Daily Archives: May 18, 2015

Remembering Mount St. Helens

mount-st-helens-harry glicken USGSMay 18, 1980

I remember it. I was safely ensconced on the east coast, but I had a friend in Portland who had to wear a dust mask for a week and sweep inches of ash from her driveway. It was fascinating and terrifying to follow the story on the news.

I visited the mountain a few years ago – the visitor’s center tells the amazing story in detail. And the drive through the recovering landscape is unforgettable.

See some more stunning photos here.

Eagle Versus Porcupine

Golden Eagle with porcupine quill.

Golden Eagle with porcupine quill.

We’re used to thinking about wild animals being threatened by humans. But they also have to contend with other formidable potential foes.

“In 17 studies, dating from 1909 to 2009, [scientists]  found reports of at least nine bird species that had known the pain of the [porcupine’s] hostile quills, the researchers report in the current issue of The Wilson Journal of Ornithology. Included in the list were other golden eagles, a bald eagle, a peregrine falcon, a few great horned owls, several hawks, and even a ruffed grouse. In seven cases, the spines proved fatal or nearly so.”

Read the article by Emily DeMarco in Science News here.