Next time you pass a mature ponderosa pine, notice its broad plates of orange-red bark etched with black crevices. That thick, puzzle-shaped bark helps the tree survive moderate forest fires by protecting the inside of the trunk from overheating; severe fires though can kill even the thickest-barked trees.
Scientists have noticed a sharp population decline in monarch butterflies migrating between Mexico and Canada. Flagstaff entomologist Mike Wagner wants to know if growing more milkweed will boost their numbers. Milkweed is a pollinator plant for many insects and the only plant on which monarchs will lay their eggs.
On a cloudy, windy day in June 1887, Edgar Mearns climbed Mount Humphreys, Arizona's highest peak. Taking shelter behind a pile of stones, he was joined by a broad-tailed hummingbird—a fitting companion for one of America's greatest ornithologists.
A certain type of sheep that had almost slipped from memory is making a comeback in New Mexico. Dahl sheep are believed to have been raised by Spanish settlers about four centuries ago, but the breed was replaced over time by more common ones.
Our homes and buildings use a lot of energy. Up to 40 percent of energy bills and carbon dioxide emissions are tied to private homes and commercial buildings. Experts say nearly one-third of this money and energy use is wasted, because many structures were built before modern materials and standards were around.