Field Frame Friday: Squad goals.

Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) congregate in areas where natural cracks in the ice provide easy access into and out of the water, and while Antarctic waters remain around -2°C (~28°F) which may seem cold to us, these seals are well adapted to spending hours at a time in the water. [Caption and Photo taken (under…

Field Frame Friday: Wasps make good neighbors.

Female yellow-rumped caciques (Cacicus cela) choose to build their unique, enclosed, hanging nests next to wasp nests to provide protection from mammals and botflies. [Photo by Grace Davis in Barro Colorado Island, Panama; Caption by Maggie Creamer] Reference Corwin, P. (2012). Yellow-rumped Cacique (Cacicus cela), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab…

Field Frame Friday: I’m sitting on what?!

Lesser Noddies (Anous tenuirostris), make their nest using leaves and their own guano (fancy word for poop). Waste not, want not? [Photo by Nick Chudeau in Cousin Island, Seychelles; Caption by Karli Chudeau] Reference Surman, C., Burbidge, A., & Fitzhardinge, J. (2016). Long-term population trends in the vulnerable Lesser Noddy Anous tenuirostris melanops at the…

Field Frame Friday: Alligator dances are better than middle school dances.

The American Alligator’s (Alligator mississippiensis) courtship involves nighttime “alligator dances” where the alligators will swim in pairs for hours before deciding whether or not to mate. Now that’s what I call a nice first date! [Photo by Grace Davis in Barro Colorado Island, Panama; Caption by Maggie Creamer] Reference Vliet, K. A. (1989). Social displays…

Field Frame Friday: Snap a “s-whale-fie!”

In a field that is dominated with hydrophones and listening to vocalizations, it is always great when researchers can snap a picture of whale flukes. Many whale individuals, including this blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) can be identified by unique markings and shapes on their tail flukes. [Photo by Alycia Drwencke and caption by Karli Chudeau]…

Field Frame Friday: How did they get the name spider monkey?

Black-handed spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) eat mostly fruit, but also occasionally eat tree bark, nuts, eggs, insects, and even spiders! However, these monkeys get their name from their long, lanky, spidery limbs and tail, not from their occasional arachnid snacks. Is that considered cannibalism?! [Photo by Grace Davis and caption by Maggie Creamer] Reference van…

Field Frame Friday: An island where birds rule all!

In the Seychelles, an island chain off the east coast of Africa, White-tailed tropicbirds (Phaethon lepturus) on Cousin Island don’t have the threat of predators so they nest on the ground in the hollows of trees or root nooks. This pair could care less how close humans were to them, but it is still important…

Field Frame Friday: Forgetfulness = Biodiversity!

The Central American Agouti (Dasyprocta punctata) is a small rodent that looks similar to a guinea pig. Their favorite treats are nuts and seeds, and sometimes they store these treats in the ground to eat later. Sometimes agoutis forget about the nuts and seeds and they grow into a new plant. These forgetful rodents are…