That’s a Wrap: Day 3 of #AntsOnBroadway

Time sure flies when you are having fun! Amy and I concluded our final day of field work for #AntsOnBroadway on Thursday. The weather continued to hold — sunny and even warmer than we had experienced the previous two days. For our last day of ant-collecting, we headed up to the northern end of Manhattan — beyond the jurisdiction of most tourist city maps.

Although the fieldwork portion of #AntsOnBroadway has concluded for the season, we still have lots more to share and tell in the coming weeks. […]

By | October 21st, 2012|ants, Explainer, Projects, Urban Ecology, Your Wild Life Team|5 Comments

Back on Broadway

Your Wild Life is back in NYC! You heard about our most recent work in the Big Apple from Amy Savage, an ant researcher with our team, in late September.

And now we’re back! This time we’re on a mission to expand our studies of urban ants from the 40 sites that Amy visited this summer to over 60 locations in the medians of Broadway and adjacent urban parks (like Central Park, Morningside Park, and Riverside Park).

In August Amy plopped the ants she collected into alcohol to preserve them for later identification and further study. This time around, we’re […]

By | October 16th, 2012|ants, Explainer, Projects, Urban Ecology, Your Wild Life Team|1 Comment

Wild Life of Our Homes: Tanzania Style

What a fun surprise this afternoon to receive this tweet from our friend, Dr. Danielle Lee (DNLee):


You may recognize DNLee as the author of The Urban Scientist, a blog on the Scientific American Network where she writes about urban ecology, evolutionary biology & diversity in the sciences. This summer, DNLee took her readers and followers into the field with her to TANZANIA.

There, she spent two […]

By | September 21st, 2012|Explainer, Homes, Projects, Video|0 Comments

Field Notes from the Arthropod Hunters

**Today’s post features Dr. Nancy Brill, a new member of the Arthropods of Our Homes team. Welcome Nancy! You’ll have the opportunity to meet the Arthropods of Our Homes gang and learn more about their exciting project (and see the vials and vials of critters they’ve collected in Raleigh-area homes) at Bugfest 2012, the annual entomological extravaganza hosted by the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences on Saturday, September 15.**

Several weeks ago I joined the Arthropods of Our Homes team (located at the Nature Research Center in downtown Raleigh) to discover how human behavior and […]

By | September 11th, 2012|Arthropods, Events, Explainer, Projects, Your Wild Life Team|6 Comments

Plating Pit Microbes

Over the last few days, we’ve shared updates and observations from #PitStart, a pilot study examining the effects of deodorants and antiperspirants on armpit microbes, coordinated by our friends in the Genomics and Microbiology Lab at the Nature Research Center.

You may have heard our scientists and volunteer participants mention plates of their armpit bacteria. By plates, we’re referring to petri dishes – not dinner plates – that contain a special nutritious medium on which the microbes can grow. You got a close-up of my plates from the first day of #PitStart as well as those […]

Intern Diaries: Studying armpits in a fish bowl

*Today we have a guest post from yet another awesome undergraduate working with Your Wild Life team – Megan Ehlers has been spending her summer as an intern at the Nature Research Center*

On some days, I feel like I am under more pressure than Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible. I’m an intern in the Genomics & Microbiology Laboratory at the Nature Research Center at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences. I work in a shiny new lab, surrounded by high-tech machines used for DNA analyses, the likes […]

Camel Cricket Cliff Notes

As previously mentioned, we’re going to introduce you to some of the undergraduate students and recent grads who work hard behind-the-scenes to keep Your Wild Life ticking.

Today, recent graduate Katlin Mooneyham explains how she learned to ID camel crickets.

We here at Your Wild Life have been talking a big game lately about camel crickets. We asked you to report your sightings and share photos of the leggy beasts in your basement.  Thanks so much to so many of you that have heeded our […]

Your Backstage Pass to DNA Extraction

Over the course of the next few weeks, we’re going to introduce you to the undergraduate students and recent grads who work hard behind-the-scenes to keep Your Wild Life ticking.

Today, sophomore Justin Hills explains the in’s and out’s of DNA extraction.

Cotton swab? Check. Belly button? Check. Three seconds of wondering, “What am I doing?” Check. But finally, you just did it. You swabbed your belly button (or door sill or armpit…) and returned your samples back to the Dunn Lab at NC State University. So what happens now? What classified operations will take place in the lab to unlock the […]