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Charlotte Nature Museum naturalists recently set up a game camera on a well-worn trail in the wooded areas around the Museum. Check out the video footage of a young red fox coming and going, as well as a well-fed and large raccoon!

Many animals have adapted to the presence of humans, which is a necessity in an urban environment. You've probably seen birds, rabbits and squirrels in your own backyard, which are pretty common species of urban wildlife.

At Charlotte Nature Museum, we find evidence of a variety of urban wildlife in and around the Paw Paw Nature Trail, Fort Wild and the buffer zones between habitats.

We recently set up a game camera on a pretty worn trail in the wooded areas around the Museum and our camera captured footage of a young red fox coming and going, as well as a well-fed and large raccoon.

Keep reading.

Filed Under: The Wild Around Us
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Volunteers from Audubon NC, Wells Fargo, Mecklenburg Audubon Society and Mecklenburg Country recently installed almost 100 bird-friendly native plants, including 17 different varieties, at the entrance to Charlotte Nature Museum. The project was completed thanks to a generous grant from Wells Fargo's Environmental Solutions for Communities program.

Volunteers from Audubon NC, Wells Fargo, Mecklenburg Audubon Society and Mecklenburg Country recently gathered to install native plants at the entrance to Charlotte Nature Museum to attract birds and pollinators.

"Our native wildlife, our native flowers and our native plants are just as beautiful as a lot of the ornamentals," said Museum director Marvin Bouknight. "So by teaching people that they can make their yard look nice, look landscaped, but can also be beneficial to wildlife, that's one of the big goals of having a garden like this out here."

The garden features almost 100 bird-fr… Keep reading.

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After migrating to warmer climates for the winter, hummingbirds have returned to Charlotte and recently were spotted in front of Charlotte Nature Museum.

Director Marvin Bouknight used a slow-motion camera to capture this hummingbird as it approached a feeder.



 

Want to feed the hummingbirds in your backyard?

Make a nectar with 4 cups of water and 1 cup of sugar. Use only white table sugar (granulated sugar). Do not use powdered sugar, honey, molasses, or other sweeteners. Red food coloring is not necessary to add to nectar. Research has shown that red nectar solutions do not i… Keep reading.

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A Charlotte Nature Museum naturalist cleans a young water snake that was caught in a glue trap.

Although commonly used for pest control in homes and commercial buildings, glue traps can have unintended consequences for wildlife, something that Charlotte Nature Museum had a run in with recently.

A woman brought in a small snake stuck in a trap, which we quickly identified as a juvenile water snake. The snake was so saturated in the glue, it could not move. Its jaw was disjointed and stuck in an awkward, painful-looking position.

Naturalists immediately went to work on the snake, gently rubbing mineral oil onto its shiny scales while prying it away from the glue.

Once extracted fr… Keep reading.

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A weak yellow-bellied slider with overgrown claws finds respite in a tank at Charlotte Nature Museum after naturalist Nikki Panos removed a wire and soda can that had been attached to his shell. The turtle was later returned to his home in Freedom Park.

Recently, I had the unfortunate task of dealing with the repercussions of someone's intentional and harmful actions against a yellow-bellied slider (Trachemys scripta scripta) at Freedom Park.

A family of good Samaritans rushed into the Museum, worried about a turtle they said had been caught up in wire. Grabbing some wire cutters, thinking this was just a turtle who had found his way into trash, I hastily made my way down to the lake only to find something more.

This turtle had been made the object of a cruel prank.

Someone had drilled a hole into the bottom of his shell and attached … Keep reading.

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If the thought of those eight crawly legs makes you want to reach for a shoe, here are some reasons to squash that fear and celebrate instead:

• Spiders feast on local disease-carrying insects, safeguarding your family’s health and keeping garden pests at bay.

• Spiders also get eaten. They’re a valuable protein source for invertebrates, amphibians and reptiles. Some countries even regard spiders as a delicacy. Fried spiders are a common dish in Cambodia and are believed to offer diners good luck in parts of South America and Thailand.

• Spider venom is used in important scientific resea… Keep reading.

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From the Director

Marvin Bouknight

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Nikki Panos

Naturalist

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