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The Museum will be closed Thursday, November 26, for Thanksgiving.
Marvin Bouknight, Charlotte Nature Museum director, names the Eastern Screech Owl as his favorite Museum resident.

Maybe you can't ask a mother to choose her favorite child, but you can ask a naturalist to choose a favorite animal!

Although we don't play favorites when it comes to caring for the animals that live at Charlotte Nature Museum, certain animals hold a unique appeal for our equally unique staff members.

Marvin Bouknight, director
I have been interested and excited about any and all wildlife as long as I remember. When I was 13 years old, I saw a film in school about owls and became fascinated by them and the ornithologists that were studying them. Knowing that I was interested in birds an… Keep reading.

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Hibernating animals such as groundhogs gorge themselves during fall harvest season to build up reserves of fat that will keep them warm during their long winter’s nap.

Autumn is officially here – time for raking leaves, sipping pumpkin lattes, putting together Halloween costumes and trading shorts and swimsuits for pants and jackets.

But humans aren’t the only ones who prepare for a seasonal change. Our furry, feathered and scaly friends know it’s fall too.

Here are some changes in local wildlife behavior you might notice:

• Both farmers and animals are busy during fall harvest season. Hibernating animals such as groundhogs, chipmunks and bears feast on nature’s buffet of berries, apples, nuts and seeds to build up reserves of fat that will keep them w… Keep reading.

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Mosquitoes can carry and transmit diseases, so it’s important to find a way to keep these pests off of you.

Mosquitoes have been out full force this year due to the extremely wet summer, so our naturalists have been fielding lots of questions about them. They are fascinating creatures!

Some mosquitoes lay their eggs on the surface of stagnant water, while others lay their eggs in damp soil where flooding will occur. Once they hatch from eggs, young mosquitoes need water to grow into their larval, pupal and adult stages. We’re most familiar with the adult mosquito, which does not reside in water but travels to find food.

Both male and female mosquitoes rely on nectar-producing plants and flower f… Keep reading.

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Want more backyard gardening tips? Be sure to stop by the Museum this Saturday for Earth Day Play Date.

Spring has sprung and it’s time to start your spring gardening!

When planning and planting your spring garden, you want to keep several things in mind.

Make sure you plant something that is non-invasive. You don’t want your yard or garden taken over by an aggressive plant.

Avoid poisonous plants. Believe it or not, there are many plants where some or all parts of the plant are poisonous if ingested. Keep this in mind if you have children or pets that will be in your yard. Know the plants you are planting, and find out if they would be a danger in your yard.

Try to stick with native p… Keep reading.

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Weaving a wonderful web

It’s that time of year again where it seems with each turn, we encounter one of our favorite animals to fear: the lovely spider.

The truth is I am actually very fond of these little guys; they play such an important role in the ecosystem and are often not given enough credit by us humans. In fact, just this morning, I was observing numerous spiders creating intricate insect catching systems in my backyard. In the short five minutes I was outside, I discovered a small triangulate orb weaver (Verrucosa arenata) in the grass, a small cluster of basilica spiders (Mecynogealemniscata) in the … Keep reading.

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Summer is in full swing! And, I think there is nothing more relaxing than sitting outside on a warm summer night watching the lightening bugs put on their show. However, these beautiful nights are often accompanied by sweltering hot days than can sometimes be a little more than just uncomfortable. Many humans, as well as animals often find themselves constantly seeking shade and refreshing water during these extra hot days.

Shade can be found in many places where there are towering structures, but nothing can compare to the natural shade trees provide. Trees provide cool and well-lit are… Keep reading.

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