Earth Notes

The Colorado Plateau is one of North America’s human and environmental treasures. Ancient cultures have called this land of sun-baked deserts and lush mountain landscapes home for centuries. Earth Notes, KNAU’s weekly environmental series, explores the Plateau by telling stories of the intricate relationships between environmental issues and our daily lives.

Rooted in science and wrapped in human interest, the two minute long segments encourage listeners to think of themselves as part of the solution to environmental problems. Upbeat and informative, the program tries to foster hope and dampen despair about the environment, and motivate listeners to become more conscious and informed stewards of the Colorado Plateau.

Michael Collier

Every winter, what sounds like a pack of baying hounds fills the air at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. It’s not dogs, though, but birds—snow geese by the thousands, making loud, nasal, single-syllable honks.


Earth Notes: Drones in the Woods

Dec 28, 2016
Michele James

An exciting tool is providing a new way to better determine the effectiveness of restoration projects in northern Arizona forests. 


Lowell Observatory

If you look toward the eastern horizon just before dawn on a clear moonless night, you should see a ghostly white glow shining up through the dark sky.  This is zodiacal light, caused when passing comets and colliding asteroids shed space dust. That dust scatters sunlight upwards well before sunrise.


Brocken Imaglory

Southwest deserts are a good place to see atmospheric phenomena called mirages. They occur where distinct layers of warm and cooler air form. When hot air is trapped below cooler air, entering light is inverted and bent upwards – forming an inferior mirage below the real object.


Louis Vest

The iconic formation called Ship Rock sails like a stately clipper ship 1,700 feet above the surrounding desert of northwest New Mexico.  It’s the craggy remnant of a volcanic explosion that occurred about 30 million years ago, with long dikes extending from its base.


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