Wildlife: Invertebrates, Reptiles, Amphibians

To some, species such as nudibranchs, sweat bees, tarantulas, and red-legged frogs are lumped into the great wide world of creepy-crawlies. But these underfoot and underwater animals can be surprisingly interesting, albeit sometimes obscure. The sense of wonder and curiosity that these species spark is a reminder of wildlife’s inherent value, no matter the size or number of legs.

Rains Lure California Newts Home to Mate (Video)

March 05, 2014 by Alison Hawkes

The rains have sent a strong signal to California newts — time to mate. A graceful, underwater mating dance is the prelude to this season's replenishment of the species. (VIDEO)


The Beauty and the Cheeseweed, a San Francisco Butterfly Love Story

February 28, 2014 by Eric Simons

Of the 35 breeding butterfly species in San Francisco, 25 have now found a non-native host plant they can work with. In an area this urban, undesirable weeds growing in sidewalk cracks have become vital to the life of butterflies.

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What’s Small, Ladybug-Like, and Golden All Over?

February 27, 2014 by Rachel Diaz-Bastin

A few years ago a Bay Nature reader spotted something golden and shiny on her carpet. Suspecting it was a piece of jewelry she picked it up, only to find it was alive! What kind of beetle is golden, metallic and looks like a ladybug?


Western Monarch Population Hanging On

February 18, 2014 by Alessandra Bergamin

Monarch butterfly populations in California’s coastal overwintering sites showed a slight -- and surprising -- rebound in 2013 after more than a decade of dwindling numbers.


Battle of the Ants at Jasper Ridge

January 13, 2014 by Brendan Buhler

One of the keys to their success is that Argentine ants are much less aggressive toward other Argentine ants than they are toward other species. They share information, resources, and trails; they are so cooperative with each other they appear to function as a single colony, with many queens and many nests.

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Fire-chasing Beetles Make an Appearance

January 08, 2014 by Emily Moskal

For decades, charcoal beetles were known as an irritant to firefighters and football fans but now, scientists understand the habits of these fire-chasers.


2014 Local Hero Award Winner for Environmental Education

January 02, 2014 by Bay Nature Staff

>> Liam was recently interviewed on KQED-FM’s Forum about his life in lepidoptery (2/7/14). LISTEN A trained stage actor (who ...

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A Child’s Book of Habitat

January 02, 2014 by Beth Slatkin

Wildlife biologist and environmental science writer (and former Bay Nature contributing editor) Matthew Bettelheim temporarily switched out of his academic ...


Learned Lepidopterist

December 20, 2013 by Rick Bacigalupi

San Francisco’s Liam O’Brien shares his wealth of knowledge all about Bay Area butterflies. Produced by Rick Bacigalupi. ...

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Where are all the Western Toads?

December 12, 2013 by Alessandra Bergamin

I used to have a multitude of western toads on my ranch in Nicasio but I no longer see them. I was wondering what happened to all the toads?