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Laura Tangley is a senior editor for National Wildlife magazine and the editor of the Birds & Birding and Wildlife Gardening sections of She also manages NWF's Certified Wildlife Habitat Facebook page. Based in Washington, DC, Laura is an avid traveler, birder and wildlife gardener.
Carolina Chickadee by Doug Tallamy

Chickadees Show Why Birds Need Native Trees

4/28/2015 // By Laura Tangley

This year, more than ever, I had been looking forward to songbird-nesting season. The reason? Last spring, my Washington, D.C., yard became one of more than 100 study sites in a three-year research project to investigate how nonnative trees in …

Monarchs by Mariam Ohanjanyan

Western Monarchs: Why 1 Percent Matters

4/3/2015 // By Laura Tangley

A sunny, picture-perfect day on the California coast in late February turned even better when I arrived at a tiny sanctuary in Pacific Grove and found the air filled with butterflies—scores of bright, orange-and-black monarchs fluttering among the branches of fragrant …

Northern Cardinals by Laura Hedgecockk

Tips for Winter Bird Feeding

1/7/2015 // By Laura Tangley

As temperatures drop across much of the country, it’s time to put more thought into what your backyard birds are eating. Providing high-quality food during winter not only entices more birds to visit your yard, it also may help them …

An American robin visits a heated birdbath during a snowstorm in Smithtown, New York.  Photo donated by National Wildlife Photo Contest entrant Elaine Davis.

Don’t Forget Water for Birds in the Winter!

12/3/2014 // By Laura Tangley

Throughout the hot summer months, backyard birders like me faithfully supply all the fresh water our feathered friends need for drinking, bathing or simply cooling off. By this time of year, however, most of us have covered up or put …

Monarch Butterfly by Bernadette Banville

Get Ready For Monarch Migration

8/1/2014 // By Laura Tangley

If you spot monarch butterflies in your yard this month, there’s a good chance the eggs these insects are laying now will develop into the generation of adults that have made the monarch such an iconic species. Beginning in late …

Hummingbird moth by Roger Lee

Photo Gallery: Seven Surprising Pollinators

6/17/2014 // By Laura Tangley

We’re all familiar with the beleaguered honey bees and beautiful butterflies that pollinate our crops and wildflowers. But pollinating animal species comprise a diversity of wild creatures, from birds and bats to moths, beetles, flies and even the odd land …

Monarch butterfly by Lois Settlemeyer

From Presidents to Wildlife Gardeners, Monarch Butterflies Need All the Help They Can Get

5/21/2014 // By Laura Tangley

It’s not often, if ever, that the White House convenes a meeting on the topic of insects. But that’s just what happened three weeks ago when John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, invited …

Bumble Bee by Julie Chen

5 Facts About Bumble Bees—and How To Help Them

4/26/2014 // By Laura Tangley

If asked to name a key pollinator in the United States, you’re likely to think first of the honey bee. Native to Europe, honey bees were introduced to North America during the 1600s and have been busily pollinating our crops …

Common Loon by Gary Lackie

Biologists Study Impact of BP Oil Disaster On Loons

4/15/2014 // By Laura Tangley

Just over a year ago, I held a “charismatic megavertebrate” on my lap. As a participant on a research project in the Gulf of Mexico just off the coast of Louisiana, I had tucked the common loon’s head under my …

Raccoon kits by Barbara Fleming

How to Keep Wild Raccoons Wild

3/31/2014 // By Laura Tangley

Whether you live in the country, the city or the suburbs, if you’re frequently out and about after sunset, you’ve likely encountered a raccoon or two in your yard or neighborhood. Highly adaptable mammals, these masked carnivores seem to make …