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Posted on April 20, 2024

​The website iNaturalist is a social network of people sharing biodiversity information to help each other and scientists learn about nature. (Click the hyperlink below to answer the following question.)

QUESTION #1: How many reptile species have been observed in Pend Oreille County?

ANSWER: Seven species of reptiles have been reported in Pend Oreille County as of March 31, 2024. Snakes: Common Garter Snake, Western Terrestrial Garter Snake, Northern Rubber Boa, and North American Racer. Lizards: Western Skink and Northern Alligator Lizard. Turtle: Painted Turtle. The most observed reptile is Painted Turtle (16 sightings), while the least observed are Northern Alligator Lizard (1), North American Racer (1), and Western Skink (2). Fewer sightings may be due to a species secretive behavior, limited habitat, small body size, or absence of human survey effort


Collisions between birds and aircraft have occurred since the birth of aviation. Bird strikes are regular events but aircraft damage and human fatalities are rare. Read this study report The Bird Strike Challenge to learn what is known about aviation safety in North America, Australia, and Europe. (Figure 5 in the report will answer the following question.)

QUESTION #2: From the following choices, what was the most common cause of aircraft accidents with human fatalities during the period 2000-2015?

ANSWER: Within this group, windshear is the leading cause of aircraft fatal accidents, followed by bird strikes, lightning strikes, thunderstorms, and turbulence. Data for the USA shows an average of 2.83 bird strikes occurred per 10,000 aircraft movements (Table 1). Slightly more than 40 percent of all bird strikes occurred before liftoff or after touchdown, and another 30 percent happened 500 feet or less above ground (Figure 2). Approximately 93 percent of bird strikes occurred between April and November, which is the time of spring migration, breeding, and autumn migration by birds (Figure 3).


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