Pliny 2.0

Natural History Encyclopedia 2.0

Banana Slugs

Banana slugs mating yin-yang style. Photo by Andy Goryachev/Wikipedia

The skin-breathing, eyeball-waving, penis-gnawing denizens of the redwood forest.

Monarch Butterflies

Monarch butterflies take several generations to complete a migration cycle. Photo by Clinton and Charles Robertson via Wikimedia Commons.

The monarchs are coming! The monarchs are coming!


A bobcat stares at a photographer in Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Photo by Len Blumin/Creative Commons.

The remarkable wild feline that inspired a California ban on trapping near parks

Western Side-Blotched Lizard

Coat of many colors. The color of the male's sides and throat (in this case orange) correlates to a particular breeding strategy.  Photo by Gary Nafis.

Like Dustin Hoffman in 'Tootsie,' some males of this species infiltrate female society by imitating the ladies—then seduce from within the girlie ranks.

Peregrine Falcon

Once endangered, peregrine falcons now inhabit most of the world's continents. Photo by Aviceda/Creative Commons.

How the world's fastest animal hunts.

Poison Oak

A classic specimen showing the three soft-lobed leaves and characteristic gleam of poison oak. Photo by Franco Folini/Creative Commons.

If this photo doesn't give you the heebie-jeebies, read this article.

Mountain Lion

Mountain lions—also called pumas, panthers, cougars and catamounts—can weigh over 200 pounds. Photo by Tony Hisgett / Creative Commons.

The mysterious ways of the Santa Cruz Mountains' apex predator.

Great White Shark

It does inspire respect.  Photo by Terry Goss/Creative Commons.

Great whites are in Monterey Bay til March. You might as well understand what you're scared of!

Chestnut-Backed Chickadee

A fine example of a chestnut-backed chickadee. Photo by Minette Layne/Creative Commons.

In the Great Chickadee Treaty divvying up North America, this chipper bird got the prize of the West Coast.

California Newt

Easy, tiger! A California newt in a defensive posture. Photo by Gary Nafis.

California’s state mammal can knock you on your fanny and its flower glows a vibrant orange. Taricha torosa, the unofficial state amphibian, does both, with poisonous skin as lethal as a grizzly bear’s strike and a belly as colorful as a poppy's petals.