Indian pipe is a ghostly, fleshy, white-stemmed wraith with a nodding white flower at the tip, poking its way up through the duff of the forest floor. It looks like nothing else in the forest and like nothing in your garden. Its life story illustrates the intricate web of life that exists in the forest.
The Peregrine Falcon W/Z is part of a large, ongoing raptor (bird of prey) monitoring effort being conducted on the southwest coast of the Olympic Peninsula of Washington by a dedicated non-profit group called Coastal Raptors, based in Hoquiam. Here is how we got to meet him.
When we walk through a forest, we are surrounded by trees growing up toward the sky. . . Most are primarily straight. . . Some are twisted in complex ways, but even these grow mostly upward from the surface of the soil. What mechanisms generate the upward growth that is so characteristic of most trees, and indeed the great majority of all land plants?
You can specify the differences among various tree species, but if you focus on properties that they share, rather than on properties that distinguish them, you quickly realize that vertical growth characterizes the vast majority of trees, and indeed the vast majority of all plants. How does upward growth come about?
Though flowers affect us deeply, they are the products of evolution and play their own role in the great web of life. This role is independent of human feelings. Flowers are what they are. . . It seems only right that we should examine them closely on their own terms.