Author Archives: David George Haskell

In memory: Cassia

Four births, one death. Cassia delivered healthy quadruplets, an astonishing feat for a goat doe, but one that claimed her life. Cassia had the sweetest personality, was a doting mother to her many kids, and was a strong elder, respected … Continue reading

Posted in Goats | Tagged , | 25 Comments

Goat graphemes

Part III of the Snow Grapheme series (I and II here). For the Year of the Goat, cloven hooves on granular snow, with accents by chicken. I believe the Cudzoo Goat Girls may be drawing poems about the eight 八 … Continue reading

Posted in Goats | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Peepers: freeze protection strategies

When the temperature dropped below forty degrees, the frogs shut up. A few hours later, we hit the twenties, the pond was ice and the rocks from which the frogs had called were snow-covered. The only sound was the creak … Continue reading

Posted in Bioacoustic revelry, Frogs | Tagged , , , | 18 Comments

Heck yeah: Peepers, peepers.

Rain + warmth = Pseudacris crucifer. The spring peeper. Spring? Seriously? Appearing for one night only at a backyard pond in Tennessee. Tomorrow: the freeze returns. They are calling at an ear-ringing 85+ decibels. These frogs are so loud that … Continue reading

Posted in Bioacoustic revelry, Frogs | Tagged , | 19 Comments

Dead wood and the woodpecker’s g-force

About fifteen years ago, the local electrical company hired a crew of subcontractors to cut and trim any trees that were deemed a threat to powerlines. The crew gave the sugar maple in our front garden a lop-sided haircut, slicing … Continue reading

Posted in Archosaurs, Bioacoustic revelry | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Crash, hop. Inscriptions on flakes.

  The motions of a landing, wing-folding, strutting, tip-toeing, recorded on an icy pond. Most likely a sparrow. Snow scribing. Here are the plants at work, from last year.

Posted in Archosaurs, Water | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Hospital bacteria: in my blood, in my IV.

I recently had a run-in with some bacterial cousins, courtesy of a small post-surgical wound. The bacteria were winning, so I spent a few days in the hospital where attentive medical staff mainlined antibiotics into my arm. The treatment worked, … Continue reading

Posted in Microbes, Travels | Tagged , , | 14 Comments

What is a “seahawk” anyway?

A sports team of ambiguous nomenclature and symbolism takes the field today. The seahawk logo matches the appearance of no Seattle bird that I know of. The logo design itself appears not to be a hawk, but an eagle, a … Continue reading

Posted in Archosaurs | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Sandhill Cranes at Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge, TN

Tens of thousands of cranes gather at Hiwassee. Gruuu gruuu: sound resonates within the trachea coiled within their sternum. Horn section of the avian band. An ancient sound; Sandhill Cranes have flown across North America for at least ten million … Continue reading

Posted in Archosaurs, Bioacoustic revelry | Tagged , | 21 Comments

Je suis Charlie?

Charlie Hebdo is back in circulation. But freedom of expression is of course massively restricted in many parts of the world. Je suis Charlie? Unfortunately the answer is too often, no. For a couple of practical steps that you can … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | 4 Comments