Author: Angus Pratt

  • A Possible Break in One of Evolution’s Biggest Mysteries

    The little-understood history of the whales and how barnacles may be the key to understanding how giant mammals evolved underwater. Peter Brannen | The Atlantic | Dec 2016 [ Full Story ] Source: A Possible Break in One of Evolution’s Biggest Mysteries

  • Dog Salmon (Oncorhynchus keta)

    Dog salmon. So their jaws look like dog jaws. Or is it that because they run last – middle of November to December – and freeze into the ice where Inuit would thaw them to feed their dogs. This much maligned salmon is just fascinating. Hardy. Beautiful. And mysterious. The life cycle is fairly straightforward. […]

  • Sucia Island Storm Damage

    Sucia Island is the closest San Juan Island to my home port of Birch Bay. So when the yacht clubs in the area promoted a cleanup day for the State Park on the Island it was a natural that I would work out a way to be there. I have lots of story ideas from […]

  • Morning song

    One of the surest signs of spring is the new birdsong that we hear in the morning. Like lilting lifting music it pulls out of bed and on to the patio with a cup of hot coffee. Close eyes and listen. Warblers, vireos, finches… For a prairie boy though it is the warbling song of […]

  • Glaucous-winged Gull, Larus glaucescens

    Look closely! See that bright red spot on the bill. That is known as a breeding spot. It appears on sexually mature and active male and female Glaucous-winged Gulls at this time of year. (Ain’t that a ten pound name for a gray wing?) The breeding spot really has not much to do with breeding. […]

  • Black Oystercatcher (Haematopus bachmani)

    Is it a bird, is it a plane or is it something else? From the initial description I said it was probably a merganser but something didn’t add up. And the description “like a crow with a flaming orange bill” was a dead giveaway. They are moving from the shorelines to the offshore islands for […]

  • Inspired by the strangest of sources

    Writing for me has become a passion but like many it ebbs and flows. I’m inspired by the strangest source. For several weeks I have been harbouring the thought that really to write here I need to write to someone – someone special. I know who that person is. I have an idea of how […]

  • Fraser Basin Council

    One of the things that I learned very quickly about ecology and landscape management was that there is always a context. In the San Juans a major part of the context is the Fraser Valley. That there is a group that is focussed on this area and that they are producing a “Sustainablity Report Card” […]

  • Varied Thrush – Ixoreus naevius

    BirdWeb – Varied Thrush So we all know that what we know as the Robin is really the American Thrush? After our wild snowstorm (November 26, 2006)we set up our regular winter feeding station. And we watched the regular winter visitors – juncos – chickadees and such. And so when the red breasted bird showed […]

  • Balancing Business and Ecology…

    ScienceDaily: Mixing Exploitation And Conservation: A Recipe For Disaster Near and dear to my heart are those stories and studies that look at finding the balance between human survival – business and the ecosystem in which they exist. This study was done in Holland with an exquisitely ecosystem adapted bird. The red knot is a […]