Dirk J. Stevenson, SavannahNow

Dirk J. Stevenson


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Past articles by Dirk:

NATURAL GEORGIA: Georgia river user’s guide to bring life to history, habitats, waterways

The Georgia River Network, in partnership with the University of Georgia Press, is creating a series of recreational guides to Georgia’s rivers, → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Surveying Gopher Tortoises at Ceylon Wildlife Management Area

The Eastern Wood Pewee is a species of flycatcher that sallies from its perch to catch insects on the wing. Though the bird lacks color (it’s brown- → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Ceylon newest wildlife management area

Some great news is echoing through the conservation community A precious landscape, a true jewel, has been added to the list of protected lands in Georgia. → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Non-native amphibians, reptiles here to stay

From a live oak hammock on St. Simon’s Island came the faintest tinkling, as if a tiny fairy were tweaking the strings of a miniscule harp. The → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Appreciating challenges of swamp fish

Not long after you pass the road to Possum Point, just east of the small community of Cox, in McIntosh County, you will come to a good place to meet the → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Pondering a botanical enigma of the lost Franklinia

In September 1765, Quaker botanists John Bartram and his son William, on a royal plant collecting expedition in the South, traveled an obscure road toward → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Finding new colonies of a rare moth

This is a story about a caterpillar and a liana.First, some history.During the formative section of my youth, I started visiting swamps in earnest. With → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Local Biologist shares experience with the now extinct Bachman’s Warbler

“In 1971 I was living in Key West, Florida, a naturalist’s paradise. I had been stationed there while serving in the U.S. Navy and fell in love with the tropical habitats. On Oct. 6, 1971, a low country swamp loving bird came to visit me. I had the rare, and evidently not to be repeated pleasure, of watching a large number of migrating warbler species from my bedroom window — one of which was a… → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: A spring walk at Holbrook Pond refeshes the soul

Craving beauty and inspiration, I seek nature. And, goodness, how I am rewarded.First, I safely package in the backseat of our motorized conveyance our → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Learn about the harlequin coral snake

Three different species of snakes, colored red, yellow (or white) and black, are native to the Savannah region and nearby portions of the Coastal Plain of → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Admiring relic pines inspires awe

My naturalist buddy visiting from Virginia hollers, “My goodness!” accompanied by extended “oohs” and “ahhs.” Despite an early morning temperature hovering around 35 degrees F, he jumps from the truck and runs, smiling, to embrace one of the gentle giants. Excited, he grabs a large tape measure − to get to know his new friends better. The new friends are a group of old-growth Longleaf Pines… → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Chasing winter salamanders finds healthy ecosystem

Wet winters are a boom for our local amphibians. Winter is the breeding season for many of our salamanders.Venture to bottomland forests fringing our rivers, roll some logs, and you could meet strikingly colorful salamanders − like the marbled salamander and the spotted salamander, both members of the Family Ambystomatidae (the mole salamanders).Hunting salamanders along the Savannah River, I… → Read More

NATURAL GEORGIA: Looking for Georgia’s largest freshwater turtle

Wading a remote section of Warrior Creek in southern Georgia, I knocked my shin then slammed my big toe hard on a cypress knee. Then, I found myself quagmired in a muddy soup that oozed and spoke as I struggled to free myself. It was 96 degrees at 4 p.m., and deer flies were nibbling about my mustache.I said to my field associate Nick, “I think I am done. Do we really want to toss a trap… → Read More

Natural Georgia: Find me road-cruising for rare snakes on Fort Stewart

Like the Liam Neeson action movie character, herpetologist Nick Schiltz has a very special set of skills. I recently joined Schiltz to survey for snakes → Read More

Natural Georgia: Revisiting Altamaha River, solving a mystery

In my column that ran on Oct. 28, I traveled to Georgia’s Little Amazon, the Altamaha River. For this article, I revisit the great stream. On a → Read More

Natural Georgia: Wading a great river reveals drought victims, mystery poles

Early morning. From a promontory high above the Altamaha River I look upstream. On a very large sand bar, a quarter mile distant, I see a child racing → Read More

Natural Georgia: Let’s save an endangered beetle that exhibits parental care

Bring out your dead. For so many scavengers, fresh corpses and carcasses bring new life.A genuinely fascinating group of beetles that rely on carrion are → Read More

Natural Georgia: Explore the wilderness of the Montana Rockies

Grizzly bears and prairie rattlesnakes. Golden eagles and moose. I just spent my week-long summer vacation exploring the vast wilderness of the Absaroka → Read More

Natural Georgia: Learning from a lifelong swamper

Speaking with Alphin Griffis of Fargo a few weeks ago was a genuine treat. Griffis grew up, and still lives, on the west side of the Okefenokee Swamp.He → Read More

Natural Georgia: Life abounds in bald cypress grove forests

In my July 22 column, I described a magnificent bald cypress forest along Miller Lake, on the north side of our Altamaha River at the Long-McIntosh county → Read More