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About the Backyard Concept
One of the objectives at this website is an attempt to demonstrate that, in many rural (or even suburban) locations, the backyard entomologist can (potentially) still uncover much that is 'new' or previously unknown/unpublished in the vast field of entomology....Ideal locations for such investigations will always include close proximity to the native flora of a district and the less disturbed or altered the habitat is, the better! Lacking that, one can create a 'butterfly (or moth!) garden' by means of selected plantings that attempt to re-introduce some of the plants that were once native to the district, before the 'developers' arrived and 'improved' (denuded and flattened) everything, rendering that American sacred cow, 'Progress'....
As your native plant garden grows and matures, more and more interesting insects and other arthropods will begin to appear and take up residence and birds will follow. Then, the studies can begin (right outside your door)!....All that will be required will be sharp eyes, a good notebook, the best camera you can afford, and (most important of all) an inclination to slow down and really notice what's going on in the garden! And then, invest the extra effort to document and record what you are learning, so that it can (eventually) be communicated to others via the written word, and/or by sketches, drawings, or photographs, etc.....It is NOT necessary to travel hundreds (or thousands) of miles to learn something interesting or NEW in the diverse and uncrowded field of entomology.... Start with your own BACKYARD!....You may never run out of things to investigate the more so if your interests and curiosity extend beyond merely one order of insects.
For REAL 'backyard-inspiration', delve into the extensive writings of J. Henri Fabre (France) and/or H.D. Thoreau (New England). Two observations from Thoreau draw attention to this approach [The bracketed words are mine.]:
"It takes a man [or woman!] of genius to travel in his own country, in his native village, to make any progress between his door and his [garden] gate!" Journal, 6 AUG. 1851
"The discoveries which we make abroad are special and particular; those which we make at home are general and significant. The further off, the nearer the surface. The nearer home, the deeper." Journal, 7 SEP. 1851
SO, WHY NOT DIG IN and QUIT FLITTING ABOUT?? (This approach should garner even greater appeal as the price of gasoline climbs ever higher!)....
Growing Up Wild in Beverly Hills!
EARLY DAYS on OAK PASS Rd. (1937-1945) and HOW the ROAD GOT ITS NAME
- (A) Botanical Highlights
-- Historical Remarks on Oaks
-- EARLY EVOLUTIONARY STAGES of the "SMOG-DENIAL SYNDROME"!
-- OAK PASS NATIVE PLANTS TODAY (??)
-- Echos From the Past!
-- A Bit of SUMMERTIME FOGBANK-BOTANY
- (B) LOCAL BUTTERFLY HIGHLIGHTS
- (C) LOCAL BIRDS REMEMBERED
- (D) LOCAL MAMMALS REMEMBERED
- (E) REPTILES & AMPHIBIANS REMEMBERED
DESSERT (Purely for Amusement!)
THE HONEY-SNOB'S CORNER
A five-year study (1953-1957) documenting the occurrence of 283 macro-moth species on one acre of woodland habitat at 9601 Oak Pass Rd., 5 road-miles north of Sunset Blvd., Beverly Hills (a mixture of undisturbed Southern Oak Woodland / Chaparral / Coastal Sage Scrub habitat, at 1100 ft. elevation).
WHAT TO EXPECT AT THIS CALIFORNIA SITE
ABOUT THE BACKYARD CONCEPT
BACKGROUND & INTRODUCTION
About the Moth Studies at 9601 Oak Pass Road
BEATING or SWEEPING for LARVAE - A MOST PRODUCTIVE COLLECTING TECHNIQUE
The OLD BEVERLY HILLS (OAK PASS ROAD) MOTH STUDY COMPARED WITH THREE OTHER (MORE RECENT) SURVEYS IN COASTAL SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
OBSERVED DIFFERENCES IN THE MACRO-MOTH FAUNAS OF THE ABOVE THREE OTHER SURVEYED COASTAL CALIFORNIAN LOCALITIES
HISTORICAL PHOTOS and A PLEA for FUTURE STUDIES in the SAME REGION
FRANK SALA'S CORNER
FRANK HOVORE'S CORNER
1C - HABITAT PHOTOS (1957-1964)
Copyright ©2005-2011 Noel McFarland. All Rights Reserved.