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Arb Notes

Arb Notes: Inventorying arb species

Carleton’s Arb houses a plethora of species. It is difficult — impossible really — to determine all of the species that inhabit the Arb. Many have been observed, but despite intensive searching, many can easily avoid detection. Some species may be difficult to find due to their biological characteristics. For…

Arb Notes: Fifty Shades of Cardinals

It’s winter. It’s cold. It’s freezing your ears off every time you exit the building. The glaring white snow, though ethereal and enchanting, stings your eyes as you carefully tread between sheets of dangerously dark ice.  Mind your steps, but do look around if you ever hear a shrill, metallic…

Arb notes: Cross-country skiing

As a senior at Carleton, it’s hard to believe that my first time ever cross-country skiing in the Arb was just last week. I’m not sure why it took me so long to try it out, especially as someone who loves spending time out in the Arb. Cross-country skiing is…

Arb notes

These days, a cool blanket of snow has come to rest over all of campus, and when the temperatures drop below zero, it’s hard to imagine leaving the complex, much less living out there. How do different Minnesotan fauna survive, and which animals might still be active when you walk…

The dormant giant

Garlic Mustard, or Alliaria petiolata, is native to Europe and usually found from Czechia to Italy. Now the weed can be found in areas such as New Zealand, North Africa and North America. For North America, the introduction was in 1868 with the first reported citing being in Long Island,…

Holes on dead trees and strange wasps

Some insects have the strangest, sci-fi-inspiring characteristics. On some dead trees in the Arb, you can sometimes see small but deep holes on the trunk. The holes can be caused by many insects, among them two kinds of wasps that are particularly intriguing — pigeon horntails (Tremex columba) and giant…

(Very Few) Dangers in the Arb

Violence, bloodshed, disease, horror and death. In the Arb, dangers lurk at every corner, and every day is a new struggle to survive, but not for humans. Unlike Arb residents, we as visitors can just relax and enjoy the Arb without worrying about predation, poison or pathogens. But you may…

Fish and fishing

If you take a walk around the Lyman Lakes or Cannon River these days, you can see many anglers. Indeed, with the nice weather and mosquitoes not out yet, fishing could be the most enjoyable activity in nature around the waters. Fish are pretty abundant in the Lyman Lakes, and…

Spring Warbler migration

Northfield is in full color: blue phlox and false-rue anemone are in bloom, the wild plums are on display and hundreds of brightly-colored tropical birds are finding a temporary home in the Cowling Arboretum.  Warblers are pint-sized songbirds that belong to the family Parulidae. Most are neotropical migrants, traveling every…