toward the sea. The river was finally rewarded for its efforts millennia after having been cut off from the Snake and Columbia River Basins, and once again became a tributary of the Snake River. This fate would not last, however. Roughly 35,000 years ago, violent geology would have its way again. More lava flows around present-day Soda Springs, Idaho, bent the Bear River back toward the Great Basin where it still empties today. </p>
  47. <figure id="attachment_9838" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9838" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_.png"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_.250x333.png" alt="the Bear River between Benson and Cutler reservoir in Cache Valley. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Josh Boling, Photographer" width="250" height="333" class="size-full wp-image-9838" srcset="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_.250x333.png 250w, https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_.250x333-225x300.png 225w" sizes="(max-width: 250px) 100vw, 250px" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9838" class="wp-caption-text">the Bear River between Benson and Cutler reservoir in Cache Valley.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Josh Boling, Photographer</figcaption></figure>
  48. <p><figure id="attachment_9839" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9839" style="width: 1536px" class="wp-caption alignright"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_.png" alt="the Bear River between Benson and Cutler reservoir in Cache Valley. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Josh Boling, Photographer" width="1536" height="2048" class="size-full wp-image-9839" srcset="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_.png 1536w, https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_-225x300.png 225w, https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/boling.bear_.river_-768x1024.png 768w" sizes="(max-width: 767px) 89vw, (max-width: 1000px) 54vw, (max-width: 1071px) 543px, 580px" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9839" class="wp-caption-text">the Bear River between Benson and Cutler reservoir in Cache Valley.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Josh Boling, Photographer</figcaption></figure>And this has been a boon for the millions of residents—Homo sapiens and otherwise—of the Wasatch Front here in Utah. Let’s consider for a moment what life in central and northern Utah would be like if not for the Bear River. For starters, the Great Salt Lake would lose 60% of its annual inflow, drastically reducing its volume. I wonder if Brigham Young and his Saints would have even considered settling in the Salt Lake Valley after enduring the many lake-bed-dust storms courtesy of the Great Salt Lake that are becoming a growing concern today. We would certainly be deprived of the world-class migratory bird and wetland habitat supported by the Bear River at the famous Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. Last fall, Ogden’s Standard Examiner newspaper reported that, quote, “the river had disappeared into a vast mudflat that used to be Bear River Bay.” Experts cited irrigation, municipal, and habitat uses in addition to a host of environmental and climate factors as causes of the Bear River becoming “tapped out” before it reached the Great Salt Lake. A snowpack that has doubled last year’s total according to the Salt Lake Tribune has the Bear River Basin’s snowpack brimming at nearly 300% its average this time of year. This promises to turn things around for the Bear River and the many species which depend upon it.</p>
  49. <p>A complex and interdependent collection of variables impact the Bear River and its hydrologic fate—not least of which are humans, ecology, climate, and the occasional volcanic eruption. </p>
  50. <p>I’m Josh Boling, and I’m Wild About Utah!</p>
  51. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Credits:</span></span><br />
  52. Images:<br />
  53. &nbsp; &nbsp; Bear River Diagram Courtesy Utah Division of Water Rights<br />
  54. &nbsp; &nbsp; Courtesy &amp; Copyright Bryan Dixon<br />
  55. &nbsp; &nbsp; Courtesy &amp; Copyright Josh Boling<br />
  56. Sound:<br />
  57. Text: Josh Boling, 2019, <a href="https://bridgerlandaudubon.org" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">Bridgerland Audubon Society</a></p>
  58. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Sources &amp; Additional Reading</span></span></p>
  59. <p>Greene, Jack, The Bear River, Wild About Utah, May 24, 2018, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/bear-river/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/bear-river/</a></p>
  60. <p>Beck, Russ, America&#8217;s Caveat River, Wild About Utah, Nov 16, 2016, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/americas-caveat-river/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/americas-caveat-river/</a></p>
  61. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/bear-rivers-history-and-contributions/">The Bear River&#8217;s History and Contributions</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  62. ]]></content:encoded>
  63. </item>
  64. <item>
  65. <title>Building a Warm Home for Endangered Razorback Suckers’ Young</title>
  66. <link>https://wildaboututah.org/building-a-warm-home-for-endangered-razorback-suckers-young/</link>
  67. <pubDate>Mon, 03 Jun 2019 13:41:47 +0000</pubDate>
  68. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Shauna Leavitt]]></dc:creator>
  69. <category><![CDATA[Fish]]></category>
  70. <category><![CDATA[Vertebrates]]></category>
  71. <category><![CDATA[Endangered Fish]]></category>
  72. <category><![CDATA[endangered species]]></category>
  73. <category><![CDATA[Endangered Species Act]]></category>
  74. <category><![CDATA[Razerback]]></category>
  75. <category><![CDATA[sucker]]></category>
  76.  
  77. <guid isPermaLink="false">https://wildaboututah.org/?p=9802</guid>
  78. <description><![CDATA[<p>Just outside Moab between the cold, fast flowing water of the Colorado River and the slow, warmer waters of the Matheson Wetland Preserve stands a newly constructed escape passage for larvae of the endangered razorback sucker. The fish nursery was built to provide the newly hatched razorbacks a way to escape the appetites of the &#8230; </p>
  79. <p class="link-more"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/building-a-warm-home-for-endangered-razorback-suckers-young/" class="more-link">Continue reading<span class="screen-reader-text"> "Building a Warm Home for Endangered Razorback Suckers’ Young"</span></a></p>
  80. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/building-a-warm-home-for-endangered-razorback-suckers-young/">Building a Warm Home for Endangered Razorback Suckers’ Young</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  81. ]]></description>
  82. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p><figure id="attachment_9803" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9803" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-razorback-sucker-larvae-under-microscope.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-razorback-sucker-larvae-under-microscope.250x136.jpg" alt="Razorback Sucker: A tiny razorback sucker larvae under a microscope. They look like tiny noodles when seen swimming in the wetlands. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer" width="250" height="136" class="size-full wp-image-9803" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9803" class="wp-caption-text">A tiny razorback sucker larvae under a microscope.  They look like tiny noodles when seen swimming in the wetlands.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer</figcaption></figure>Just outside Moab between the cold, fast flowing water of the Colorado River and the slow, warmer waters of the Matheson Wetland Preserve stands a newly constructed escape passage for larvae of the endangered razorback sucker.</p>
  83. <p>The fish nursery was built to provide the newly hatched razorbacks a way to escape the appetites of the large predators in the Colorado River. </p>
  84. <p>The tiny “noodle like” larvae enter the passage, swim through a screen which holds the predators back, then live a peaceful few months in the safe, nutrient rich water of the preserve. </p>
  85. <p><figure id="attachment_9805" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9805" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-Katie-and-Zach-with-temporary-Matheson-screen.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-Katie-and-Zach-with-temporary-Matheson-screen.250x188.jpg" alt="Razorback Sucker: Katie Creighton and Zach Ahrens both native aquatics biologists for Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (UDWR) standing on the temporary Matheson screen. The Nature Conservancy and UDWR partnered together to build the structure to allow the endangered razorback sucker larvae to enter the Scott M. Matheson Wetlands Preserve without the predators also coming in. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer" width="250" height="188" class="size-full wp-image-9805" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9805" class="wp-caption-text">Katie Creighton and Zach Ahrens both native aquatics biologists for Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (UDWR) standing on the temporary Matheson screen.  The Nature Conservancy and UDWR partnered together to build the structure to allow the endangered razorback sucker larvae to enter the Scott M. Matheson Wetlands Preserve without the predators also coming in.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer</figcaption></figure>The larvae will stay in the Matheson Wetland preserve during the summer to grow and gain strength.  When water levels drop, the razorback young will be moved back into the Colorado River when they are much larger and have a better chance of survival.</p>
  86. <p>The razorback sucker has lived in the Colorado River for thousands of years and has adapted to Utah’s warm turbid desert waters and rivers.</p>
  87. <p>But during the twentieth century the razorbacks faced two threats: the growing population of non-native predator fish that consume the razorbacks, and the changing flow regime in the Colorado River Basin due to increasing water demand and development.  These two threats decreased the razorbacks’ ability to maintain a sustainable population, which eventually led to the listing of the sucker as a federally endangered species. </p>
  88. <p><figure id="attachment_9807" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9807" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-Matheson-light-trap-near-control-structure.85pct.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-Matheson-light-trap-near-control-structure.250x188.jpg" alt="Light trap near control structure in the Scott M. Matheson preserve. The traps are used to catch and monitor razorback sucker larvae. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer" width="250" height="188" class="size-full wp-image-9807" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9807" class="wp-caption-text">Light trap near control structure in the Scott M. Matheson preserve. The traps are used to catch and monitor razorback sucker larvae.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer</figcaption></figure>Katie Creighton, the native aquatics project leader with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources said, “In the Upper Basin [of the Colorado River], specifically around Moab, we saw [a] pretty significant decline in [population] numbers in the mid-90s [which] prompted stocking.  We began to augment the populations with fish we reared in hatcheries.”</p>
  89. <p>For 30 years, managers stocked razorback in the Colorado River.  Then in 2008, they began noticing an increase in adult razorback numbers and detecting spawning aggregations which prompted managers to begin tracking reproduction.</p>
  90. <p>Creighton explains, “We [went] into the rivers around Moab, in the Green and the Colorado Rivers, and…set larval light traps… to determine whether or not these fish were successfully spawning.”</p>
  91. <p><figure id="attachment_9809" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9809" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-light-trap-in-Matheson.90pct.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-light-trap-in-Matheson.259x188.jpg" alt="Light trap in the Scott M. Matheson Wetlands Preserve. The trap is used to determine how many larvae make it into the preserve. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer" width="250" height="188" class="size-full wp-image-9809" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9809" class="wp-caption-text">Light trap in the Scott M. Matheson Wetlands Preserve.  The trap is used to determine how many larvae make it into the preserve.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer</figcaption></figure>The light traps collected a promising amount of razorback larvae in both the Green and Colorado Rivers.</p>
  92. <p>Managers could now say the razorbacks do well as stocked adults, they reproduce in the wild, and their eggs hatch successfully. </p>
  93. <p>The question left unresolved is why the “young of the year” are not surviving, juvenile razorbacks are rarely seen in the wild. </p>
  94. <p>Unravelling the bottleneck between when the razorbacks hatch and when they become adults has become the new focus for managers.  This is where the Matheson Wetlands project came in.  Utah Division of Wildlife Resources partnered with the Natural Conservancy to build the fish nursery.</p>
  95. <p><figure id="attachment_9812" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9812" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-setting-light-traps-in-Matheson.94pct.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/Creighton-Katie-setting-light-traps-in-Matheson.250x188.jpg" alt="Katie Creighton, native aquatics biologists for Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, setting light traps in Matheson Preserve. The traps are used to monitor razorback sucker larvae. Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer" width="250" height="188" class="size-full wp-image-9812" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9812" class="wp-caption-text">Katie Creighton,  native aquatics biologists for Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, setting light traps in Matheson Preserve.  The traps are used to monitor razorback sucker larvae.<br />Courtesy &amp; Copyright Katie Creighton, Photographer</figcaption></figure>Creighton explains, “The main goal [of the project] is to get [the razorback suckers] off the endangered species list.  To recover them to self-sustaining populations that can maintain their numbers without…stocking.  It’s a pretty ambitious goal, especially because we have to do [it] in the face of continued water use and water development…The recovery program is not battling or trying to stop water development, its goal is [simply] to recover these species in the face of what is currently happening with water use.”</p>
  96. <p>Phaedra Budy, professor in the Watershed Sciences Department at USU and unit leader for U.S. Geological Survey Cooperative Fish &#038; Wildlife Research Unit said, “The Razorback sucker has intrinsic value to the [Colorado River system], is a critical member of the ecosystem, and deserves every effort for recovery.”</p>
  97. <p>This is Shauna Leavitt and I&#8217;m Wild About Utah.</p>
  98. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Credits:</span></span><br />
  99. Photos:<br />
  100. &nbsp; &nbsp; Courtesy US NPS, Zach Schierl, Photographer, Education Specialist, Cedar Breaks National Monument<br />
  101. &nbsp; &nbsp; Courtesy &amp; Copyright Shauna Leavitt,<br />
  102. Audio: Courtesy and Copyright<br />
  103. Text: Shauna Leavitt, USGS Utah Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Quinney College of Natural Resources, Utah State University</p>
  104. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Sources &amp; Additional Reading</span></span></p>
  105. <p>Leavitt, Shauna, Piute Farms Waterfall on Lower San Juan – a Tributary of Lake Powell, Wild About Utah, Aug 6, 2018, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/piute-farms-waterfall-on-lower-san-juan-a-tributary-of-lake-powell/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/piute-farms-waterfall-on-lower-san-juan-a-tributary-of-lake-powell/</a></p>
  106. <p>Razorback Sucker(Page 68), Utah&#8217;s Endandengered Fish, 2018 Utah Fishing Guidebook, Utah Division of Wildlife Services, <a href="https://web.archive.org/web/20190209082316/https://wildlife.utah.gov/guidebooks/2018_pdfs/2018_fishing.pdf" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildlife.utah.gov/guidebooks/2018_pdfs/2018_fishing.pdf</a></p>
  107. <p>Fish Ecology Lab, Utah State University, <br />
  108. <a href="https://www.usu.edu/fel/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.usu.edu/fel/</a></p>
  109. <p>Razorback sucker (Xyrauchen texanus), Upper Colorado River Endangered Fish Recovery Program, <a href="http://www.coloradoriverrecovery.org/general-information/the-fish/razorback-sucker.html" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">http://www.coloradoriverrecovery.org/general-information/the-fish/razorback-sucker.html</a></p>
  110. <p>Scott M. Matheson Wetlands Preserve, The Places We Protect, The Nature Conservancy, <a href="https://www.nature.org/en-us/get-involved/how-to-help/places-we-protect/scott-m-matheson-wetlands-preserve/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.nature.org/en-us/get-involved/how-to-help/places-we-protect/scott-m-matheson-wetlands-preserve/</a></p>
  111. <p>A Nursery for Endangered Fish, The Nature Conservancy, <a href="https://www.nature.org/en-us/about-us/where-we-work/united-states/utah/stories-in-utah/razorback-sucker-nursery-utah/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.nature.org/en-us/about-us/where-we-work/united-states/utah/stories-in-utah/razorback-sucker-nursery-utah/</a></p>
  112. <p><a href="" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer"></a></p>
  113. <p><a href="" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer"></a></p>
  114. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/building-a-warm-home-for-endangered-razorback-suckers-young/">Building a Warm Home for Endangered Razorback Suckers’ Young</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  115. ]]></content:encoded>
  116. </item>
  117. <item>
  118. <title>Hungry Hummingbirds</title>
  119. <link>https://wildaboututah.org/hungry-hummingbirds/</link>
  120. <pubDate>Mon, 27 May 2019 13:41:48 +0000</pubDate>
  121. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Ron Hellstern]]></dc:creator>
  122. <category><![CDATA[Birds]]></category>
  123. <category><![CDATA[broad-tailed hummingbirds]]></category>
  124. <category><![CDATA[hummingbird sugar water mix 1:4 parts]]></category>
  125. <category><![CDATA[Hummingbirds]]></category>
  126. <category><![CDATA[rufus hummingbirds]]></category>
  127.  
  128. <guid isPermaLink="false">https://wildaboututah.org/?p=9778</guid>
  129. <description><![CDATA[<p>Having witnessed people in poverty, as well as starving animals, I can never condone the fascination some Americans have with Hot Dog Eating Contests. Yet humans are poor competitors when compared to some members of the animal kingdom. To simplify the math, let’s say you weigh 100 pounds. Imagine eating 150 pounds of food every &#8230; </p>
  130. <p class="link-more"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/hungry-hummingbirds/" class="more-link">Continue reading<span class="screen-reader-text"> "Hungry Hummingbirds"</span></a></p>
  131. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/hungry-hummingbirds/">Hungry Hummingbirds</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  132. ]]></description>
  133. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p><figure id="attachment_8903" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-8903" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/hellstern_img_5997.resized.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/hellstern_img_5997.250x167.jpg" alt="Hungry Hummingbirds: Hummingbird at Feeder Courtesy and Copyright Ron Hellstern, Photographer" width="250" height="167" class="size-full wp-image-8903" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-8903" class="wp-caption-text">Hummingbird at Feeder<br />Courtesy and Copyright Ron Hellstern, Photographer</figcaption></figure>Having witnessed people in poverty, as well as starving animals, I can never condone the fascination some Americans have with Hot Dog Eating Contests.  Yet humans are poor competitors when compared to some members of the animal kingdom.</p>
  134. <p><figure id="attachment_8906" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-8906" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/hellstern_img_5993.resized.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/hellstern_img_5993.250x167.jpg" alt="Hungry Hummingbirds: Hummingbirds at Feeder Courtesy and Copyright Ron Hellstern, Photographer" width="250" height="167" class="size-full wp-image-8906" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-8906" class="wp-caption-text">Hummingbirds at Feeder<br />Courtesy and Copyright Ron Hellstern, Photographer</figcaption></figure>To simplify the math, let’s say you weigh 100 pounds.  Imagine eating 150 pounds of  food every day just to maintain your energy level!  I have about twenty guests at my home near Logan right now that eat one and one-half times their body weight every day, and they’ve been doing it for months.  Hummingbirds!</p>
  135. <p><figure id="attachment_9784" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9784" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/fish.michael.rufus_.hummingbird.8-23-09.101small.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/fish.michael.rufus_.hummingbird.8-23-09.101small.250x168.jpg" alt="Hungry Hummingbirds: With a length of 9.5 cm, the rufous hummingbird has the longest migration in the world in relation to its size. Photo courtesy and Copyright © 2010 Michael Fish" width="250" height="168" class="size-full wp-image-9784" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9784" class="wp-caption-text">With a length of 9.5 cm,<br />the rufous hummingbird<br />has the longest migration<br />in the world in relation to its size.<br />Photo courtesy and<br />Copyright © 2010 Michael Fish</figcaption></figure>We have a good mix of Broad-Tailed, Black-Chinned, and Rufous Hummingbirds that are busy at our feeders from early morning until 9:00pm.  Those three are the most common species in Utah although others, like the Anna’s, Costa’s and Calliopes are seen in our Southern regions.  And even though we have plenty of feeding stations at our home, it’s interesting how they will usually try to scare each other off each time they approach a feeder.  I keep telling them to share, but they won’t listen to me.</p>
  136. <p><figure id="attachment_9786" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9786" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/fish.michael.Broad-tailed-Hummingbird.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/fish.michael.Broad-tailed-Hummingbird.250x167.jpg" alt="Male Broad-tailed Hummingbird Selasphorus platycercus Copyright © 2010 Michael Fish" width="250" height="167" class="size-full wp-image-9786" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9786" class="wp-caption-text">Male Broad-tailed Hummingbird<br />Selasphorus platycercus<br />Copyright © 2010 Michael Fish</figcaption></figure>Their need for food makes sense due to their tremendous expenditure of energy.  Their heart rates are the fastest of any bird species at about 500 beats per minute…when resting, and 1,200 beats when flying.  And their wings beat up to 90 times…per second.  Even their breathing is race-paced at 250 breaths per minute.  They basically need to refuel constantly.</p>
  137. <p><figure id="attachment_9781" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9781" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bingham.black-chinned-hummingbird.on_.nest_.1500x721.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bingham.black-chinned-hummingbird.on_.nest_.250x120.jpg" alt="Adult Black-chinned Hummingbird incubating eggs in nest Archilochus alexandri Copyright © 2010 Lyle Bingham (cell phone through spotting scope)" width="250" height="120" class="size-full wp-image-9781" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9781" class="wp-caption-text">Adult Black-chinned Hummingbird<br />incubating eggs in nest<br />Archilochus alexandri<br />Copyright © 2010 Lyle Bingham<br />(cell phone through spotting scope)</figcaption></figure>Speaking about flying, they can go forward, backward, and even upside down.  And while their speed can approach nearly 50 miles per hour, they don’t shirk at long distances.  They winter in the tropics, but some will travel up to 2,500 miles one way to breed in Canada and Alaska.</p>
  138. <p>Some scientists are concerned about rising temperatures because flowers are blooming earlier in northern areas, which means that food source may be gone when the hummingbirds arrive.<br />
  139. While they also eat insects, you can attract hummingbirds to your yards with the right plants.  They like nectar plants like Columbines, Honeysuckle, Penstemon, Paintbrush, Bleeding Hearts and Trumpet Vines.  You can also supplement those nectar sources with feeders.</p>
  140. <p><figure id="attachment_9779" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9779" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bingham.black-chinned-hummingbird.chick_.in_.nest_.1400x700.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/bingham.black-chinned-hummingbird.chick_.in_.nest_.250x125.jpg" alt="Young Black-chinned Hummingbird with beak hanging out of nest Archilochus alexandri Copyright © 2010 Lyle Bingham" width="250" height="125" class="size-full wp-image-9779" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9779" class="wp-caption-text">Young Black-chinned Hummingbird<br />with beak hanging out of nest<br />Archilochus alexandri<br />Copyright © 2010 Lyle Bingham</figcaption></figure>They are attracted to the color red, but don’t buy commercial food mixes that have food coloring in them because it is harmful to them.  And never use honey or artificial sweeteners. Just boil 4 parts water to one part white-granulated sugar.  Let it cool and fill your feeders.   And in most cases, if you fill it, they will come.<br />
  141. If you’re lucky, the little guys may like your wildlife habitat so much they may even nest there, although those are difficult to see since they aren’t much larger than a quarter.  They generally lay two eggs about the size of navy beans, but please don’t disturb the little nest or chicks.</p>
  142. <p>Plant the correct flowers, nesting habitat, and put up feeders, and you may experience one of nature’s flying wonders…the Hummingbird.</p>
  143. <p>This is Ron Hellstern, and I am Wild About Utah.<br />
  144. &nbsp;<br />
  145. <span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Credits:</span></span></p>
  146. <p>Images: Courtesy &amp; Copyright Ron Hellstern<br />
  147. Audio: Courtesy and Copyright Kevin Colver<br />
  148. Text: Ron Hellstern, <a href="http://cachevalleywildlife.weebly.com/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">Cache Valley Wildlife Association</a>  </p>
  149. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Additional Reading</span></span></p>
  150. <p>Greene, Jack, Rufus Hummingbird, Wild About Utah, Aug 3, 2015,<br />
  151. <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/rufous-hummingbird/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/rufous-hummingbird/</a></p>
  152. <p>Kervin, Linda, Gardening for Hummingbirds, June 5, 2014, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/gardening-hummingbirds//" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/gardening-hummingbirds/</a></p>
  153. <p>Liberatore, Andrea, Hummingbird Nests, Wild About Utah, Jun 14, 2012,<br />
  154. <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/hummingbird-nests/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/hummingbird-nests/</a></p>
  155. <p>Strand, Holly, Hummingbirds in Utah, Wild About Utah, Sept 3, 2009,<br />
  156. <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/hummingbirds-in-utah/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/hummingbirds-in-utah/</a></p>
  157. <p>Strand, Holly, Heading South, Wild About Utah, Oct 28, 2010,<br />
  158. <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/heading-south/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/heading-south/</a></p>
  159. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/hungry-hummingbirds/">Hungry Hummingbirds</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  160. ]]></content:encoded>
  161. </item>
  162. <item>
  163. <title>Herps</title>
  164. <link>https://wildaboututah.org/herps/</link>
  165. <pubDate>Mon, 20 May 2019 14:42:43 +0000</pubDate>
  166. <dc:creator><![CDATA[Jack Greene]]></dc:creator>
  167. <category><![CDATA[Reptiles]]></category>
  168. <category><![CDATA[Vertebrates]]></category>
  169. <category><![CDATA[Collared Lizard]]></category>
  170. <category><![CDATA[Leopard Lizard]]></category>
  171. <category><![CDATA[Lizards]]></category>
  172. <category><![CDATA[Rattlesnakes]]></category>
  173. <category><![CDATA[Snakes]]></category>
  174.  
  175. <guid isPermaLink="false">https://wildaboututah.org/?p=9769</guid>
  176. <description><![CDATA[<p>Everywhere we go, people want to know, who we are, so we tell them- we are the herpers, the mighty, mighty herpers! Stumbling around the desert with fishing poles in hand. Hot, dry, no water within miles. A casual observer might question our sanity. But here’s the deal. We have full control over our mental &#8230; </p>
  177. <p class="link-more"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/herps/" class="more-link">Continue reading<span class="screen-reader-text"> "Herps"</span></a></p>
  178. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/herps/">Herps</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
  179. ]]></description>
  180. <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p><figure id="attachment_9767" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-9767" style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/pxhere.com_.long-nosed-leopard-lizard-Gambelia-wislizenii-Lizard.jpg"><img src="https://wildaboututah.org/wp-content/uploads/pxhere.com_.long-nosed-leopard-lizard-Gambelia-wislizenii-Lizard.250x140.jpg" alt="Herps: Long-nosed Leopard Lizard Gambelia-wislizenii Free Image, Courtesy PXhere.com" width="250" height="140" class="size-full wp-image-9767" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-9767" class="wp-caption-text">Long-nosed Leopard Lizard<br /><i>Gambelia-wislizenii</i><br />Free Image, Courtesy PXhere.com</figcaption></figure>Everywhere we go, people want to know, who we are, so we tell them- we are the herpers, the mighty, mighty herpers!<br />
  181. Stumbling around the desert with fishing poles in hand. Hot, dry, no water within miles. A casual observer might question our sanity. But here’s the deal. We have full control over our mental faculty.</p>
  182. <p>Our defense. First, our fishing poles are used for the capture and release of lizards. Remarkably fast and allusive, these rigs are the answer. A small slipknot noose using monofilament fishing line is attached to the end of the pole. The lizards often freeze as the line is dangled slightly in front of their nose and gently slipped over their heads. A quick upward flip and bingo (with a bit of luck) a lizard dances freely from the line’s end.<br />
  183. “I caught one!” alerts the others within shouting distance, and the crew soon assembles to view the prize. Photos are taken which includes GPS coordinates, then the victim passes multiple hands, and is released to resume its lizard business following the rude interruption. </p>
  184. <p><figure style="width: 250px" class="wp-caption alignright"><a href="https://www.nps.gov/tont/learn/nature/lizards.htm"><img style="border: 0px;" title="Western Banded Gecko, Courtesy NPS" alt="Herps: Western Banded Gecko, Courtesy NPS" src="https://wildaboututah.org/images/nps.gecko2.250x167.jpg" width="250" height="167" border="0" /></a><figcaption class="wp-caption-text">Western Banded Gecko<br />Courtesy NPS</p>
  185. <p></figcaption></figure>This has become an April tradition for our USU Wildlife Society students with a keen interest in herpetology. We relish the Mojave Desert surrounding St. George with flowers in full bloom and bird song in full tilt.<br />
  186. Our desert ramblings have revealed many herp treasures- spiny lizards, spectacled rattle snakes, desert iguanas, desert tortoise, chuckwalla, canyon tree frog to name a few. Within the past two years, we have assembled well over two dozen different species. The Mojave is second only to the Sonoran Desert for biodiversity. I’m always amazed how this parched, desolate land can support such a remarkable abundance of life forms.  The Mojave Desert hosts about 200 endemic plant species found in neither of the adjacent deserts.</p>
  187. <p>I’m going to end with a brief description of my favorite little lizard that appears so delicate, like a desert flower, it stands in stark contrast to this seemingly inhospitable environment. In good light its paper thin skin covered with minute scales, allows one to see the interior workings of its slender body.<br />
  188. The western banded gecko is secretive and nocturnal, foraging at night for small insects and spiders, often seen, silhouetted against the black asphalt of desert roads. It is one of the few reptiles that controls scorpion populations by eating their babies. If captured it may squeak and discard its tail. As a defense mechanism, it can also curl its tail over its body to mimic a scorpion. Geckos also store fat in their tails. Being they maintain a reduced metabolism at low temperatures, their tail fat can sustain them for up to nine months. Because the western banded gecko restricts its activities to nights, it is often seen, silhouetted against the black asphalt of desert roads. </p>
  189. <p>This is Jack Greene and I’m wild about the banded gecko, all its cousins, and this amazing land we call Utah!  </p>
  190. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Credits:</span></span></p>
  191. <p>Pictures: Banded Gecko Courtesy US NPS<br />
  192. Pictures Leopard Lizard, Courtesy PXHere.com<br />
  193. Text: Jack Greene, Bridgerland Audubon Society</p>
  194. <p><span style="font-family: Verdana; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: #2a7f55; font-weight: bold;">Additional Reading:</span></span></p>
  195. <p>Strand, Holly, The Lizard and His Tail, Wild About Utah, June 11, 2009, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/the-lizard-and-his-tail/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/the-lizard-and-his-tail/</a></p>
  196. <p>Repanshek Kurt, Western Banded Gecko, Wild About Utah, Feb 23, 2015, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/western-banded-gecko/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/western-banded-gecko/</a></p>
  197. <p>Strand, Holly, Gila Monsters, Wild About Utah, Feb 4, 2009, <a href="https://wildaboututah.org/gila-monsters/" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://wildaboututah.org/gila-monsters/</a></p>
  198. <p>One Biota Network, Noosing Technique for Capturing Lizards, YouTube, May 25, 2018, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkcOpPRfeug" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkcOpPRfeug</a></p>
  199. <p>Reptiles, Zion National Park, US National Park Service, <a href="https://www.nps.gov/zion/learn/nature/reptiles.htm" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.nps.gov/zion/learn/nature/reptiles.htm</a></p>
  200. <p>Reptiles, Canyonlands National Park, US National Park Service, <a href="https://www.nps.gov/cany/learn/nature/reptiles.htm" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.nps.gov/cany/learn/nature/reptiles.htm</a></p>
  201. <p>Species List, Arches National Park, US National Park Service, <a href="https://www.nps.gov/arch/learn/nature/species-lists.htm" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.nps.gov/arch/learn/nature/species-lists.htm</a></p>
  202. <p>Reptiles and Amphibians, Bryce Canyon National Park, US National Park Service, <a href="https://www.nps.gov/brca/learn/nature/reptiles.htm" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer">https://www.nps.gov/brca/learn/nature/reptiles.htm</a></p>
  203. <p><a href="" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer"></a></p>
  204. <p><a href="" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer"></a></p>
  205. <p><a href="" target="newWindow" rel="noopener noreferrer"></a></p>
  206. <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org/herps/">Herps</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://wildaboututah.org">Wild About Utah</a>.</p>
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