Wander Lord

Interesting on art, nature, people, history

Category Archive: Nature

Maple – Spectacular Leaves and Tasty Syrup

Maple – Spectacular Leaves and Tasty Syrup

Maple – Spectacular Leaves and Tasty Syrup

Maples are trees and shrubs that are often planted in parks and along city streets. Their leaves form a thick dome and in autumn they turn spectacular shades of yellow, orange, and scarlet.
There are about 200 different species of maple. They grow throughout much of North America, Europe, and northeastern Asia. They can grow to be more than 40 meters tall. The leaves usually have several fingerlike sections called lobes. Flowers appear in early spring. The fruit of maple trees is a hard pebble-sized structure with a pair of thin wings.
Sugar maples have sweet sap that is used to make maple syrup. These trees grow in Canada and the United States. People collect the sap in late winter or early spring. Sugar maples do not produce sap until they are about 40 years old! Sugar maple is the national tree of Canada, and a stylized leaf of this species is featured prominently on the Canadian flag.
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Barracuda – fierce fish

Barracuda - fierce fish

Barracuda – fierce fish

Barracuda is one of the fiercest fish in tropical waters. They circle around groups of smaller fish until the fish huddle together in fear. The barracudas then dive in and slash the fish with their teeth. The great barracuda sometimes even attacks human swimmers.
Barracudas live in warmer parts of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, including the Caribbean Sea. There are about 20 species and some of them can be poisonous.
It is a long, cylindrical, silvery fish. Their silver coloring and elongated bodies make them difficult for prey to detect. Barracudas have long mouths filled with large, knifelike teeth. They have two fins on the back and small scales on the body. These fish are average about 1 meter in length. The great barracuda can reach a length of 2 meters and weighs more than 50 kg, and it is an aggressive fearsome predator of other fish. The great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) can change color to match its background environment. Specifically, it is found in the west Atlantic from Brazil to New England and in the Gulf of Mexico.
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Amazon River – Rainforest River

Amazon River - Rainforest River

Amazon River – Rainforest River

The Amazon is the mightiest river in South America. It carries more water than any other river. It is about 4,000 miles (6,400 kilometers) long.
Amazon Rainforests cover only about 6% of the Earth’s surface and they are also home to a vast number of plant and animal species.
There are so many plants, animals, birds, and insects there that no one has been able to list them all! Some of them exist nowhere else in the world.
In 1541, a Spanish soldier named Orellana sailed down the river. He had to fight many women soldiers who lived by the river. It made him think of the Amazons, who were the mighty women soldiers of Greek mythology. So he called the river “Amazon.”
People destroy the Amazon rainforest. Today, the rain forests are destroyed at the speed 1.5 acres per second. Deforestation threatens the existence of the Amazon River. Plants and animals are disappearing.
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Interesting facts about sparrows

Interesting facts about sparrows

Interesting facts about sparrows

Sparrows are small, brownish or grayish songbirds. They are among the best-known birds in the world. They live in cities, farms, grasslands, woodlands, and marshes. These birds eat mostly seeds and insects.
The house sparrow is about 12 to 15 centimeters long. The song sparrow is about the same size or slightly larger.
There are two main groups of sparrows: Old World sparrows and New World sparrows. Old World sparrows come from Europe, Asia, and Africa. New World sparrows are found in North America and South America.
They are highly territorial during their breeding season, proclaiming their territory by singing, which in many species is quite loud, rich, and musical.
Some species of sparrows are fairly easy to keep in captivity, and they are kept as pet cagebirds.
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Cricket – The Wing-Singers

Cricket - The Wing-Singers

Cricket – The Wing-Singers

Crickets are jumping insects, related to grasshoppers. Although they have wings, most are not able to fly. There are about 2,400 species of cricket. Crickets are found throughout the world except for the polar regions. They live in fields, trees, and bushes. Crickets are 3 to 50 millimeters long. They are usually brown, black, or green. Most crickets have two pairs of wings which help them jump. Crickets also have long, thin antennas that they use to smell and touch. A cricket has six legs with tiny claws that help it run along on a tree limb or ceiling. Crickets have specialized hearing organs on their front legs, by which they are able to detect vibrations.
These insects are active during the day and night, depending on the species. They eat mostly plants, but some crickets eat only tiny insects.
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Wonderful Corals and Coral reefs

Wonderful Corals and Coral reefs

Wonderful Corals and Coral reefs

Coral reefs represent some of the oldest and most complex communities of plants and animals on Earth. The primary structure of a coral reef is a calcareous skeleton formed by marine invertebrate organisms known as cnidarians, which are relatives of sea anemones.
There are essentially three types of coral reefs – fringing reefs, barrier reefs, and atolls. Fringing reefs form borders along the shoreline. Barrier reefs also parallel the shoreline but are found further offshore and are separated from the coast by a lagoon. The atoll is typically a ring-shaped reef.
About 33% of all of the fishes of the world live and depend on coral reefs. Within the reef, there are hiding places for fish and other marine organisms.
The largest coral reef in the world is the Great Barrier Reef near Australia. It is more than 1,250 miles long.
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Birch – symbol of Russia

Birch – symbol of Russia

Birch – symbol of Russia

Birches have long been known for their beautiful bark. People use birch wood to make furniture, flooring, and plywood.
Birch trees are found in the northern half of the world. They grow in areas with cool to cold weather.
There are about 170 species of birch worldwide. They have narrow trunks and their bark is often white with black lines. Its leaves are usually bright green and they turn golden yellow in the fall. Birch flowers are called catkins. Each catkin bears flowers of only one sex but male and female catkins occur on the same plant. The fruit is a one-seeded nut which is often winged.
In Russia, birch switches are traditionally used to beat one’s skin during sauna baths.
The sap of birches is sweet and can be collected and condensed into syrup.
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