Butterflies are one of the most beautiful elements of the natural world, and scientists now recognize that they can also serve as one important indicator of the health of ecosystems.
With all of the wonderful apps available, it is still a good idea to have a shelf of guides to call on. We love paging through them while planning our next exploration, exploring their beautiful illustrations, and carrying our favorites with us for quick reference.
BRDC recently hosted a Primitive Technology course as part of Galax Middle School Enrichment Week. The students were engaged with a variety of hands-on activities that connected them to skills used by early American Indians and materials found in their backyards.
"Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs."
"The technology boom of recent years has given kids numerous reasons to stay inside and play, while parents' increasing safety concerns make it tempting to keep children close to home. But what is being lost as fewer kids spend their free time outdoors? Deprived of meaningful contact with nature, children often fail to develop a significant relationship with the natural world, much less a sense of reverence and respect for the world outside their doors."
"On a desert island in the heart of the Galapagos archipelago, where Darwin received his first inklings of the theory of evolution, two scientists, Peter and Rosemary Grant, have spent twenty years proving that Darwin did not know the strength of his own theory. For among the finches of Daphne Major, natural selection is neither rare nor slow: it is taking place by the hour, and we can watch."