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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Fossil Care

Preserving the Fossil Record: When it comes to many extinct species, both Imaginary and non-Imaginary, the only thing we know about them is the evidence we can collect from their fossilized remains.

When out hiking, it can be very tempting to pick up any fossils we find. Dinosaur bones, petrified unicorn horns, footprints preserved in stone, plant patterns imprinted into mud that has now hardened - they’re all interesting to look at and think about, and fun to take home with us.

Scientists rely not only on the fossil itself to discover clues about extinct life forms, but also on the location of the fossil in relation to everything around it. Did the fossil belong to a creature that lived in the desert, or in the forest? Was it once lying at the bottom of an ocean, or did it live on a mountaintop? If the fossil is picked up and carried away as a souvenir, we will never know the answer.

Fossils found lying on the surface can also sometimes mean that a larger collection of fossils may lie beneath the ground. If we pick up a bit of fossilized bone and take it away, the hidden cache may never be discovered.

So please, if you are out hiking and should happen to find any fossils, take a photograph as your souvenir, but leave the fossils where you found them. - 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.