Let's face it, lawn is still a much loved landscape feature. Is it possible to have lawn and protect the environment? New research suggests properly managed lawn can help off-set carbon dioxide and combat climate change. This is science of the heart, folks. If you love your lawn, manage it in a way that helps the environment. To read the research: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/02/170208150146.htm. See also: http://content.yardmap.org/learn/native-grasses-for-your-native-lawn/
Scientists are looking at the various impacts of increased CO2 in the atmosphere. In his studies on goldenrod, an important native flower for pollinators, Lewis Ziska found protein levels in wildflowers has decreased by a third since the mid 1800's. Could this be another "stressor" in the lives of bees? To read more: http://www.politico.com/agenda/story/2017/09/13/food-nutrients-carbon-dioxide-000511?lo=ap_a1.
If left alone lawns turn brown in the hot summer months. Many people think of these lawns as dead or unkempt, but it is a completely normal phase in a.
An inch-long dragonfly, Pantala flavescens, beats the Monarchs' migration distances, which may exceed 4,400 miles! Genetic evidence suggests they fly all over the world, mating with each other creating a gene pool that is consistent world-wide. To learn more about this extraordinary finding: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/03/160302150020.htm
The average North American yard is dominated by lawn and impervious areas that are useless to birds. YardMap volunteers increase the usefulness of yards and other private lands for birds and other wildlife.
On May 27th, the EPA and the U.S. Army released a new Clean Water Rule that more clearly defines protections under the Clean Water Act. The new rule focuses on streams, floodplains and isolated wetlands like prairie potholes and vernal pools that are part of the "significant nexus" of current jurisdictional waters. Vernal pools are seasonal and lack breeding fish populations. They are the only habitat many amphibians can successfully reproduce in.
Researchers from Ohio State and Cornell University collaborated on a project to measure the effects of increased woody habitat and rates of predation on nesting birds. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0169204614002643). If you resist brush piles for this reason, reconsider, and visit YardMap to learn more. http://content.yardmap.org/learn/habitat-types/brushpiles/
Concrete and asphalt in urban areas are impermeable. Storm water courses through the solid landscape as runoff and collects pollutants and sediment that accumulate in the waterways. Urban trees reduce N and P in runoff and grow larger as a result. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/11/151125130017.htm
"2% of private lands are formally protected, either owned outright or under conservation easement. Though small in proportion, these 24 million acres protected by land trusts and private conservation groups make up a network that is nearly as large as the entire National Park Service system in the lower 48."--State of the Birds Report, 2013
As one of the smartest known birds, Ravens (and other Corvidae) are fascinating to explore. In a recent study, when given the chance to trade-up for better food snacks, Ravens quickly took up the offer. But, if they were cheated on the deal by one of the researchers, the Ravens, when given the choice, would choose to deal with other researchers that were fair, even one month later! Read the story here: https://www.treehugger.com/animals/ravens-remember-people-who-have-done-them-wrong.html…