Educator James Fester wrote this post. Depending on where you live, this time of year can be a prime opportunity to see bats—those small, nocturnal, winged creatures. In the eastern U.S., bats search for food and mates in the fall before hunkering down to hibernate. This year, October 24-31 is Bat Week, a valuable chance to learn about and celebrate the role bats play in … Continue reading This Bat Season, Go Beyond the Myths With Your Learners
Defend your coastline from invasive species—enjoy a meal! It’s National Invasive Species Week! Invasive species—sometimes called “alien invaders”—are organisms that are not native to the places where they live. They compete so successfully in new ecosystems that they displace native species, and disrupt important processes like food webs. In the ocean, alien invaders can cause serious damage to habitats where seafood is caught or harvested. … Continue reading Eat An Alien Invader!
‘Tis the season to celebrate our favorite fabulous felines! That’s right: Next weekend is Big Cat Weekend here at National Geographic! Big cats include lions, tigers, jaguars, leopards, and snow leopards. These extraordinary creatures, which play an incredibly important role in their ecosystems, cannot be replaced. If they are not at the top of the food chain, the delicate balance of trophic relationships will be … Continue reading Welcome the Week with Big Cats
ENVIRONMENT As the climate warms, snowshoe hares are increasingly ditching their winter wardrobes and keeping the brown fur they sport during the rest of the year. Now, a new study shows how: by borrowing a gene from a jackrabbit. (Science) Why does the snowshoe hare change coats to begin with? Check out our terrific gallery of downloadable illustrations for some help. Teachers, scroll down for … Continue reading How the Snowshoe Hare Is Losing Its Winter Whites
ENVIRONMENT Experiments show that people value pretty reefs over healthy ones. (Hakai) Use our lesson plan to help introduce students to coral reef ecosystems. Teachers, scroll down for a quick list of key resources in our Teachers Toolkit. Discussion Ideas New research indicates our bias toward pretty pictures may influence our perception of coral reefs. What are coral reefs? Coral reefs are incredibly biodiverse ecosystems … Continue reading We Have Unrealistic Beauty Standards for Coral, Too