5 mind-blowing bugs that are active in winter

For those who don’t like bugs, winter is a great time to spend time outdoors. The usual biting insects are gone, and even ticks are less active. While insects have many clever ways of surviving winter, there are nonetheless a small number that stay active. These mind-blowing winter bugs are a real source of excitement for nature nerds like me, …

Why do worms come out when it rains?

Have you ever gone out after a rain and found worms all over your lawn, or along the sidewalk? While worms are usually hard at work in our yards and gardens every day, we hardly tend to see them. When the weather gets a little wet, suddenly, we’re liable to find them littering the sidewalk or trucking along the ground. …

How to detect spongy moths in your yard

Invasive species are a problem in natural areas just about anywhere on Earth. Some, like spongy moths (Lymantria dispar), can damage plants on your property and be a major nuisance. If you live in the Northeastern U.S., you might have problems with this plant. But how do you detect spongy moths? In this Outdoor Tips post, I’ll guide you through …

What’s the difference between butterflies and moths?

Butterflies and moths are active, fascinating insects that you’ll find all over the world. With over 160,000 species, these bugs in the order Lepidoptera are a fixture in outdoor spaces. Although most people will be quick to tell you that there is a difference between butterflies and moths, scientists tend to disagree. In reality, when we get down to trying …

Why do bugs die on their backs?

People often uses phrases like “going belly up” to describe dead or dying things. The idea of dead animals with legs sticking up in the air seems especially iconic for insects. For instance, exterminator companies’ logos will often feature a dead bug on its back with its feet high in the air. Furthermore, “dead bugs” are a popular abdominal exercise. …

12 scary nature facts for spooky season

It’s always worth having cool nature facts at your disposal, whether it’s for a conversation starter or trivia night your local pub. In this Biologist Ruins Everything post, I’ve collected 12 spooky, horrible nature facts to shock and terrify your friends. While ghost stories around the campfire are great, nature’s imagination and ingenuity far exceeds our own. This is no …

Do squirrels land like superheroes?

In Fall 2020, some viral photos seemed to imply that our friendly neighborhood squirrels have some superhero flair. The pictures showed squirrels in the same super-cool pose that action movie stars use for dramatic landings. “The Superhero Landing” as wisecracking Marvel superhero Deadpool calls it, is iconic cool, and apparently our fuzzy tree-climbing neighbors are in on the swagger. But …

14 wild cicada facts

In many parts of the world, the familiar drone of insects is a welcome sign of summer. While crickets serenade us by night, cicadas are among the loudest and most active daytime singers of the bug world. These big, loud, and surprisingly stealthy insects are more often heard than seen, and have a truly alien appearance. In this Wildlife Spotlight …

18 awesome facts about tigers

With their terrific strength, mysterious nature, and stunning beauty, tigers have fascinated people for thousands of years. These incredible predators are the epitome of wild, and inspire awe and admiration worldwide. But how well do you really know tigers? With this Wildlife Spotlight post, you can become a tiger superfan by learning these 18 awesome tiger facts. 1. Their orange …