Explore Nature ...

Nature is everywhere … Enhance your understanding of the plants, insects, animals & complex interactions by reading about the ORCA & other natural areas.

Wet, wet, wet

Sweet Sam, Bob Montanaro’s dog,, stands at the trailhead to the Oslo Riverfront Conservation Area, wondering about the wet conditions. This picture was taken in early September of 2016, a year with “usual” summer rainfall. Every year is different, and…

Love is the Air

It’s that time of year, again! Love bugs flourish twice per year: April – May and August – September. Also know as honeymoon bugs, double-headed bugs, and March flies, these short-lived insects are harmless to people but hell on automotive…

Crab Craftery

Populations of blue land crabs (Cardisoma guanhami) have declined dramatically over the years due to over-harvesting and habitat loss. They are most active at dawn and dusk near the full moon. September and October tend to be their most active…

Seeding is Believing

This Florida butterfly orchid (Encyclia tampensis) was flowering and forming seed pods in the Florida Medical Entomology Laboratory parking lot. We tend to look for Nature in parks and conservation areas and not where we park. Marylou Rethman (Class of…

Crab (Spider)

It’s a girl crab (spider)! University of Florida’s Featured Creatures describes the spineybacker orbweaver (Gasteracantha cancriformis) as “one of the most colorful spiders in Florida” and as “one of the most conspicuous.” The information in this post comes from that…