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At this time of year, stalking through the forest with my camera in hand in search of White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus) is one of my favorite activities. The crunching of leaves under my boots, the crisp cold air and the smell of the decomposing leaves are all part of the autumn whi…

Operant conditioning (behavior modification) is a metaphor for accountability. B.F. Skinner was an experimental psychologist at the University of Minnesota in the 1940s whose name and work came to be associated with operant conditioning and behavior modification. Skinner trained small animal…

Operant conditioning (behavior modification) is a metaphor for accountability. B.F. Skinner was an experimental psychologist at the University of Minnesota in the 1940s whose name and work came to be associated with operant conditioning and behavior modification. Skinner trained small animal…

Early fall brings an amazing insect to our flower gardens across the United States. It is the White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hyles lineata), also called the Hawk Moth or Hummingbird Moth. No matter what name you use, this is a large nectar feeding moth that looks and acts just like a hummingbird.

Sitting at the edge of the nest, the young Osprey is calling out in a begging call, trying to be fed. His high-pitched screams echo across the lake and, unfortunately go unanswered. His parents are not around. He is all alone and, worse yet, he is hungry.

I spend the entire month of June on a boat watching the sunrise and sunset. I do this because I am leading wildlife photography tours, to capture images of Loons. I am so fortunate to be outside, surrounded by nature for such a sustained amount of time. I see and hear so many cool birds and …

Last week, while leading a wildlife photography workshop to capture images of American black bears (Ursus americanus), we experienced a cuteness overload. Over three and half days, we saw many mother bears with spring cubs.

The key to “seeing” nature is to stop and look. I know that seems rather obvious but it’s true. The simple act of stopping and looking is really all it takes to start to see more nature. This is something I learned a long time ago, but it seems that I need to stop and remember it every now a…

As we near the close of the 2021-22 school year, I have been reflecting not only on this year, but also on my seven-year career at Prior Lake-Savage Area Schools (PLSAS) that has been filled with meaningful relationships, wonderful accomplishments and complex challenges. Throughout it all, I…

It’s Mother’s Day weekend. A time to thank the moms out there for all that they do. As a mom, I definitely enjoy the acknowledgment and pampering that often comes with the special day. My only problem is that I have a tough time answering the question, “What do you want for Mother’s Day?”

I am fascinated by the diversity of mother nature. And this was abundantly clear to me the other day while I sat in a tiny chair blind, in the dark, waiting for the sun to come up and for a ruffed grouse to enter the habitat that lay before me.

Recently while leading a photo tour throughout Florida to photograph birds, it occurred to me how much things have changed. I don’t mean how much things have become worse, or crowded, but rather how much several species have increased in population.

My family has just made it through our busiest months of the year. Between November and January, we celebrate our four birthdays as well as the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. This not only means calendars that are full of family gatherings and special celebrations, it also means that m…

Once again, I found myself sitting outside in my small photo blind trying to capture a handful of images of birds in a winter/snowy setting. The temperatures were a balmy 5 below zero and I was starting to feel the cold penetrate my many layers of clothing.

Having just returned from three weeks in Yellowstone leading photo tours and workshops, I am tempted to write more about the several encounters I had with the large charismatic predator, the gray wolf. However, this time I think I will write about a small, rather un-charismatic predator. A p…

I genuinely believe that every single person has the capacity to change the world for better or for worse. We live in a time where so many Americans are hurting in many ways with the pandemic crisis, increased competition for jobs and economic security, and the pressure to simply survive is …

The complexity of nature is often hard to understand and even harder to witness. Sure, we learn about it in school, read about it in a book, or watch it on a TV nature documentary, but it isn’t until you see it firsthand that you start to understand and appreciate the complexity of nature. I…

Years ago, Marcia and I gathered with a group of friends on New Year’s Eve for dinner and a game of Trivial Pursuit. I enjoyed Trivial Pursuit, but if I won too many games, they’d ignore me and turn to a discussion of current events.

Winter can be a challenging time for wildlife, especially when deep snow blankets the land and the wind blows bitterly cold. Birds fluff up their feathers and search high and low for anything to eat. Squirrels are extra plump and fuzzy and dig down through the snow in hopes of finding a forg…

My professional purpose has always been to provide life chances for all students. As Superintendent of Prior Lake-Savage Area Schools this means I am committed to ensuring all students have what they need to be successful; each student feels a sense of belonging and all students and staff ar…

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