Walking Rocks?

Query: When I was in Death Valley earlier this year, I saw some enormous 750-pound rocks that appear to travel across the desert on their own. I remembered your article about rock tortoises, and wondered if that’s what these rocks could be?

Corn of Plenty (Part 4 of 4): A Field Guide by Dr. Midas Welby

Corns of the Air: Air-corns utilize their horns for jousting, playing tic-tac-toe, and spearing food in mid-flight. Air-corns often lurk undetected in trees, wood piles, and rain gutters. When bored, they use their horns to ring the doorbells of unsuspecting humans. When the door begins to open, the air-corn flies away.


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Going On Hiatus

December 6, 2014: I am loving college, but I have to admit, I’m overwhelmed.

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Pine Cone Feeders

A Present For Imaginaries: When winter comes, I get concerned about providing extra shelter from the elements for Imaginaries. Recently, I read about people who build wildlife brush shelters out of branches and plants in their yards, and thought this was a great idea.

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Finding New Species of Imaginaries : Next to working as a field agent for Iranigami, my favorite thing to do is to look for new insects.

Each year, about 7,000 new species of insects are discovered. I read that scientists estimate that there may be up to two million species of insects on the planet, of which only about 900,000 have been identified so far. Many insects, like the Hercules beetle or the twisted-wing parasite, are odd-looking, or have strange and unusual behaviors, just like an Imaginary might.

I think that lots of insect discoveries could have been classified as Imaginaries, but since they’re just insects and not something big and dramatic like a dragon or an ogopogo, nobody ever thought to disbelieve in the existence of an unusual species of insect just because it’s rare.

I would like to discover a new insect. If I discovered an insect that nobody ever saw before, and documented it scientifically, then I could give my information to one of the Iranigami sympathizers who work at the Environmental Protection Agency. Then, if the new insect was put on the list of endangered species, that insect’s habitat could come under protection of the EPA. If that happened, then any other Imaginaries that live in the same territory would also benefit.

So not only are new and undiscovered insects potential Imaginaries themselves, the study of insects is helpful for the protection of the larger Imaginaries.

I think that the study of insects is very interesting and fun. All you really need is a jar, a magnifying glass, and a notebook. Here are my rules for insect study:

1) If you catch an insect, let it go where you found it.

2) Never keep an insect in captivity for longer than a few hours. This is especially true for butterflies, some of which only live for 24 hours. I mean, how would you like to spend your entire life span in a jar?

3) Keep the insect in the shade during observation. If your camera doesn’t have a macro attachment, practice drawing insects before you go out into the field, so that you can make your field notes quickly.

4) Don’t kill the insect, or put it on a pin or anything. Let it live.

5) Make good notes on date, weather, and location conditions for your study. If you are observing the behavior of an insect in its environment, write down everything you see, even if the behavior of the insect seems meaningless to you at the time.

If you find any really cool insects and can’t find pictures of them in insect books, let us know here at You just never know when the next insect you see could be an Imaginary. - BUG, Field Agent, Iranigami


Copyright © 2012, 2013, 2014 by Penelope Stowell. All rights reserved. This website is a work of fiction and does not depict any actual persons, creatures, places or events.