The Natural History of Rock Art
By David E. Purcell
Native Americans made rock images for many reasons. Among the images visible at rock art sites are depictions of animals and sometimes plants, a tradition that began more than 40,000 years ago in the Paleolithic era in Europe and Asia. These images provide scientists with important information about the climate and environment of the time and place the art was made.
Discovery of Lystrosaurus and a scientific revolution
By David D. Gillette, Nov 30, 2018
In December of 1967, New Zealand geologists mapping 240-million-year-old Triassic rocks in the desolate interior of Antarctica stumbled upon some fragmentary bones. A few months later they brought the fragments to paleontologist Edwin H. Colbert for identification. He wasn’t ready for this surprise.
Researchers look to the forest ground for native urban turf
By Jan Busco, Nov 3, 2018
One beautiful day in early November, three women walk through the ponderosa pine forest near the Museum of Northern Arizona. Their attention is not on the trees or mountain views, but down on the grasses. They are collecting seeds from black dropseed, a native grass that serves as habitat for native moth larvae, and provides cover and forage for mammals and seed eating birds.
New cabinets for old bones
Oct 8, 2018
For decades, dinosaur bones and other fossils were kept in wooden drawers on the Museum of Northern Arizona research campus. Now the paleontology storage is getting an upgrade, the museum equivalent of swapping out an old wooden dresser with sticky drawers for a well-designed walk-in closet.
Herbarium: A look at a new environment
Sept 10, 2018
Drawers of corn in many colors and stacks of pungent juniper - the Walter B. McDougall Herbarium is a dried garden holding important knowledge for researchers seeking to understand a changing environment. “Basically you’re documenting biodiversity. That plant at that place at that time.”
Reality bites: Facts about Flagstaff-area mosquitoes
Aug 11, 2018
Like all horror films, the scene starts tranquil – a streamside picnic or a softball game near a pond – until disturbed by an eerie sound. This year the buzz of mosquitoes has turned many outdoor Flagstaff events into fear fests, as the bloodsuckers come in for attack in broad daylight.