Rob Kanter

October 12, 2018 - Environmental Almanac

Birding with my brother

In late winter of 1984 my younger (and only) brother, John, assigned me little bit of reading, the section called “Sky Dance” from the April entry in Aldo Leopold’s book, A Sand County Almanac. This was a bit of a switch in our relationship, since at the time I was a college senior majoring in English at Xavier University in our hometown of Cincinnati, and he was a junior majoring in wildlife management at Ohio State in Columbus—I was the one who assigned any mutual reading.

Sketch of chimney swifts from a 1913 publication for teachers in New York giving them material for "nature study."


September 21, 2018 - Environmental Almanac

An appreciation for chimney swifts

One of the easiest birds for many people to see also attracts the least attention, and that's too bad because chimney swifts are fascinating creatures.

Chimney swifts dropping in to roost for the night.

A snapping turtle crosses a road

Rob Kanter

June 01, 2018 - Environmental Almanac

Appreciating Common Snapping Turtles [from the archive]

Two kinds of snapping turtles occur in North America, and both of them can be found in Illinois. Alligator snappers, which most people will never see, are listed as endangered, and they inhabit only larger rivers and streams in the southern part of the state, the Mississippi, Ohio and Wabash Rivers, and tributaries directly connected to them. In fact, no wild alligator snapping turtle was documented in Illinois for the thirty years between 1984 and 2014, when scientists from the Illinois Natural History Survey discovered one.

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