I keep hearing about the cicadas that are coming out of the ground after 17-years. What are they and will we have them here? Answered by Ron Patterson – University of Idaho Extension, Bonneville County The famous chattering bugs. If you didn’t know better, you would think you are getting near a rattlesnake. We’re talking…

If White-tailed deer are more adaptable and numbers are flourishing in Idaho, do biologists fear the extinction of mule deer in Idaho? Also, do White-tail and Mule deer ever crossbreed?

Question Asked by Mrs. Kress’ Class at Tigert Middle School in Soda Springs Question Answered by Paul Atwood Senior Wildlife Researcher for Idaho Dept. of Fish & Game Mule deer are better adapted to live in dry, open areas and white-tailed deer are better living in forests that get more rain. Idaho is a large…

How long are cheatgrass seeds viable?

Question answered by Kristin Kaiser, Plant Ecologist INL ESER Program Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.) is a highly invasive introduced winter annual. It has several common names like downy brome, June grass, and others that vary within cultural regions. The plant’s scientific name roughly translates to “brome of the roofs” which references Europeans who used it…

Why don’t all clouds rain?

There is always moisture in the air in either a water vapor or liquid form. This moisture is invisible in the water vapor form. Moisture in the air becomes visible in the liquid form. Question Asked by student at Preston Jr. High Answered by Travis Wyatt Meteorologist National Weather Service Clouds form when air rises…

I’m a wildlife photographer interested in learning the best time of spring to have an opportunity to find badger cubs?

Answered by Jamie Utz – Wildlife Diversity Biologist – Idaho Dept. of Fish & Game Southwest Region Thanks to a special feature of reproductive biology, seasonal patterns of torpor, and certain behavioral tendencies of American badgers (Taxidea taxus), this is tricky question to answer. Badgers mate in the late summer or early fall. But once…

I saw that before each snowstorm this winter they sprayed something on the roads to prevent freezing. What is it and how does it affect our water after it mixes with snow and runs off?

Answered by Flint Hall Hydrologist for DEQ Dept. of Environmental Quality Deicers are applied to road surfaces, sidewalks, and parking lots for winter-time safety. Deicers work by reducing the freezing-point of water thereby melting ice, or, when sprayed on the road as a liquid (brine) before a snow storm, preventing ice from forming at all.…