30 March 2012

Hourly Reminder

Just a reminder: Earth Hour is tomorrow at 8:30 p.m. wherever you are. People will be switching off their lights when the clock strikes 8:30 in their respective time zones.

My plans to go "beyond the hour" include unplugging my computer and keeping it off for the whole day and turning my lights off from 8:30 through the rest of the night.

I plan to spend my somewhat-off-the-grid day catching up on chores, reading, jogging, and doing a little bird-watching.

Please consider participating in Earth Hour and maybe even going beyond the hour.

28 March 2012


If you're an aspiring birder or just want to know a little more about birds, check out the video below. Produced by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, it provides some tips about how to find warblers. The whole process is explained very well, and many of the tips could apply to various types of birds.

27 March 2012

Play it Again

Today, I saw a great video, in which a woman interviewed her mother about the mother's experiences during the Great Depression. It was another reminder about the value of learning from the past.

The video is a little long, but its lessons make it worth watching if you have the time. You can watch it below. Also, it was part of a larger TreeHugger article about sustainable living. To see the whole article, click here.

21 March 2012

Hour by Hour

This year's Earth Hour event is just 10 days away. On March 31 at 8:30 p.m. local time, people will turn off their lights to bring attention to the need for addressing global warming.

Since it began in 2007, Earth Hour has become a worldwide event, so by turning your lights off at 8:30, you'll be joining millions of people around the planet. Also, if you can, think of ways to go "beyond the hour." For instance, I am planning to keep my computer off and unplugged for the entire day.

For more information, click here. You can also check out the video for Earth Hour below:

20 March 2012

Ready, Set, Photograph

The National Wildlife Federation's annual photo contest has begun, meaning a number of prizes, including the $5,000 grand prize, are up for grabs.

Children 13-17 can enter the youth-level competition, and individuals 18 and older can enter the general-level competition. Each level has seven categories, including backyard habitat; birds; and landscapes and plant life.

Submit your entries by July 16. The entry fee is $20 per set of 10 pictures. For more information, click here.

15 March 2012

Wild Week

The National Wildlife Federation is gearing up for its National Wildlife Week event next week.

National Wildlife Week is a celebration of wildlife, and it's also part of the NWF's Be out There campaign, which emphasizes the importance of children getting to experience the outdoors.

With spring coming officially next week, National Wildlife Week is a good time to kick-start your year of outdoor experiences. The NWF is also using the event to provide information about different animals, paying special attention to 45 "extra-ordinary" species. For more details on learning about and experiencing wildlife next week, click here.

12 March 2012

A Name from the Past for the Future

Until I was nearly 14, my bedroom door had a Cousteau Society sticker on it. Only when I no longer lived in that room did the sticker leave my life.

I was never actually in The Cousteau Society, but because I was a budding environmentalist, the sticker was more than a random decoration for me. I recall watching Jacques Cousteau's television programs, particularly one about Antarctica. The shows' information about and calls to protect the environment resonated with me.

Partly because I remember what Jacques meant to my youth, I was excited to learn about the work of his granddaughter, Alexandra, whom I mentioned a few entries ago. Alexandra has taken her grandfather's connection with the water and put her own spin on it, shining light on the water issues the planet currently faces and those we are likely to face in the future.

Today, I had a conversation about the growing importance of water issues, and after some thinking, I realized that because of Alexandra's work, the Cousteau name, first etched into my brain through a green and white sticker, is also going to help represent one of the key concerns of the planet's future. I think Jacques would be proud.

For more information about water issues and Alexandra's work, go to her Blue Legacy Web site.

11 March 2012

Plant a Flower Day

Tomorrow is Plant a Flower Day, so if you can, celebrate by getting a head start on your garden.

For those of us who live where it's better to not plant outside yet, the National Wildlife Federation has some tips for starting seeds inside. Even cooler, the article talks about ways to reuse household items as pots for your seeds. Some of the items, including toilet paper tubes, make biodegradable pots.

06 March 2012

The Madness

For the second year in a row, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology will be running its March Migration Madness tournament, in which birds compete for the title of people's favorite.

This year, the lab is taking nominations for the last four slots in the tournament, so go nominate your favorite on Facebook. Last year, the cedar waxwing was runner-up to the black-capped chickadee.

Go, CW.

For more information about March Migration Madness, click here or watch the following video: