I was looking for a tug-of-war stuffie for Ashley and saw a sloth one. She loves it. I think she may just hang on to it forever. 📷🐕
It would probably be too much to add on to my busy schedule of Esperanto group meetings, and yet I imagine re-founding the Megatherium Club.
They spent their weekdays in the rigorous and exacting work of describing and classifying species. But their nights were spent in revelry.
Source: Megatherium Club – Wikipedia
I’m torn. It’s finally dry enough that I could probably go out on the patio and squeeze in a jump rope workout. Or I could just have another beer.
At least I don’t need to distance myself socially from my sloth pillow.
Our collection of giant microbe stuffies does not include a coronavirus, but it does include Ralph, our rhinovirus stuffie, the blue guy on the far right (next to Yoko, our brewer’s yeast). A coronovirus probably looks pretty similar to a rhinovirus.
My sloth pillow has been moved from being on display in the living room to its highest and best location: On the window seat in the study. #mbfeb
Sloth magnetic poem of the day:
Look what I found
Look what I found on the freebee table at Winfield Village! A sloth stuffie!! He has three toes!!! (The sloth is my totemic animal.)
I need to improve my drawing
I need to improve my drawing skills enough to draw a recognizable raccoon and opossum. I will then do a series of comics in which brave opossums hold off the raccoon threat, with the help of an occasional hedgehog, sloth, and slug.
Edited to add: And a box turtle. Box turtles are also on the side of right and good.
Gathering garlic mustard
I’ve been occasionally joining Jackie when she does stewardship workdays at natural areas around the county as part of her Master Naturalist work. They’re fun, and they fit in very well with my shift away from exercise and toward movement. Our work Sunday, clearing garlic mustard from the South Arboretum Woods, is a great example.
(Garlic mustard is a nasty invasive, largely because the first-year growth leafs out very early, and covers the ground almost completely. Native plants emerge a little later in the spring, by which time they can’t get enough light to get going. The upshot is that the understory loses most of its natural diversity, becoming just a vast carpet of garlic mustard.)
What we did Sunday was make our way through the woods, spotting and then pulling up all the second-year garlic mustard. (It’s a biennial. The first year is the low ground cover. The second year it puts up a flowering stalk and produces seeds. If you can get the flowering stalks before they set seed, you can make a dent in the local garlic mustard density.)
What struck me was how similar our activity was to “gathering” à la hunting and gathering. It was physically similar—walking through the woods, and then squatting, bending, reaching, and pulling. It was also mentally similar—doing exactly the same pattern-matching that someone seeking to gather edible or medicinal plants would do.
I suspect that both of these aspects of this activity enhance the well-known beneficial effects of “forest bathing” (aka spending time in the woods).
The area we were clearing has a lot of downed branches, big and small, some partially or completely hidden by the ground cover, making for a complex walking surface—more good stuff for both the body and the brain.
Of course, volunteering for and participating in a stewardship work day produces all sorts of additional benefits—in particular, doing something good for the local communities (both the human community that uses the space and the natural community that inhabits it) is rewarding, as is making social connections with the other volunteers and engaging together on a common effort.
Every time I do one, I am reinforced in my desire to do more stewardship workdays, despite my slothful nature.
(The picture at the top is another view of the Cecropia moth that Jackie spotted while we were there.)
Sloth claws are not
Sloth claws are not—as in many other species—essentially long, hard fingernails, but are actually the sloth’s protruding finger bones http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20170428-why-sloths-do-not-get-crusty-eyes-from-all-the-sleeping