Gee-Whiz: Ice Ages, Past and Future

By O. E. MacDougal January/February 2016, Backwoods Home Most people don’t know that we’re currently in an ice age and have been for the last 2.58 million years. It’s called the Quaternary Ice Age. Again and...

Gee-Whiz: Sleep

By O.E. MacDougal November/December 2017, Backwoods Home For thousands of years, sleep has been one of life’s great mysteries. As humans, we spend about one-third of our lives sleeping, though as babies we spent about 16...

Gee-Whiz: Trees

By O. E. Macdougal September/October 2015, Backwoods Home We’re told they include some of the oldest and largest living organisms on the planet. But do they? The fact is, only about one percent of a...

Gee-Whiz: Bad Fish, Big Fish

By O.E. MacDougal January/February 2015, Backwoods Home Fish were the very first vertebrates. That is, they were the first animals with backbones, the purpose of which is to sheathe and protect the nerves in the spinal...

Gee-Whiz: Time

By O.E. MacDougal July/August 2016, Backwoods Home Time. We can’t see, feel, hear, smell, or taste it, but we can measure it and we break it up into smaller and smaller increments. We’ll probably never know...

Gee-Whiz: Dinosaurs

By O.E. MacDougal July/August 2014 Backwoods Home Biologists and paleontologists are now pretty certain that birds are part of the dinosaur lineage. Their extinct relatives include the T-Rex and velociraptors. So, dinosaurs are not really extinct,...

Gee-Whiz: Insects

By O. E. MacDougal November/December 2015, Backwoods Home Some 400 million years ago, in the Devonian Period, insects evolved from crustaceans. Since that time, they have been one of the most successful life forms on the...