Nature Walk with Brad Klein

Nature Walk with Brad Klein

Nature Walk with Brad Klein highlights the natural world in the Lehigh Valley. You’ll hear this occasional short feature, during WLVR’s Morning Edition.

Aside from being an award-winning journalist and producer, Brad is an avid naturalist. He leads popular nature programs for the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens and  the American Museum of Natural History. And he is a co-founder of the New York City Bat Group.  Brad loves the natural beauty of Pennsylvania and is excited to share the sights and sounds he encounters.

Since we are in the midst of the Spring bird migration, right now they are centered around birdsong, but the series is not simply an identification guide to singing birds. Expect brief seasonal stories of what can be observed on any given day. Birds, Plants, Insects, mammals, astronomy, weather, and even poetry will make appearances.

Click HERE to share nature sounds from your neighborhood.

Episode 13: Thunder and Lightning

Lightning Over Brooklyn, NY (Photo by Brad Klein)

WLVR’s Brad Klein has tried capturing a flash of lightning using photography. This week, he set out to capture the sounds of a thunderstorm, passing through the Valley on Sunday morning. (Best through headphones!)

Episode 12: An Empty Nest

Sibling Ruby-throated Hummingbirds Bethlehem, PA June 28, 2020. Photo| Brad Klein

WLVR’s Brad Klein spotted a Ruby-throated Hummingbird building her nest about 8 weeks ago in Bethlehem. He returned most days and watched the two young birds grow up. They successfully fledged the last week of June. Brother and sister, the male has traces of what will become his brilliant red throat feathers.

Episode 11: A Good Bird

 Yellow-throated Warbler. Photo by Stacie Cantu

WLVR’s Brad Klein reports on hearing an unexpected birdsong in Bethlehem several weeks ago. It turned out to be a ‘good’ bird, a male Yellow-throated Warbler. The rarity has stayed in Bethlehem’s Nisky Hill Cemetery for weeks, singing from the tree tops and pleasing visiting birders.

Episode 10: Drink Your Tea-ee-ee!

Eastern Towheee. Photo| Stacie Cantu

Birding is not a purely visual pastime. It’s also about listening for the songs and calls that surround us. But how to remember hundreds of different bird songs? Long before there was audio recording, naturalists ‘transcribed’ the sound of birds. This one, the Eastern Towhee is said to call out, ‘Drink Your Tea-ee-ee!’

Episode 9: The Yellow-Billed Cuckoo

June 10, 2020

Yellow-billed Cuckoo. Photo | Stacie Cantu

It’s Summer, if not officially, at least for the birds nesting in the Lehigh Valley. WLVR’s Brad Klein presents the Summer sounds of the Yellow-billed Cuckoo, recorded by Nancy Alice Wisser near her home in Northampton County.

Episode 8: The Night Robin

May 26, 2020

 American Robin (Photo by Tom Vullo)

WLVR’s Brad Klein reflects upon an American Robin that perches outside his front door in Bethlehem and begins to sing hours before dawn. Is he just an early bird hoping to get the worm? Or is he a grumpy avian insomniac? 

Episode 7: A ‘New’ Song from the Wood Thrush

May 20, 2020

Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina) photo by: Stacie Cantu

Bird watchers in the field rely on their ears as much as their eyes. WLVR’s Brad Klein recently heard an unfamiliar sound along the D&L Canal Trail in Bethlehem. It turned out to come from a favorite woodland bird, the Wood Thrush. But it was not the usual song from that bird.

Episode 6: Astronomy in May

May 13, 2020

See Mars form a line with Jupiter and Saturn in the predawn sky in March 2020. The asterism known as the “teapot” will be to their right. (Image credit: Space/com via SkySafari App)

Many evenings in April in the Valley, we had brilliant views of Venus in the Western Sky. But this week, the planetary show is around the waning moon. Jupiter, Saturn and Mars will take turns being ‘in conjunction’ with the moon this week. They will appear nearby and share the same celestial longitude with the moon on Tuesday and Thursday nights.

Episode 5: The Dawn Chorus  

May 7, 2020

Prothonotary Warbler – Photo by Stacie Cantu 

May is the peak of songbird migration through the Lehigh Valley. Each morning at dawn, the birds practice their songs. A skilled birder can hear half a dozen species in this short piece.  

Episode 4: What are Birds Singing About?

May 5, 2020

Tufted Titmouse – Photo | Stacie Cantu

May is the peak month for birdsong in the Lehigh Valley. It’s mostly males singing… but what are they saying?

Episode 3: Goose Poop!

May 1, 2020

Photo | Stacie Cantu

Maybe you’ve heard stories of wildlife returning to newly quiet urban centers during the pandemic? WLVR’s Brad Klein has evidence that it’s happening… right outside the Station’s doors….

Episode 2: Peregrine Falcons Nest at Steel Stacks – Bethlehem, PA

April 7, 2020

April 7, 2020

 Peregrine Falcons, the fastest predatory bird on the planet, are nesting across from the WLVR News studios atop the blast furnaces of Bethlehem Steel. That’s where WLVR’s Morning host, Brad Klein noticed them flying about.

And so he reached out to Art McMorris, the Peregrine Falcon coordinator at the Pennsylvania Game Commission, to learn the backstory of the species, and this pair of birds.

They had previously nested nearby on a building known as the High House part of the Steel Stacks complex. But now they seem to have found a new perch, on the Northside of the Easternmost blast furnace.

Episode 1: Song Sparrows and Joggers

April 7, 2020

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia). Photo by Stacie Cantu.

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf and Health Secretary, Dr. Rachel Levine strongly urge residents to wear washable cotton face masks when venturing out for necessities or for exercise.

WLVR’s Brad Klein took a walk along the D&L Canal Trail in Bethlehem and encountered this Song Sparrow, and joggers,  most of whom kept a safe distance.


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