Posts Tagged ‘Walt Anderson’

  • Bird of the Month: Peregrine Falcon January 2019

      Peregrine Falcon By Russ Chappell The word “peregrine” means “wanderer” or “pilgrim,” and Peregrine Falcons reside world-wide. Thanks to captive breeding and a 1972 ban on DDT, this species has risen from near extinction in the 20th century to now populate every continent except Antarctica. The United States-Canada Stewardship rates peregrines as 10 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score, but it is no longer on the State of North America’s Birds Watch List. However, their breeding areas, especially in the Prescott area, are monitored and protected during certain times of the year, and you should check with the Prescott National Forest Service before entering a Peregrine Falcon breeding area to avoid issues. Considered the fastest animal on earth, at least in a dive or “stoop” the Peregrine Falcon is capable of speeds of over 200 MPH, able to withstand 18G, and possesses exceptional vision which is protected by special membranes at high speed. They are capable of bringing down prey twice their size with their powerful talons and a unique beak. Adaptable to almost any habitat some Peregrines migrate over 15,000 miles a year, while other choose to call a selected region home year-round. In coastal areas nests are usually built on cliffs in “eyries” however being extremely adaptable many reside in cities with high skyscrapers that provide both elevation and a variety of birds to hunt

  • Bird of the Month: Surf Scoter

    By Russ Chappell A juvenile Surf Scoter was recently spotted at Watson Lake along the shore northeast of the boat dock near Arizona 89. This surface-diving duck is classified as an accidental, winter visitor in Carl Tomoff’s “Birds of Prescott, Arizona Checklist.” “Surfers” migrate from Canadian and Alaskan breeding grounds to the coasts of North America during the winter feeding on mollusks, crustaceans, aquatic insects, small fish, and vegetation like aquatic weeds, wild celery, musk grass, and seeds. They usually feed in water less than 10 meters deep, near breaking waves, with flocks diving in a synchronicity fashion. Dive duration varies depending on prey density, season, and water depth. Adult male Surf Scoters weigh about 2.3 lbs and average 19 inches in length, with females 2 lbs and 17 inches. Males are a velvet black with white on their foreheads and napes, with thick bills that appear orange at a distance but have white, red, and yellow spots, with a black spot near the base. Females are brownish, becoming lighter towards their bellies. There are paler patches below their eyes and occasional white markings on their nape. The bills of females are black with shades of green or blue. Juveniles appear similar to females but are paler with whitish breasts and bellies. Displaying little vocalization, males make a gurgling call and a sharp puk-puk while courting. Females make a crow-like

  • Environmental influences: Micah Riegner cross-pollinates art and science

    Nov 28, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, Portfolio6,610 CommentsRead More »

    By James Dungeon It’s hard not to have a guttural reaction to scorched chaparral, especially in Yavapai County. Recent history aside, its stark contrast with verdant foliage is a siren’s call, tempting the eye along a push-pull of contrasts. Linger, though, and you’ll miss something special. “Down the way: a coyote standing in the middle of the road,” said Walt Anderson, a Prescott College professor, recounting a field trip with his “Interpreting Nature Through Art and Photography” class. “It was rather peculiar, standing there on a high-traffic road,” said Walt, who, until then, had been pointing out the impacts of the Doce and Yarnell Hill fires. “Then, out came the bobcat.” It was a singular moment. The kind that clarifies your place in the natural world. Blink. And it’s gone. Only one of Walt’s students —the one who alerted him to the coyote — was present enough to snap a photo. “That was Micah Riegner,” Walt said. “What can I say? He’s always prepared.” At 21-years-old, Micah’s already an accomplished international birder and tour guide who’s worked with expeditions that have documented new species of birds in the Amazon. He credits much of his success as a naturalist to the influence of art. “Whenever you sketch something, it forces you to spend more time looking at it,” Micah said. “Then, suddenly, you can see subtle things you didn’t see before.” In

Celebrating art and science in Greater Prescott.

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