Four years of being a Naturalist

Well July 19th is right around the corner. I turn twenty four this year but my naturalist adventure turns 4 this year. Well this chapter anyway is four years old. July 18th was a very special time for me and would help me become a better volunteer and a better nature nerd. It was on a hot summer day and my aunt was finishing up work at her old school where she used to teach. I used to love taking photos out there at the old farm stock tank and the surrounding grasslands of Everman Texas. I had just got done getting a few photos of a Yellow-crowned Night Heron wolfing down a tiny Crayfish. We soon leave to eat at Chick-fil-a I kid you not that is part of this equation. I sat in a booth with my brother and I am showing him the shots and I am amazed about one shot in particular and it is a shot of the bird with the crayfish by the claw. A worker comes up and she tells us that there is a park near Bowman Springs that you otta check out. I was interested and it was a park only three years old at the time. I looked at the Southwest Nature Preserve website and I would find that there was a herp walk on the 18th of July. I asked if I could go and sign up to volunteer. I was unemployed from Six Flags Over Texas due to a kidney issue I have had since I was born; it was only a matter of time until I had to have the issue taken care of. I decided to check out the park and go on this herp walk. I went there and met up with @apcorboy, @janmiller @lynnjhealy and several others. I was kind of dressed like a geek that day wearing my wildlife viewing vest and stuff. I have always been one for the extremes. We went on the hike and I was pretty impressed with the park and decided to sign up to volunteer right on the spot. We came back and I was told of an app to use called iNaturalist. I had not used that particular app before; I used a completely different one that I hardly ever use anymore. It wasn't long until I learned of the Texas Master Naturalist program and the Eco Summit 2015 meeting. I got to check out both things and met @sambiology and @brentano who I would really identify with. I went on a dragonfly walk at Elmer W. Oliver an other place that I would voluteer at and collect a lot of data from with the iNaturalist app. As the months went by I met many others like @elizarose @charley @melindawpajak who I would also talk too and have connections with. I got my chance to become a Texas Master Naturalist in 2016. I sent in my application and got the okay to be part of that class and it would change my life. I soon met @rrichter @troutlily57 @eangler @cindycobb @lulubelle and many other people through this experience. I learned so much and really bonded with you guys over the years. After that and the more volunteering I did I would meet @suz @sammyjames @wildcarrot @kimberlietx @lovebirder @wildcarrot and many others. Out in the field and on this little thing called iNaturalist. Life's journey has brought me closer to a bigger realm; one that I am proud to be part of. I never would have thought I would do that much with citizen science but as fate would have it and the way my dice rolled I would be introduced to you whom I consider friends, mentors, and collaborators. I am hoping for many more wonderful years of discovery and volunteer work as well as good old natural fun. Four years has gone by pretty fast. I may be only three years into the Master Naturalist life but hey I still say the adventure started at this point. I really love this because it has brought me closer to nature than ever before. I enjoy doing the volunteer tasks and making connections with people. I love to go home at the end of each meeting, each outing, or each gathering and tell my family what I have seen and what I have learned. I love having my little tribes. This tribe is the one that really hits home with me. Sure I admit I am a big television and silver screen junkie I am a huge nerd and love my daily dose of science fiction or cartoons or whatever. However there is nothing that can replace nature. I am a naturalist first and a fanboy second. You need a planet before you can have anything else is my motto. I think that getting out in nature is a great way to connect with people and the world around you. I have always loved nature. When I was a boy I always had my nose stuck in a wildlife book or a National Geographic special. I grew up watching Kratt's Creatures, Jack Hanna's Animal Adventures, Zoo Life, Steve Irwin, Merlin Perkin's Mutual of Omaha Wild Kingdom, David Attenburough, Jeff Corwin, Nova, PBS's Nature, Nova Science Now, Walking with Dinosaurs, and tons more stuff like that. I was not all Star Wars and stuff but I had a lot of educational stuff to watch that fascinated me. Not to mention all the zoo and aquarium treks my folks took me too. They wanted me to experience everything I could and it has made me a nerd for nature. They took me on birding trips, hiking trips, caving trips, trips to state and national parks. It has been a whole lifetime affair with me. I was a Doctor Doolittle at the house I grew up in. I had dogs, hermit crabs, fish, hamsters, silkworm moths, it was like my own little nature center. Shoot we even had an Green Iguana and a Hedgehog. It was a zoo in there. I also raised rabbits two of which were prize winning bunnies at my schools Agriscience show. Yeah FFA was a really big part of my high school life. I was always getting myself into something and I was really into it. I was a reporter my senior year and I did so much more. I didn't want to leave high school. With the Master Naturalist group and my other affiliations I am starting to feel the same way I did back in high school with the animals and stuff. With iNaturalist I am out nearly every day trying to get all the stuff I can cram on to my life list. I love this and it has been a four year mission to do as much as I can with iNaturalist. I love this tool and love to connect with the people who use it. I am constantly learning from it and gaining so much knowledge about the organisms I know and the stuff that I don't know. It has been a guide that I use daily. I use it religiously and I am proud to be a citizen scientist. There was not much I could do back when I worked for the amusement park but even though I am still looking for work to support school and the nature volunteer work I am having the time of my life exploring and keeping my feet on the trail. Here is hoping to many more years of exploration and wonder with you my friends. Have a great day and hope that you guys always keep your eyes to the road ahead with open minds and muddy shoes. This is Zachary Chapman signing off.

Publicado por galactic_bug_man galactic_bug_man, 17 de julio de 2018

Observaciones

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Palomilla de Alacena Plodia interpunctella

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Julio 16, 2018 08:47 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Julio 16, 2018 08:48 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Chinches Jumiles Género Euschistus

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Julio 16, 2018 08:47 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Tronadores, Saltapericos Y Cocuyos Familia Elateridae

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Julio 16, 2018 08:48 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Centzontle Norteño Mimus polyglottos

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Julio 16, 2018 08:49 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

Descripción

These guys are always chirping and singing at night. I hear them all the time outside my bedroom window when I am trying to go to sleep. I have never seen one though out that late. I didn't think there were that many nocturnal birds until I started listening to the sounds outside my window. This was one interesting photo I have of any bird at night.

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Julio 16, 2018 08:55 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Hormigas Familia Formicidae

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Julio 16, 2018 08:56 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Julio 16, 2018 08:59 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Escarabajos Y Parientes Orden Coleoptera

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Julio 16, 2018 09:22 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Hormigas Familia Formicidae

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Julio 16, 2018 09:24 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Tronadores, Saltapericos Y Cocuyos Familia Elateridae

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Julio 16, 2018 09:23 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

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Julio 16, 2018 09:24 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

Descripción

Did some mothing at my house tonight and had a bunch of small things come up. I had a few beetles come up and this one really stood out. This one was very interesting and I wish he would have stuck around more. It was a tricky shot to get because I was using the only lights I had which was my dining room light and my kitchen lights. This thing had a red head and weird looking antenna. It was kind of hot and with my mom having watered the backyard's plants it was steamy so a lot of stuff was coming up. @sambiology @kimberlietx @borisb check this out.

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Chicharrita de Alas Cristalinas Homalodisca vitripennis

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Julio 16, 2018 09:26 PM CDT

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Texas, US (Google, OSM)

Comentarios

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Very nice, Zach!

Publicado por lovebirder hace más de 2 años (Marca)
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Glad our paths crossed Zach. Lower back issues have kept me out of the field since the class we shared but I've enjoyed following your post on iNaturalist and love your commentary. Keep up the good work!

Publicado por eangler hace más de 2 años (Marca)
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You are such a passionate naturalist, Zach! I'm happy we share this interest in nature and get to spend time together hunting bugs! Congrats on 4 years!

Publicado por kimberlietx hace más de 2 años (Marca)
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I'm so glad to be in your orbit, Zach! See you in the field!

Publicado por troutlily57 hace más de 2 años (Marca)
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Congrats Zach! I'm so glad that you're a part of the naturalist community in DFW!

Publicado por rrichter hace más de 2 años (Marca)

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