Eric Dinerstein's Nature Essays

Eric Dinerstein lives in Cabin John, Maryland, and he frequently visits Monticello Park. Since April, 2013, he has been writing essays about nature for the monthly Cabin John publication The Village News. Eric uses his broad knowledge of the natural world to illuminate the myriad aspects of nature which can be viewed in the Washington metro area. The essays are illustrated by Trudy Nicholson, who also lives in Cabin John.

Eric Dinerstein
Eric Dinerstein

Eric is the Director of Biodiversity and Wildlife Solutions at RESOLVE, a nonprofit organization that forges sustainable solutions to critical environmental, social, and public health challenges by creating innovative partnerships where they are least likely and most needed. He is the head of RESOLVE's Biodiversity and Wildlife Solutions program, which combines creative field-oriented approaches to conservation with innovative science and technology to dramatically improve how we monitor and protect endangered wildlife, their habitats and the communities who rely upon them. RESOLVE is currently teaming up with other groups to map a global "safety net" for the planet that would protect and connect 50 percent of the world's land area. The effort was launched and funded by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation as part of a larger $20 million grant that aims to accelerate ocean and land conservation initiatives, indigenous rights, and innovative solutions to the climate crisis. (The Leonardo DeCaprio Foundation is now part of a larger organization called Re:wild)

Previously, Eric was Lead Scientist and Vice President for Conservation Science at the World Wildlife Fund. His areas of specialty include tropical mammals, large mammal biology, biogeography, bats, rhinos, seed dispersal, and community ecology. He has led many important scientific projects, including mapping the Global 200 Ecoregions, examples of which form the basis of his book Tigerland and Other Unintended Destinations. He is also the author of The Kingdom of Rarities, The Return of the Unicorns: The Natural History and Conservation of the Greater One-Horned Rhinoceros and What Elephants Know: A Novel, among other articles and publications.

You can access Eric's essays in PDF format from the list below.


A Resolution for 2024: Slowing Down to Look at Nature
Uh-Uh, or Something to Crow About
Invaders of the Potomac
Rewilding the Potomac: The Return of the Shad


Pausing, to Appreciate the Comma
A Cranefly in Winter
A Churn of Earthworms
With Respect to the Ant
Bumblebee's SOS — A Plea for Help
Of God and Beetles
Bats and COVID
A Gardener's Best Friend
Here Comes the Coyote


Hiding in Plain Sight
Bubo the Great
Peeps of Spring
A Summer of Bats
Brown Bats, Big and Small
Bats and COVID
Here Comes the Coyote


Homegrown Wildlife Preserves in Cabin John: Getting in on the Ground Floor
Building a Backyard Wilderness II: A Trio of Glorious Native Shrubs
More Ground to Cover
Nature Rolls Out Her Carpets
Pride of Maryland
The Tree with the Fringe on the Top
Shady Characters
Summer's End
Order in the Garden!
A Golden Oldie


A Year of Invasives: A Murmuration of Starlings
The Sounds of Rivets Popping: A Farewell to Eastern Hemlocks?
Invasion of the Buttercups
From COVID-19 to Garlic Mustard: The Urgency of Confronting Invasives
A Fragrant Infiltrator
Death by Honeysuckle
Beware the Wintercreeper
The Perils of English Ivy and Other Stranglers
Life Without Chestnuts


Bluebirds in Winter
The Winterberry Army
A Mouse with a Beak
Spring Comes Wrapped in a Mourning Cloak...or a White Petticoat
Think Like a Skink
Summer Passion
Insect Armageddon: Part 1
Our Backyard Birds Are Made from Bugs: Insect Armageddon - Part 2
Tick Anxiety, and a Local Preventative
Foxes Among Us


Hawkish Behavior
Nature in Black-and-white
Wild Turkeys
Saved by a Rose Tree
From the Catbird's Seat
Developer, Homeowner, Spare That Hickory!
The Rights of Oaks


Kneeling Before the Ground Pine
A Hovering Falcon
In Memoriam: Ann Lucy and the Grand Old Trees of Cabin John
Southern Magnolias in the Flesh
Spring Tubas, Summer Trumpets
Nature's Opportunists
Summer's Dragons
Musclewood and Moth


Winter Holly
Great Blue Heronosaur
Rites of a Woodcock Spring
A Short-Lived Wonder
All Hail the Hackberry Emperor!
Bears in the Backyard
What's in a Name? The Case of the Cedar Waxwing


Feeding the Hawks
The Advantages of Smelling Like a Skunk (or a Dead Monkey)
Ants in Our Plants
Bambi or Godzilla?
The Mimics Among Us
The Wild Fruit Diet
Autumn Anomalies


Hardy Birds
Wild Orchids in Winter
Redhead Alert
Wood Ducks on A Wild River
Hissing Geese, Hungry Snappers
Loudmouth of the Locks
Bogeymen of Nature
Restoring the Monarchy to Cabin John
Raven's Roost
Cabin John – Rich in Woodpeckers


Spring Singers Worth Watching
Washington and Jefferson's Favorite Fruit
The Most Beautiful Bird in North America
Honeysuckle and Hummingbirds
Plant Bites Dog
The Mysterious Night Raven of the Canal
A Holiday Look at Nature