Wildlife

A government agency has moved to protect thousands of square miles of ocean bottom habitat – including areas off the Virginia coast – from damage by commercial fishing operations.....and a thriving elk population in southwest Virginia has created complications for state wildlife managers.  Those have been among the most read stories over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project's VaNews link on vpap.org.

You’ve probably seen it in your garden, along roadways, just about everywhere: Garlic Mustard.  It’s an invasive plant that stealthily out-competes native species, threatening the diversity of forests in many parts of the country. But what if there were a recipe to change that?

They don’t call it garlic mustard for nothing. Rachel Collins is Associate Professor of Biology at Roanoke College. 

“The chemical that it’s making that smells like garlic is one of these herbivore defense chemicals like basil and all the other yummy flavors in bail and mint.”

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Annually for about 13 years, Virginia—like many other states—has been losing about 30% of its honey bee population to a host of problems.  

Some might think that there’s no need to worry.  But aside from the delicious honey they produce, bees are a major contributor to the production of Virginia agriculture, the state's top commodity.

Kill the bees, kill the economy—not to mention furthering the slow breakdown of the ecosystem. So what's leading to the decline? Virginia Tech entomologist Dr. Troy Anderson says a lot of factors are responsible.

The Wildlife Center of Virginia is one-of-a-kind,  a privately funded medical facility for injured animals from across the Commonwealth. 

To make ends meet, the Waynesboro Center will host a fundraiser and auction featuring some surprising items.

Buyers will have about 150 items and opportunities to choose from during Saturday’s gala and auction at Staunton’s Stonewall Jackson Hotel.  There’s a South African photo safari, a behind-the-scenes day at the Wildlife Center of Virginia or a work of art from the Daily Show.

Frog Watching

Aug 25, 2014
Photo by Nick Scobel

If you’re interested in birds, you’ve probably heard of the Christmas bird count.  On December 25th, volunteers head out to see what feathered friends are in their area and report to a national data bank. 

You may not know that a similar enterprise is underway for frogs.  In fact, the North American Amphibian Monitoring Project is looking for help here in Virginia.

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