Tag Archives | out of the fog 2016

A new streetlight, powered by solar panels bolted to its spine, sits at the end of the Santa Cruz wharf.

Solar streetlight illuminates innovative solutions

This story starts with poop. Bird poop. A solar panel shouldn’t be caked in white crust. It should be a dark flat shelf open to the sky, soaking up sunlight, resting near the streetlight it’s meant to power perched on the end of a wharf. But imagine you’re a seagull used to roosting on that…

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Diver Ryan Brennan hangs with a Mola mola off the coast of Southern California

Credit: Bradley Beckett

Face to Face with the Ugly, Marvelous Mola Mola

It’s been described as a “swimming head,” and can weigh as much as an adult rhinoceros—and it also turns out to be one of the most fascinating fish in the sea With a final breath of air, I descend beneath the surface among swaying kelp and flying sea lions. I’m in search of a creature that…

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How to grow a jellyfish

At nine in the morning, an hour before the Monterey Bay Aquarium opens to the public, the curator of husbandry operations walks across a tiled tundra of empty exhibit halls. Watery displays drench the floors in blue-green light, and a groggy-eyed sculpture of a whale the size of a bus hangs from the ceiling overhead. Paul…

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A monarch butterfly at rest (Image by Captain-tucker via Wikimedia Commons, licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0)

Monarch Munchies

(Or, how to create the perfect parasite-free butterfly garden.)     Sometime in elementary school, an article in my local paper alerted me to the plight of the monarch butterflies. Milkweed is only food monarch caterpillars eat, the article said, and it’s also the only plant where the adult butterflies lay their eggs. But wild…

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Oregon wolf OR-11, image courtesy of Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

A cultural and emotional history of wolves in Oregon

On November 9th, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife voted 4-2 to remove wolves from Oregon’s state endangered species list, while increasing penalties for killing wolves. This surprised many people, myself included. You see, until 2008, there were no wolves in Oregon. They had been extinct for 70 years. Before I go any further,…

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