Welcome to Season Two!

After months of interviewing, recording, and editing, we’re ready to launch Season Two. We’ve got stories from all over the world and all sorts of biota, from Shanghai birds to London hedgehogs, from New York terrapins to Antarctic midges.

This season we want to hear more from YOU! If you’re listening to this podcast, we bet you dig urban wildlife. Next time you see some urban wildlife where you are, record a note and send it to us. This could be about the geckos on your walls, the wildflowers growing out of the pavement, the civets in your attic, or the marabou storks that crapped on your car. You can record a note on your phone and send it to us, or you could call us and leave a voicemail at 267-603-3219.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Welcome to Season Two!

Rattlesnakes and Urbanization (Special Listener-Generated Episode)

What’s it like to be a rattlesnake in an urbanizing landscape, keeping to your patch, dodging car tires if you leave? In this special episode we air an interview that listener and wildlife biologist Pete Havlik did with Ecologist/Conservation Biologist Matt Goode of the University of Arizona. We hear about rattlers in the Tucson, Arizona area (including the Tumamoc Hill reserve) and also about Dr. Goode’s work with king cobras (the King Cobra Conservancy) in India as they discuss how we can best get along with wild animals in an urbanizing world.

Also check out our other rattler episodes: Timbers on a Boston Island, and One Man’s Pest is Another’s Gorgeous Rattlesnake.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Rattlesnakes and Urbanization (Special Listener-Generated Episode)

We the Weeds

Zya Levy and Kaitlin Pomerantz of the We the Weeds project join us for a weed walk in the neighborhood. Then we retire back at the Urban Wildlife Podcast studio with invasive species beverages, including a cocktail featuring utopic/dystopic bitters.

(learn about the bitters here: WTWBOOKLETDRINKSMUGWORT)

Epazote rising from a bed of lambs quarters.

Epazote rising from a bed of lambs quarters.

Sow thistle

Sow thistle

broad leaved plantain

broadleaf plantain

Virginia pepperweed

Virginia Pepperweed

Ailanthus

Tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissima)

Kaitlin Pomerantz' tatoo (Brooke Herr)

Artist Brooke Herr’s mugwort inspired tattoo (on Kaitlin Pomerantz’s leg).

Curb-crack purslane

Purslane growing from the edge of the curb.

Poke weed

Poke weed every day.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on We the Weeds

Wildlife Bling: Red Squirrels, Black Rat Snakes, Lunch with Hawks

On this impromptu, patched-together, mini episode, we present recordings in the moment: Mike McGraw, Billy, and Magnolia check out a Philadelphia black rat snake; Billy nerds out over urban short-headed garter snakes in Pittsburgh; and a red-tailed hawk picks up some squirrel takeout for lunch. Also Tony and Billy talk about the red squirrel that visited Tony’s office, Tony recounts a Bird Philly urban raptor walk with Christian Hunold, and Tony gets a promotion.

young black rat snake

Wee black rat snake found by Mike McGraw (his photo via PARS)

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Wildlife Bling: Red Squirrels, Black Rat Snakes, Lunch with Hawks

Cute, Furry, and in Your Roof: Part 2

Urban wildlife is great to look at, but what about when it makes your home its home? Guest host Christian Hunold (dig his photos) joins us as we look at cute omnivorous mesofauna in this episode: opossums, possums, skunks, palm civets. In Part Two we hear from urban skunk researcher Anna Schneider and Singapore urban palm civet researcher Xu Weiting.

Xu Weiting_civet in day

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cute, Furry, and in Your Roof: Part 2

Cute, Furry, and in Your Roof: Part 1

Urban wildlife is great to look at, but what about when it makes your home its home? Guest host Christian Hunold (dig his photos) joins us as we look at cute omnivorous mesofauna in this episode: opossums, possums, skunks, palm civets. In part one of this episode we talk opossums and hear from researcher Jeff Foulkes and nature blogger/listener Ry Beaver about Aussie possums.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cute, Furry, and in Your Roof: Part 1

Skyscraper Bats and Ritzy Coyotes

In this mini episode Dr. Seth Magle of the Urban Wildlife Institute of Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo talks with Billy about the Institute and how they’re remotely monitoring urban wildlife in Chicago and beyond.

(you might remember Dr. Magle from our Fruit Bats, Prairie Dogs, and Sausage Weasels episode)

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Skyscraper Bats and Ritzy Coyotes

Flyover Critters (and a bald eagle death match)

Irish hares dig Belfast’s airport and rare El Segundo blue butterflies persist on dunes protected by the the airplane noise of LAX. Dr. Neil Reid of Queen’s University Belfast talks to us about the hares, and we hear from Dr. Travis Longcore of USC and the Urban Wildlands Group about butterfly conservation. Mike McGraw, podcast buddy, biologist with Applied Ecological Services, and airport wildlife hazard expert, joins us as guest host.

We kick off the episode discussing why Tony was late – retrieving a dead bald eagle that lost a mid-air duel over Philadelphia’s Port Richmond neighborhood.

El Segundo blue butterfly

El Segundo Blue (Travis Longcore)

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Flyover Critters (and a bald eagle death match)

Special Episode: Tony in Australia

Tony doesn’t take it easy on vacation. In December he flew to Australia to bird, herp, and explore. Of course he checked out some urban wildlife while he was down there, and in this episode we listen to his interviews with a Torresian imperial pigeon researcher with PIPwatch in Cairns (lead researcher Dr. Julia Hazel), Dr. John Martin in Sydney (who researchers basically all their urban wildlife) at the Royal Botanic Garden, and with Tony’s herping buddies on an evening excursion on the outskirts of Sydney.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Special Episode: Tony in Australia

Happy World Sparrow Day [Re-post]

[This is a re-post of our World Sparrow Day episode in honor of… World Sparrow Day 2017!!!]

We celebrate World Sparrow Day (March 20th) with a look at Passer domesticus, a bird North American birders love to hate but that is in a mysterious decline in its native Eurasian range.

We hear from Mohammed Dilawar, founder of India’s Nature Forever Society and of World Sparrow Day, about the state of the sparrow in India and the victory of getting it declared the state bird of Delhi.

Tony talks to urban researcher Jessica Burnett about her house sparrow research and how the Unholy Trio might not be so… unholy.

Robin Irrizary, Philadelphia Watershed Coordinator for the TTF Watershed Partnership and avid urban naturalist joins Tony and Billy to talk about sparrows and about how someday his children will be able to carry out all the citizen science projects he never had time to do.

So plug us in, step outside your front door, and raise your binoculars to celebrate the house sparrow.

spwrrow.on.antenna

West Philly House Sparrow across the street from Billy’s house

And here’s that anti-sparrow piece from 1917 that we mentioned.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Happy World Sparrow Day [Re-post]

Wonder Wall Lizards

European wall lizards are spreading, and we’re gonna talk and sing about it. Dr. Russell Burke from Hofstra University tells us about the wall lizards of New York, and Dr. Kenneth Petren of the University of Cincinnati talks about his city’s “Lazarus lizards.” And what wall lizard discussion would be complete without a song? Dig the release of Tony and Matthew Halley’s latest hit, “Wonder Wall Lizard.”

(and if you see a Cincinnati wall lizard, report it here: http://www.uc.edu/lizards/)

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Wonder Wall Lizards