Sex and Gender: Diversity in Chimps, Bonobos, and Us

Photo by Keith Lobo on Frans de Waal is a Dutch biologist and primatologist who thinks humans have some silly ideas/constructs about sex and gender. He’s written a number of books, most recently Different: Gender Through the Eyes of a Primatologist. I heard him express his strong opinions on Alan Alda’s Clear and Vivid … Continue reading Sex and Gender: Diversity in Chimps, Bonobos, and Us

I Think We All Need This… We must hope the penguin's assistant is treating him/her well--and the proper conditions for penguin good health are just outside the camera's range (an ice bath, for sure). In my heart, I know this cutie shouldn't be in captivity. I've persuaded myself that the artiste is having lots of fun and will be just … Continue reading I Think We All Need This…

A Couple of Garden Haikus

One feathery… Resplendent CardinalStraddles bough with familyFeeds babe, Mom looks on. Photo by Chris F on (I wish you could have seen Mom; she looked around as if to say, "As soon as this is done, I'm outta here.") The other furry… Brown rabbit pausesWhite-footed gray cat snoozesShared spot, different days. Photo by Steffi … Continue reading A Couple of Garden Haikus

Team Magpie Wins Round One

Photo by Daniil Komov on Not long ago, I posted some fascinating insights I’d learned about Lessons from Plants. Our flora friends depend on one another for the important things in life. They don’t hold back in asking for help. I wasn’t surprised, then, to learn about similar behaviors in birds. And I’d long … Continue reading Team Magpie Wins Round One

News About Climate Change–Some Good, Some Bad–Courtesy of Lizards…

Tiny lizards inspired biologist Thor Hanson to write a book: "Hurricane Lizards and Plastic Squids." I heard him speak in yet another fascinating Alan Alda Clear&Vivid podcast. Hanson’s book, Alda says, is about “the ways plants and animals are responding as we humans are messing with their lives.”


This is a story of changed hearts leading to changed behavior—in the backdrop of climate change. Spanning more than 15 years, it has heroes and villains, triumphs and tragedies, and a mostly happy ending—perhaps. As I can’t do justice to the drama and complexity here, I encourage you to read it in its entirety in the Daily Beast.

Frogs Do It, Bees Do It–Even Educated “We’s” Do It…

I altered the first line of an old song (“Let’s Fall in Love”) to shamelessly draw you in to a discussion of an important topic.

As an intro, here’s a little Haiku for These Times

Social distancing—
Ants isolate selves when ill
Healthy queen makes room.

Why are ants so much smarter than a growing number of humans? I’m speaking now of the American variety (of humans, not ants), but surely there are others.