John Latimer

Staff Phenologist

As a mail carrier in rural Grand Rapids, Minn., for 35 years, John Latimer put his own stamp on a career that delivered more than letters. Indeed, while driving the hundred-mile round-trip daily route, he passed the time by observing and recording seasonal changes in nature, learning everything he could about the area’s weather, plants and animals, and becoming the go-to guy who could answer customers’ questions about what they were seeing in the environment.

The expertise he developed along the way turned him into one of Minnesota’s leading phenologists and host of a popular weekly radio show Phenology that attracts nature lovers and regular phenology contributors from around the state.

Ways to Connect

John Swartz via KAXE-KBXE Season Watch FB Page

Phenology is the rhythmic, biological nature of events as they relate to climate.  Our resident phenologist John Latimer has been keeping phenology notes for 33 years, documenting the subtle and not so subtle changes he notices in the natural world.  Every week, he gives our listeners a full report of what he's noticing as well as what others have reported.  This week's report is full of hints of spring!  Horned larks, red fox, bluebirds and even the very early wound of a wood frog all make it into this week's report. 

Jacob Laducer via KAXE KBXE Season Watch FB Group

We heard from students and adults from all over our listening area this week.  It's an exciting time in northern Minnesota and evidence of Spring is all around us!  The sap is running, the ice is cracking and morning cloak butterflies have arrived.  Reports of active wildlife abound - chipmunks, coyotes, muskrats, golden eyes,  hooded mergansers and a rooster that crowed 68 times in a row are just a few assurances that our weather is changing! 

Marilyn Lee via FB KAXE-KBXE Season Watch page

  Each Tuesday, our resident phenologist John Latimer takes listeners on a journey through the outdoor world. This week, listeners learn about breeding practices of the adorable saw whet owl and recently noticed flight activity of the Canada goose and the Tundra Swan.  John talks with Harvey Tjader about wind pollination vs insect pollination, changes occurring in trees and shrubs at this time and evergreen varieties to keep an eye out for right now.  

Dallas Hudson

Thanks to the Phenology Show, Tuesdays are naturally amazing at Northern Community Radio! Tuesday is  the day we gather reports from students and listeners around the broadcast region and find out what people have been noticing out in the natural world.

Steve Patterson via KAXE-KBXE Season Watch FB Page

Each week, our resident phenologist John Latimer gives a full phenology report.  In this week's report, John discusses great horned owl and eagle nesting habits, gives an education on ticks, shares his longing to see a snowy owl, his love of walking frozen bogs and when we'll start to see wildlife including red tail hawks, killdear and blue herons. 

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