Wild About Utah

Wild About Utah is a weekly nature series produced by Utah Public Radio in cooperation with Stokes Nature Center, Bridgerland Audubon Society, Quinney College of Natural Resources, Cache Valley Wildlife Association, Utah State University and Utah Master Naturalist Program - USU Extension. More about Wild About Utah can be found here.

Utah is a state endowed with many natural wonders from red rock formations to salt flats. And from desert wetlands to columns of mountains forming the basin and range region. When we look closer, nature is everywhere including just outside our door.

Hear the wonders of Utah: plants, animals, geologic formations; ancient, present; terrestrial, avian and aquatic. Brought to you by the Moab Area Travel Council

Ways to Connect

State Symbols on Wild About Utah

Mar 13, 2018
Topaz gemstone
US Geological Survey

Most people could probably name the state bird or the state tree, but what about the state gem? The state grass? State fruit?  Do you know why they are important to Utah?  Here are just a few of Utah’s State Symbols that you might not have known.

'Journey North' on Wild About Utah

Mar 2, 2018
Citizen-scientist in yard

To those who take personal pride in their yard, park, field, or community you could become part of an amazing network called Journey North.  This is a free, extremely easy Citizen-Science online activity that people can simply enjoy, or enter data about their own backyard and join over 80,000 other people and schools that participate regularly.

The Language Of Ravens on Wild About Utah

Feb 23, 2018
The Common Raven
National Parks Service

I was three days downriver and hadn’t seen a soul since shoving my canoe away from the boat ramp outside of town. The only sounds accompanying my solitude were the white noise of rapid water and the echoes of thoughts pin-balling around my mind—that is, until the third morning when, stooped over the small, blue roar of my cook stove, I was startled by an unfamiliar sound. 

Our Winterless Winter on Wild About Utah

Feb 20, 2018

Our winterless winter. I’ve been in this lovely valley over 30 years and have never experienced such a balmy January, and now February. The thaw began January first and never ended. As an avid cross country skier, I fear my days of low elevation skiing have ended over a month early.

Soundscapes on Wild About Utah

Feb 9, 2018
National Parks Service

Imagine yourself in your favorite place outside.  What sounds do you expect to hear?  The sound of water rushing over rocks? Crickets chirping? The wind softly blowing through the trees?  These are some of the natural sounds you might expect to hear, but it might not always work out that way.  

Utah Envirothon on Wild About Utah

Feb 2, 2018
Ron Hellstern

No matter where you live in the State of Utah, you are located in one of the 38 Conservation Districts managed by the Utah Conservation Commission. Each of those Districts sponsor and support a wonderful program for High School students called the Utah Envirothon (which simply means a marathon competition to understand Utah’s environments).

South Canyon Sage-Grouse on Wild About Utah

Jan 26, 2018
Nicki Frey

At 3:00 a.m. on a frigid winter morning Nicki Frey, an extension associate professor in the Department of Wildland Resources at USU, leads a group of new biologists who are trapping west of Bryce Canyon. 

PEHart via Visual hunt / CC BY-SA

Last Saturday 3 intrepid young families joined us for a morning with the Stokes Nature Center slipping and sliding along a canyon trail to discover animal and plant adaptations to survive the winter. 

Classroom In The Sky on Wild About Utah

Jan 12, 2018
Eric Newell

Edith Bowen third graders recently had the opportunity to visit the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge in Brigham City. The day was chock full of exciting activities meant to engage students’ senses and ground their understanding of core curriculum within the context of the place we were visiting. It was awareness we were after, using the semi-wild freshwater wetlands as a wellspring of imagination and thought.

Utah's Dark Skies on Wild About Utah

Jan 5, 2018

The night sky...throughout history humans have looked up after the sun set in the evening and marveled at the astral bodies spread above them in a sea of black. This sight has inspired people from every age of history and from every culture around the world.


On December 19th, I will have joined several others for an exciting day of counting bird species and numbers in our lovely, snowy valley. Our numbers will be entered on a database that will be shared with the world. 

13 Tips For Winter Bird Feeding on Wild About Utah

Dec 8, 2017
Ron Hellstern

Most people enjoy watching birds, except for their occasional deposits on cars or windows.  In an earlier program, I mentioned at least fifteen benefits that birds provide to humans and planet Earth.  But as human population and developments increase, the survival of many bird species becomes threatened.  

Talking Dirt on Wild About Utah

Dec 1, 2017

It’s time to talk dirt- and I’m not talking politics, but real, factual dirt! Of all our amazing planets ecosystems, there is one that rises above all others. It’s the one your home is standing on, the one you don’t want your kids to track in the house. By now you’ve probably guessed it!

Farewell Autumn on Wild About Utah

Nov 14, 2017
US Forest Service

Many people enjoy Autumn as their favorite season of the year. Temperatures are comfortable, most pesky insects are absent, animal migrations are evident, and beautiful Fall colors on the trees and shrubs are stunning. But why do these deciduous plants change color? Consider daylight, temperature, and chemistry.

The Urban Ecotone on Wild About Utah

Nov 14, 2017

A small herd of deer bounded away over the manicured grounds of the Logan Cemetery, tumbled through its faux wrought-iron gateway, and hurdled across empty campus streets. I watched the deer disappear into alleyways between ocher-bricked University buildings, contemplating their explosion of wild life as my city woke to a quiet dawn.

Bryan Maloney

Along the bottom of the Weber River lives a genetically-distinct fish called the bluehead sucker. 

Its head is colored in dusty shades of blue, brown and gold.  From the gills to the tail the fish has a pattern of gold, diamond-shaped scales with dark brown borders, which grow larger and more distinct closer to the tail.

Third Graders & Kokanee Salmon on Wild About Utah

Oct 13, 2017

It’s a cool crisp morning as my Edith Bowen third graders disembark their mini buses at Cinnamon Creek Campground and sprint for the water’s edge. We’re here to witness an animalian rite of passage as old as evolutionary time: the Salmon Run.

Majestic Yosemite on Wild About Utah

Sep 15, 2017

It is the place where the Great Spirit stood when He made the entire Earth.  So said the resident Ahwahneechee Native Americans and, aesthetically speaking, few who have witnessed sunrise from the misty meadows of the Yosemite Valley will contend against their point of view.

Bird Brains on Wild About Utah

Sep 7, 2017
Naitonal Science Foundation

When I was a young lad being called “bird brain” was an indication that one was lacking in mental capacity.

Over the years I’ve come to question this connotation, and might even consider it a compliment. I suggest that quantity of this gray matter might be outweighed by quality.

Jereme Gaeta

In Bear Lake, there lives a small, bright blue eyed, bottom-dwelling fish species that may appear insignificant as it moves among the lake’s cobble areas.

The Zion Narrows on Wild About Utah

Sep 1, 2017
Department of Interior

Seventeen miles, and three potential swims. If those two descriptors aren’t deterrents, great scenery awaits those who hike the Zion Narrows from the top down into the main canyon. 

Josh Boling

It took all of Frank Clark’s seven steel-ball cartridges to bring down Old Ephraim, the infamous Grizzly Bear that, for many years in the early 20th century, plagued the shepherds of the Northern Wasatch Mountains. 

Securing Utah’s Moose Population on Wild About Utah

Jul 14, 2017
Sam Robertson

Historically, the settlers and hunters of Utah didn’t find moose when they were exploring the state. It wasn’t’ until 1906-07 when the first recorded moose sighting occurred in Utah. 

Mayfly Life Cycle on Wild About Utah

Jul 10, 2017

It’s commonly believed that mayflies live for only one day. If you visit a cold, clear river in the spring or early summer, you might see what is known as a “mayfly hatch,” when millions of delicate, glassy insects suddenly appear on the surface of the water, take to the air, and then fall into the river later that day and apparently drown.

June Fireflies on Wild About Utah

Jun 23, 2017

Most people are fascinated by unusual displays of light.  Meteor showers, solar eclipses, and the stunning Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, are grandiose in scale and mesmerize onlookers.  But people are also enchanted with the small life-forms that create their own light.