species is a native of all quarters of the state. It attains a height of from three to four or five feet, and has smooth, lance-shaped, taper pointed leaves. It bears a large, more or less pyramidal cluster of flowers, which lean over somewhat to one side. Nebraska could not have a better floral representative than this sturdy, yet graceful, goldenrod.

    Weeds. Upon the open country of the Plains where the winds are almost constantly blowing briskly, seeds of all kinds are much more readily distributed than they are in the wooded regions. This will account for the rapid spread of weeds when once they reach the open country beyond the Missouri river. Then again the whole of the Plains for ages was roamed over by immense droves of buffaloes and antelopes, and later by domestic animals whose range was almost as far as that of their wild relatives. These herds in their rapid and headlong stampedes over the country carried with them the seeds of many plants, thus aiding in their general distribution.
   The general fertility and the great uniformity of the soil has had also much to do with the readiness with which weedy plants obtained a foothold in new stations, and from them increased and spread to others.
   Naturally, in a region having the area and hypsometrical features of Nebraska, the number of native plants which may become weedy is quite large. A region nearly ten times as large as Massachusetts, and ranging in altitude above the sea from about 900 to more than 5,000 feet, can not fail to have many native weedy plants. By actual count no less than 125 native plants are worthy of being ranked as weeds, and while many of these are among the worst pests of the farm, others simply take possession of the open pasture lands of waste and uncultivated places. The more important kinds are the following:

   SQUIRREL-TAIL GRASS (Hordeum jubatum). -- This appears to have originally inhabited the sandy margins and islands of the streams of the state. It was common also upon the alkaline and salt flat,, and from these it spread to the cultivated lands and roadsides almost everywhere. It is one of the most troublesome weeds of the state.

   COUCH GRASS (Agropyrum repens). -- This pest of the eastern farmer is widely distributed upon the Plains, but it has not as yet attracted much attention. It is cut for hay, of which it supplies a fair amount of good quality.

   PORCUPINE GRASS (Stipa spartea). -- In the eastern part of the state this is a common weed upon the high prairies, where its sharp, needle-like fruits are very hurtful to sheep. In the western counties it is replaced by the similar needle grass (S. comata), which in every way is equally troublesome.

   SAND BUR (Cenchrus tribuloides). -- This grass loves the sandy soil of the large streams, from which it has doubtless spread to the higher lands. It is abundant in the eastern half of the state, and is probably our worst native weed.

   SMART WEEDS (Polygonum acre and P. hydropiper). -- Common in the eastern counties.

   HEARTSEASE (Polygonum emersum, P. terrestre, P. incarnatum, P. pennsylvanicum). -- All are troublesome weeds in lowlands.

   TUMBLE WEEDS. -- Two native plants bear this name, viz., Corispermum hyssopifolium and Cycloloma platyphyllum. They take possession of the recently plowed land in the central portions of the state, and often completely cover the ground. In the autumn they begin their uneasy career of rolling and tumbling over the Plains, dropping their seeds everywhere.

   LOW PIGWEED (Amaranthus blitoides). -- As common throughout Nebraska as purslane (which it much resembles in manner of growth) is in the eastern states.

   LOCO WEEDS (Astragalus mollissmus) and CRAZY WEEDS (Oxytropis lamberti). -- These widely distributed plants are generally supposed to cause the disorder known as "loco" which attacks horses and cattle upon the plains. While it is possible that they are innocent of this charge, they are worthless weeds of the uplands and rich dry bottoms adjacent, and should be eradicated.

   SHOESTRING (Amorpha canescens). -- For the farmer who undertakes to break up the upland prairie where it abounds, this is one of the most troublesome plants, its long, deep, tough roots offering a serious obstacle to the work. It abounds throughout the state.

   MILKWEEDS (Asclepias syriaca, A. speciosa, A. incarnata, and A. verticillata). -- The first and second are pests in cultivated land, where their deep-lying roots enable them to successfully resist all efforts to dislodge them. Both are widely distributed. The third species oc-



curs along streams and in moist places in the eastern half of the state as a tall weed. The fourth species is a low weed in pastures and meadows throughout the state.

   WILD MORNING GLORY (Convolvulus sepium). -- In the eastern half of the state it is too common in cultivated fields. It appears to be spreading.

   HORSE NETTLE (Solanum carolinense). -- A prickly weed of the eastern counties.

   BUFFALO BUR (Solanum rostratum). -- This most vile weed is apparently an immigrant from the southwest. It occurs now abundantly in all parts of Nebraska and is rapidly extending eastward.

   NIGHTSHADE (Solanum triflorum). -- A low-growing weed spreading eastward from the central portions of the state.

   WILD VERBENA (Verbena stricta, V. hastata, V. urticaefolia, V. bracteosa, V. pinnatifida). -- All are weedy plants. The first occurs in the eastern half of the state on prairies of all kinds; the second and third are confined to the moist lands of the eastern counties; the fourth is a low weed throughout the state, while the last is like it, but confined to the western half of the state.

   PRAIRIE PINK (Lygodesmia juncea). -- Throughout the state this is a persistent weed, about which farmers frequently make complaint.

   THISTLES (Cnicus altissimus, C. undulatus, C. ochrocentrus). -- These native thistles occur as weeds in pastures, and especially upon the rich, unbroken prairies. The first is in the eastern counties, while the second and third are in the central and western portions of the state.

   SPANISH NEEDLES (Bidens frondosa). -- Becoming common in cornfields and by roadsides in eastern Nebraska.

   SUNFLOWERS (Helianthus annuus and H. grosseserratus). -- The first is very common throughout the state, being the most conspicuous weed of all vacant places and poorly cultivated fields. The second is a common perennial species in waste places and roadsides in eastern Nebraska. Several other species are occasionally more or less weedy in their habits.

   COCKLEBUR (Xanthium canadense). -- Very common by roadsides and in confields (sic) in eastern Nebraska. I doubt whether this is a native plant of the state.

   RAGWEEDS (Ambrosia trifida, A. artemisiaefolia and A. psilostachya). -- These pests of the eastern half of the state appear like immigrants from the East. They abound by roadsides in the rich moist soils along the water-courses, often attaining a height of from ten to sixteen feet. Two species of Iva (I. ciliata and I. xapithiifolia), which look so much like ragweeds that they are not easily distinguished by the farmer, are common weeds growing with the preceding in low lands in eastern Nebraska.

   HORSEWEED (Erigeron canadensis). -- A common weed of the prairies and fields in the eastern half of the state. Its little relative, E. divaricatus, occurs in similar stations and has about the same range.

   IRON WEEDS (Vernonia fasciculata). -- A troublesome weed in low pastures in the eastern half of the state.

   The introduced weeds include some of our most troublesome pests upon the farm, and yet the eastern student will remark upon the entire absence of some of the worst weeds with which he is familiar.

   SHEPHERDS PURSE (Bursa bursa-pastoris). -- Found everywhere in the eastern half of the state.

   RUSSIAN THISTLE (Salsola tragus). -- Apparently now to be found throughout the state. The mature plant is more or less spherical in shape and consists of many elongated branching twigs which grow outward and upward from the root. When not quite matured the whole plant has a reddish color, but as its seeds ripen it bleaches out and eventually is almost white. Well-grown specimens are from two to three feet in diameter, but where crowded together they may be much less. Each twig and branch is covered on all sides by hard, stout prickles, which are very sharp and very irritating to the touch. These prickles are in threes, that is, there are three together in a place and pointing in different directions. At the upper side of the base of each three prickles there is a seed, and as there are about ten of these to each inch, it is easily seen that the seeds produced by every well-grown plant must reach a great many thousands. A calculation made with some care shows that a medium-sized plant contains between 10,000 and 15,000 seeds. Late in the fall, and in the early part of winter, the root breaks off, and the plant is free to roil away with its freight of seeds.

   LAMBS QUARTERS (Chenopodium album and C. hybridum). -- The first is found all over the state, while the second has not advanced beyond the eastern counties.

   PIG WEED (Amaranthus retroflexits). -- Common in field and waste places in the eastern half of the state.



   TUMBLE WEED (Amaranthus albus). -- One of the most common weeds of the recently broken prairie land, almost everywhere in the state.

   PURSLANE (Portulaca oleracea). -- Now to be found everywhere in the state. It is not only a wayside weed, but a great pest in fields, pastures, and lawns.

   PLANTAIN (Plantagao major). -- Now very widely distributed. The narrow leaved plantain (P. lanceolata) is appearing in the eastern counties.

   DANDELION (Taraxocum tarazacum). -- In eastern counties and rapidly extending westward.

   CREEPING THISTLE (Cnicus arvensis). -- This so-called "Canada thistle" has appeared in a few places in the eastern counties.

   BURDOCK (Arctium lappa). -- Not common and mostly confined to the eastern counties.

   OX-EYE DAISY (Chrysanthemum leucanthemum). -- Appearing in the eastern counties, where it seems to thrive.

    FAUNA.10 The little work that has thus far been done in Nebraska towards gaining a knowledge of its animal life, indicates that our fauna is comparatively rich in species and in many instances in individuals also. In fact, in this respect it seems to be ahead of most of the neighboring states. Several causes for this richness in forms of life may be cited. When we take into consideration the variation in altitude above sea level, the differences in surface configuration, climate, etc., that pertain to the state, its location, and the relation which it bears to the country at large, perhaps the wonderment concerning this great richness will be less. Our southeastern corner is only about eight hundred feet, our western border almost six thousand feet above tide water. The state is divided into timbered, prairie, and plains regions. It lies nearly in the middle of the United States, with a high mountain chain to the west and a giant waterway along its-eastern boundary. In. fact, in Nebraska meet eastern, western, southern, and northern faunas, while we also have a fauna of our own, 90 to speak. We find forms belonging to low and high altitudes, to wet and dry climates, to timbered and prairie countries, as well as to semi-desert and alkali regions. The sandy interior also offers special features for a distinct fauna.
   A casual comparison of past and present conditions shows that the native animals have materially changed since Nebraska was first settled. Many of the earlier forms have disappeared or become much restricted in their distribution. On the other hand, several forms have greatly increased in numbers and have extended their range as well. Less than fifty years ago our plains were covered by immense herds of the bison, or American buffalo, and elk in large bands roamed at liberty throughout the middle and western portions. Both species of deer, the white-tailed or Virginia, and the black-tailed or mule, in considerable numbers, were to be seen in our woodlands, among the fringes of brush and trees that marked the smaller water-courses, or else lurked in the tall grasses of the sand-hills and other rough portions of the country where they were able to hide during daytime from their lesser enemies. The antelope ranged the prairies at will, even to within a comparatively short distance of our eastern borders. Some mountain sheep, too, were at home in the rougher country in the northwest, while at times small bands of wild horses also galloped over the Plains. Coincident and in a measure dependent upon these for their food supply were foxes, wolves, panthers, lynxes, and even a few bears. But all this is now changed. Where the bison, elk, deer, and antelope once browsed our grasses, we now have instead herds of cattle and sheep. The larger and fiercer carnivora, along with the forms upon which they were dependent, have been killed or driven away.
   The numbers of our small mammals, too, have been greatly changed. The beaver, otter, wolverine, badger, and several others of the fur-bearing kinds are now very scarce where they were once common or even abundant. A few of the rodents, such as are favored by the cultivation of the soil and growing of grain, instead of diminishing, have increased. These are forms like the prairie dog, pocket gopher,

   10 This description of the animal life of Nebraska is by Lawrence Bruner, B.Sc., professor of entomology and ornithology in the University of Nebraska.-ED.



and ground squirrels, together with some of the mice. Several forms have even come into the state from beyond our borders and are now much at home in towns and cities as well as about our buildings on the farms.
   Bird life, too, has greatly changed in Nebraska since the advent of civilized man. Many of our larger and most showy species have nearly or altogether disappeared; while a number of the smaller ones, which were formerly present in flocks of thousands, are now few and scattered. Of the larger species are the wild turkey, cranes, Canada goose, and swans, both the whistling and trumpeter; and of the smaller, birds like the Eskimo curlew, Bartram's sandpiper and golden plover. Then, too, the Lesser prairie hen, which was occasionally taken in the middle and upper portions of the Elkhorn valley, seems to have almost or quite disappeared from the state.
   Notwithstanding the ravages that have been wrought by the thoughtless upon the bird life as formerly found within our borders, we still lead our sister states in the number of distinct species which are regular or incidental to our fauna. The partial, but rather careful study which has already been made has brought to light fully 415 or perhaps 420 recognized forms. Many of these are exceedingly valuable, and most of the others notably beneficial as insect destroyers or eaters of the seeds of noxious weeds, and only a few -- less than half a dozen species -- definitely harmful. Owing to the persistent efforts of our teachers, backed by the various members of the Nebraska Ornithologists' Union, a majority of our leading citizens, and the state press generally, a very strong sentiment in favor of bird protection is being established here. It is to be hoped that this sentiment will be a guaranty of the future protection and increase of our feathered friends.
   Our fishes, while not numerous in individuals in every case, are nevertheless quite plentiful in distinct kinds. Some new and valuable forms have been added in the past and are annually being added to suitable waters. Just how many distinct forms occur in the waters of Nebraska is not even a matter of conjecture, since little or no effort has as yet been made towards a systematic collection of the forms found in any one stream, to say nothing of the numerous watercourses of the state.
   The batrachians, reptiles, and ophidians are also quite well represented when we take into consideration the conditions under which these various animals must exist. Only the latter, however, have received anything like a moderately careful study. In 1901, W. Edgar Taylor, at that time professor of natural history in the State Normal school at Peru, prepared a paper on this group which was published in connection with the report of the State Board of Agriculture for that year. In this treatise twenty-five varieties are described. Although incomplete, it answers fairly well as a good beginning towards a knowledge of our snakes.
   Such other animal forms as the mollusks, crustaceans, vermes, etc., along with the myriapods, arachnids, and insects, which form by far the larger percentage of the animal life of any region, are still much less known. Notwithstanding this comparative lack of knowledge on the part of the students of natural history concerning the life indigenous to the state, enough is known to warrant the statement that all of these are also well represented in every section of Nebraska. Of course the necessary investigations regarding the presence and ravages of harmful insects, which have been carried on from time to time in various regions during different years, have supplied the data for some working knowledge of these creatures. Aside from this cursory work, however, no systematic attempt has been made towards learning just what forms are to be found here, or what part the different kinds take in the economy of nature. In the very few isolated groups that have been at all carefully studied the results show much larger lists than were expected. For example, the butterflies number about one hundred and forty distinct kinds; the grasshoppers one hundred and eighty; the tiger beetles approximately forty, the bees several hundred, etc. Taken together, perhaps, our complete list of insects when made out will be in the neighborhood of



from twelve thousand to fifteen thousand species. Then to these must be added something like five or six hundred spiders and other arachnids, seventy-five myriapods, and an indeterminate number of parasitic worms, crustacea, and other minute forms which live in the soil and water.
    Among the insects that are of especial interest, for one reason or another, such pests as the destructive grasshoppers, or locusts, the chinch bug, the army worm, codling moth, tent caterpillar, cut-worms, June beetles, Colorado potato beetle, squash bug, and, in fact, most of the other recognized pests of this class, figure conspicuously. Some of these are native to the state, while others have been introduced from regions beyond our borders. Commendable interest is taken by both our horticulturists and agriculturalists towards their suppression, and a continual warfare is being waged against them. Aside from the large number of destructive species that are indigenous to the state, we are also favored with equally large numbers of predaceous and parasitic forms which are doing their share toward keeping in check the harmful ones above referred to. Thus it is that the natural balance is, in a measure, maintained among these numerous kinds of animals which are at home in our state.

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