Cultivate Backyard Biodiversity

Many people view the built environment and the natural world as two separate entities, but they coexist—all urban and developed areas are also a part of their ecosystems! Making a few simple enhancements around our homes and neighborhoods can greatly increase an urban area’s potential to serve as excellent habitat, especially for pollinators and birds….

Pop the champagne, it’s time for RAIN!

Herpetofauna awaken with the rainy season An Arizona summer is dry. It’s hot. There’s not a drop of moisture in the air. Life is seemingly absent at first glance as humans are indoors while the wildlife is underground or minimally active in cool shady hideouts. The desert is one of the harshest climates to live in,…

It’s World Bee Day. Time for Bee Bingo!

Celebrate World Bee Day (May 20) with a fun game of Bee Bingo! Get outside and learn about the native bees and native plants of the Sonoran Desert and win prizes!

Charismatic Cacti Giants

We like big cacti and we cannot lie! The saguaro cactus occupies an undeniable place of prestige among the people in this region, no doubt due to its impressive size, charming shapes, and abundant distribution within its range (not to mention its extensive reproduction in art, film, and pop culture). We totally get it. We…

Desert Biota in a Changing Climate

Katie Predick, Conservation Research and Education Department Earth Day is a time to celebrate the fascinating, biodiverse, resilient nature all around us. And while it’s essential to appreciate and celebrate the unique nature of the Sonoran Desert and beyond, every Earth Day that passes without significant climate or environmental action brings us closer to the…

Desert Museum Science: Knowledge from Nature for People

A Day in the Life of Desert Museum Science Victoria, an undergraduate at the University of Arizona, checks the lesions on her grass samples every day.  She’s testing the selectivity of a natural herbicide for invasive buffelgrass. Buzz, a retired entomologist and Museum volunteer, spends several hours each week staring down a microscope, looking at…

Finding Paths in the Mountains

An Earth Camp Experience By Alana Huffmon, Educator and Earth Camp staff Earth Camp is a unique experience that connects high-school students in Tucson with hands-on stewardship and restoration experiences in the Coronado National Forest. Earth Camp brings STEAM skills to life as students experience three days in the Santa Catalina Mountains working, learning, and laughing…

Save a Saguaro! Tucson Community Fights Buffelgrass

After University of Arizona Journalism student Hannah Cree attended the Save Our Saguaros Month Kickoff event to investigate the Tucson community’s efforts against the invasive species buffelgrass, we invited her to share the resulting story here on the Desert Diaries blog. Thank you to Hannah! By Hannah Cree with photos by Desert Museum staff It’s…

Sharing is Caring in the Sonoran Desert  

By Catherine Bartlett, Education Program Manager  What do limp lizards, a bundle of bats, and fresh fecal samples have in common? Love. Well, maybe not love exactly but each can certainly be seen as an act of generosity in the animal world. Of the five love languages (words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, acts of service, receiving gifts) animals exhibit each, in some…

What Is Conservation Really About?

By Michelle Nijhuis, author of Beloved Beasts: Fighting for Life in an Age of Extinction Join Michelle at the Desert Museum on Saturday, November 13, from 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. for a brief reading from Beloved Beasts, a lively discussion with renowned field ecologist and conservationist Harry Greene, and a book signing. Books will be available…