nature | KNKX

nature

Bellamy Pailthorp / KNKX

Puget Sound at low tide is a joy well known to many in the region. It’s a formative experience for many children here, overturning rocks to see all the tiny crabs and sea stars that live amidst colorful seaweed, kelp and barnacles.

But few people are as versed in the lesser-known critters that live in the tidal zone as Seattle naturalist Kelly Brenner. She specializes in anything without a backbone. Brenner is the co-founder of an online event called #Invertefest, which challenges anyone who wants to take part to find and help document the lesser-known or less-celebrated creatures in our midst. She also wrote a recent field guide to Seattle, which includes chapters on marine life.  

We waded into the saltwater together during a recent low tide at Constellation Beach, near Alki, so she could show me around — and introduce me to some of her favorite invertebrates.

In this 2014 photo, a correctional officer directs an offender through a gate at the Washington Corrections Center For Women in Gig Harbor, Washington.
Elaine Thompson / The Associated Press

The healing power of nature is well established. People who garden, take frequent hikes or regularly play with a dog or cat experience the benefits firsthand. Time spent with nature is known to improve mental health, increase physical health and reduce stress.

A professor of social work and criminal justice at the University of Washington Tacoma wants to see that knowledge put to work in state prisons, to help them get better results.  

John Grade

A storefront in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood has been the site of an ever-evolving sculpture, of a tree turned on its side. About a year ago, the site became a hub for a new kind of collaboration with one of the city’s most productive public artists.

Sculptor John Grade and his supporters at the Mad Art Gallery invited hundreds of people in, to help assemble Middle Fork. It’s now a 40-foot long model of a Western Hemlock, suspended inside a large gallery space that’s just down the block from a Tesla Motors showroom and across from the Seattle offices of Microsoft.

National Geographic last week announced the winners in its annual photo contest. According to the contest website, they received more than 22,000 entries from amateur and professional photographers around the world.

Here's a selection of the winning images, including editors' picks, viewers' choice and honorable mentions. You can see the rest on their website.

Dunechaser / Flickr

This we talk about the weather, but as usual, don't do anything about it ... except offer some favorite sayings for your amusement, starting with the classic, definitive bad opening line of all time:

It was a dark and stormy night.
– Edward Bulwer-Lytton