Herpetology: The Creeping Animals

When winter is drawing to a close and the temperatures begin to warm up, life begins to happen before your eyes. The grass begins to grow, the spring migratory birds begin to move in, the days get longer, and the trees bring forth buds… and pollen. Here at Long Acres Ranch, anytime we have students … Read More

Arachnology: Halloween’s Favorite Mascot

  With cooler weather beginning to push into Southeast Texas, people begin to contemplate who or what they will be for Halloween. Ghosts and monsters generally come to mind but also creepy crawly things. Spiders fall under the category of creepy crawly and are often used as props to decorate for Halloween. And that is … Read More

Ecology: The Science of Connection

“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir Kicking off the new year of studies is ecology, the study of the interrelationships between organisms and their environments. In February, the conversation was started with bioecology, and there is still so much … Read More

Lepidopterology: Small Scale Wonders

One of the best parts of spring and summer is watching the butterflies emerge. Their flitting and fluttering and beautifully bright colors signal the beginning of a new season, full of life and adventure. Whatever the species and whatever they’re doing, butterflies always bring a smile to my face – and I know I’m not … Read More

Bioecology: The Science of Connection

Have you ever heard of “six degrees of separation?” It’s an idea that all people on Earth are linked through six or fewer social connections. I don’t know if that is actually the case, but interconnection between people is certainly real. What does this have to do with our science study, you ask? Well, first … Read More

Petrology: Science Rocks!

This month we are rockin’ it as we explore Petrology, the study of rocks. Specifically, petrology is the branch of geology that studies the formation, composition, and classification of rocks. With so many different rocks that there’s no agreed upon number of how many there actually are, there is a plethora of information to unearth … Read More

Pedology: The Dirt on Soil

This month, we are getting our hands dirty as we explore Pedology, the study of soil. Soil, not to be confused with plain Jane “dirt”, is a complex and important component of the natural world. Let’s dig up the dirt on soil to find out what it’s all about. Soil is composed of five main … Read More

Hydrology: In the Know About H2O

Ah, water. Earth’s life blood. Although not alive itself, water is necessary to life for all living things. It composes 71% of the Earth’s surface and up to 60% of an adult human body. We drink it, cook with it, use it to clean our clothes, homes, and bodies, and even swim and play in … Read More

Myrmecology: EnchANTed by Nature

Is there a group of animals that can conjure up the creepy crawlies and visions of ruined picnics like the ant? For most, only one experience with an overlooked ant pile can quickly create a negative impression for a lifetime. However, if we do like an ant and dig a little deeper, we can discover … Read More

The Secret Farmers of Long Acres Ranch – The Leafcutter Ant

Look closely! If you walk through the beautiful woods and thickets at Long Acres Ranch, and don’t slow down and observe the small workings of the world around you, you run the risk of missing out on some truly amazing ecological interactions. One such interaction is between the Leafcutter ant (Atta spp.) and the available … Read More