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The Field Guides

The Field Guides

71
Followers
107
Plays
The Field Guides

The Field Guides

The Field Guides

71
Followers
107
Plays
OVERVIEWEPISODESYOU MAY ALSO LIKE

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About Us

Nature nerds rejoice! The Field Guides is a monthly podcast that will bring you out on the trail, focusing on the science of our North American wildlife.

Latest Episodes

Bonus 09 - Finding a Job in the Wild

Have you ever dreamed of ditching your day job and pursuing a career in the woods? Maybe working with wolves in the desert southwest or conducting plant surveys in the wilds of Alaska? Well, Matt Gaffney did it! Leaving behind a job in digital marketing, he went back to school to get his degree in environmental studies and went on to work a series of seasonal positions with the National Forest Service. Bill caught up with him in August of 2019 in the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia. Join them on a hike on Spruce Knob (the highest point in WV) as Matt shares his adventures and advice on pursuing a career in the wild!

46 MIN8 h ago
Comments
Bonus 09 - Finding a Job in the Wild

Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 2) - The Coywolf?

This month, Steve and Bill present part 2 of their episode on coyotes, focusing on the questions, “How big of a threat to livestock are coyotes?” and, “Is the coyote in the east a new species?”

57 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 2) - The Coywolf?

Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 1)

Awooooo! This month, Bill and Steve talk all about coyotes.

71 MINAPR 13
Comments
Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 1)

Ep. 42 - It's Worth the Wait

During this episode, Bill breaks down the topic of reproductive delays, with a special focus on the American black bear (Ursus americanus). Come join the guys as they “peek inside the den”, and uncover this seldom-discussed aspect of the sex lives of some of our fascinating (and randy) mammals.

71 MINFEB 1
Comments
Ep. 42 - It's Worth the Wait

Ep. 41 - The Autumn Episode (Pumpkin Spice-flavored)

…And we’re back! After a lengthy hiatus, Bill and Steve return with an episode focused on the fall. Specifically, they look into why fall is the neglected season when it comes to climate change research. Is it a conspiracy? Is it a plot by the ‘deep state’ to play favorites with the seasons? Probably not, but the guys have some fun uncovering the possible reasons why the natural events that occur in the fall are more difficult for researchers to pin down and quantify.

59 MIN2019 NOV 25
Comments
Ep. 41 - The Autumn Episode (Pumpkin Spice-flavored)

Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 2 - How Safe is Bird Banding?

Welcome to part 2 of our episode on bird banding! In this part, we look at what the research has to say about how birds fare during and after the banding process. All research that involves capturing and handling wildlife poses some level of risk for the target species. So, what about bird banding? Are injures rare? Do injured birds fare worse than birds that are banded without injury? Join Steve and Bill for a deep dive into a question that many bird banders have wondered about over the years: how safe is bird banding?

41 MIN2019 AUG 1
Comments
Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 2 - How Safe is Bird Banding?

Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 1 - All About Bird Banding

A bird alights on a nearby branch, and, for a brief moment, a flash of silver on the bird’s leg catches your eye. If you’re fortunate enough to get a closer look, you might notice that the reflection comes from a tiny, silver bracelet wrapped around the bird’s leg – a bird band. Bird banding (or bird ringing, for our European listeners) has been used for over a century to better understand the life histories of our avian neighbors. But that’s just one of many reasons why bird banding has been so valuable to researchers. In this episode, Bill and Steve delve into the details of what banding is all about. Part one covers the history and basics of how bird banding works, and part two provides an overview of research that looks into how harmful bird banding might be to the birds involved. This episode was recorded on July 14, 2019 at the Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve in Cheektowaga, New York. Reinstein Woods is operated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

54 MIN2019 AUG 1
Comments
Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 1 - All About Bird Banding

Ep. 39 - The Alliterative Purple Pitcher Plant (Carnivorous Series #1)

Carnivorous plants are the renegades of the plant world. About 800 known species have gone from primary producers to immobile predators. In this episode, Steve goes on and on and on about everything you want to know about carnivorous plants (and a few things you don’t want to know). You’ll learn what it means to be a carnivorous plant, what it means to be a pitcher plant, and a few interesting things about the Purple Pitcher Plant, Sarracenia purpurea. Enjoy!

72 MIN2019 JUL 1
Comments
Ep. 39 - The Alliterative Purple Pitcher Plant (Carnivorous Series #1)

Ep. 38 - Ants in Our Plants

Have you ever heard of myrmecochory? It may not pop up much in casual conversation, but this strange word is your doorway to a tiny, fascinating world of ant-plant interactions. Myrmecochory is seed dispersal by ants (don’t worry, we cover how to pronounce it in the episode), and while it may seem simple on the surface, it’s a beautifully complex spectrum of behaviors and benefits, , including some questionable ones. Myrmecochory has long been considered a classic example of mutualism, in which two species benefit from a shared interaction, but recent research has called this idea into question. Are the ants really benefiting? Is it possible that plants are parasitizing the ants? Are the ants inadvertently ‘cleaning’ the seeds, inoculating them against harmful soil microbes? There is so much more to myrmecochory than Bill and Steve ever imagined! Join the guys as they hit the trail, exploring the seldom-seen world of ants and plants. This episode was recorded at Nature View Park...

53 MIN2019 MAY 15
Comments
Ep. 38 - Ants in Our Plants

Ep. 37 - Bill and Steve Go Timberdoodlin'

In spring, a naturalist’s fancy turns to thoughts of Timberdoodlin’, and that means heading out into the spring twilight, finding a brushy meadow, and listening for the buzzy “Peent!” of the American Woodcock (Scolopax minor) . AKA the Timberdoodle, this odd bird (it’s a shorebird that doesn’t live near the shore) performs a strange and stunning sky dance that is a must-see for any wildlife lover.

-1 s2019 APR 4
Comments
Ep. 37 - Bill and Steve Go Timberdoodlin'

Latest Episodes

Bonus 09 - Finding a Job in the Wild

Have you ever dreamed of ditching your day job and pursuing a career in the woods? Maybe working with wolves in the desert southwest or conducting plant surveys in the wilds of Alaska? Well, Matt Gaffney did it! Leaving behind a job in digital marketing, he went back to school to get his degree in environmental studies and went on to work a series of seasonal positions with the National Forest Service. Bill caught up with him in August of 2019 in the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia. Join them on a hike on Spruce Knob (the highest point in WV) as Matt shares his adventures and advice on pursuing a career in the wild!

46 MIN8 h ago
Comments
Bonus 09 - Finding a Job in the Wild

Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 2) - The Coywolf?

This month, Steve and Bill present part 2 of their episode on coyotes, focusing on the questions, “How big of a threat to livestock are coyotes?” and, “Is the coyote in the east a new species?”

57 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 2) - The Coywolf?

Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 1)

Awooooo! This month, Bill and Steve talk all about coyotes.

71 MINAPR 13
Comments
Ep. 43 - The Coyest Dog Around (Part 1)

Ep. 42 - It's Worth the Wait

During this episode, Bill breaks down the topic of reproductive delays, with a special focus on the American black bear (Ursus americanus). Come join the guys as they “peek inside the den”, and uncover this seldom-discussed aspect of the sex lives of some of our fascinating (and randy) mammals.

71 MINFEB 1
Comments
Ep. 42 - It's Worth the Wait

Ep. 41 - The Autumn Episode (Pumpkin Spice-flavored)

…And we’re back! After a lengthy hiatus, Bill and Steve return with an episode focused on the fall. Specifically, they look into why fall is the neglected season when it comes to climate change research. Is it a conspiracy? Is it a plot by the ‘deep state’ to play favorites with the seasons? Probably not, but the guys have some fun uncovering the possible reasons why the natural events that occur in the fall are more difficult for researchers to pin down and quantify.

59 MIN2019 NOV 25
Comments
Ep. 41 - The Autumn Episode (Pumpkin Spice-flavored)

Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 2 - How Safe is Bird Banding?

Welcome to part 2 of our episode on bird banding! In this part, we look at what the research has to say about how birds fare during and after the banding process. All research that involves capturing and handling wildlife poses some level of risk for the target species. So, what about bird banding? Are injures rare? Do injured birds fare worse than birds that are banded without injury? Join Steve and Bill for a deep dive into a question that many bird banders have wondered about over the years: how safe is bird banding?

41 MIN2019 AUG 1
Comments
Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 2 - How Safe is Bird Banding?

Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 1 - All About Bird Banding

A bird alights on a nearby branch, and, for a brief moment, a flash of silver on the bird’s leg catches your eye. If you’re fortunate enough to get a closer look, you might notice that the reflection comes from a tiny, silver bracelet wrapped around the bird’s leg – a bird band. Bird banding (or bird ringing, for our European listeners) has been used for over a century to better understand the life histories of our avian neighbors. But that’s just one of many reasons why bird banding has been so valuable to researchers. In this episode, Bill and Steve delve into the details of what banding is all about. Part one covers the history and basics of how bird banding works, and part two provides an overview of research that looks into how harmful bird banding might be to the birds involved. This episode was recorded on July 14, 2019 at the Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve in Cheektowaga, New York. Reinstein Woods is operated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

54 MIN2019 AUG 1
Comments
Ep. 40 - Put a Ring On It, Part 1 - All About Bird Banding

Ep. 39 - The Alliterative Purple Pitcher Plant (Carnivorous Series #1)

Carnivorous plants are the renegades of the plant world. About 800 known species have gone from primary producers to immobile predators. In this episode, Steve goes on and on and on about everything you want to know about carnivorous plants (and a few things you don’t want to know). You’ll learn what it means to be a carnivorous plant, what it means to be a pitcher plant, and a few interesting things about the Purple Pitcher Plant, Sarracenia purpurea. Enjoy!

72 MIN2019 JUL 1
Comments
Ep. 39 - The Alliterative Purple Pitcher Plant (Carnivorous Series #1)

Ep. 38 - Ants in Our Plants

Have you ever heard of myrmecochory? It may not pop up much in casual conversation, but this strange word is your doorway to a tiny, fascinating world of ant-plant interactions. Myrmecochory is seed dispersal by ants (don’t worry, we cover how to pronounce it in the episode), and while it may seem simple on the surface, it’s a beautifully complex spectrum of behaviors and benefits, , including some questionable ones. Myrmecochory has long been considered a classic example of mutualism, in which two species benefit from a shared interaction, but recent research has called this idea into question. Are the ants really benefiting? Is it possible that plants are parasitizing the ants? Are the ants inadvertently ‘cleaning’ the seeds, inoculating them against harmful soil microbes? There is so much more to myrmecochory than Bill and Steve ever imagined! Join the guys as they hit the trail, exploring the seldom-seen world of ants and plants. This episode was recorded at Nature View Park...

53 MIN2019 MAY 15
Comments
Ep. 38 - Ants in Our Plants

Ep. 37 - Bill and Steve Go Timberdoodlin'

In spring, a naturalist’s fancy turns to thoughts of Timberdoodlin’, and that means heading out into the spring twilight, finding a brushy meadow, and listening for the buzzy “Peent!” of the American Woodcock (Scolopax minor) . AKA the Timberdoodle, this odd bird (it’s a shorebird that doesn’t live near the shore) performs a strange and stunning sky dance that is a must-see for any wildlife lover.

-1 s2019 APR 4
Comments
Ep. 37 - Bill and Steve Go Timberdoodlin'
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