Natural North Dakota

“When I was a kid, my mom told me to ‘Go play outside.’ So I did. And I have been enjoying it ever since!”

-Chuck Lura

Beginning January 1, 2018, Natural North Dakota essays have moved to this page.

Tune in each Saturday and Sunday at 8:35 am CT for
Chuck Lura’s “Natural North Dakota” or listen online here
(audio is posted shortly after the show airs).

2008 – 2009 Archive

2009 – 2010 Archive

2010 – 2011 Archive

2011 – 2012 Archive

2012 – 2013 Archive

2013 – 2014 Archive

2014 – 2015 Archive

2015 – 2016 Archive

2016 – 2017 Archive

Autumn 2017

September 2 Big Bluestem

September 9 Nightshade Family

September 16 Audubon National Wildlife Refuge

September 23 Autumnal Equinox

September 30 Harvest Moon

October 7 Giant Water Bug

October 14 Pheasants

October 21 Mange

October 28 Quackgrass


Winter 2017-18


November 4 Winter Finch Forecast

November 11 Nuisance Bugs and Meteor Showers

November 18 Chickadee Longevity and Mortality 

November 25 Hawthorn

December 2 Winter Beavers and Finches

December 9 Geminids Meteor Shower

December 16 Russian Olive

December 23 Animals in Winter

December 30 Scuds

Spring 2018


Summer 2018


About Chuck Lura: Chuck has a broad knowledge of “Natural North Dakota” and loves sharing that knowledge with others. Since 2005 he has written a weekly column, “Naturalist at Large,” for North Dakota’s newest newspaper, the Lake Metigoshe Mirror. His columns also appear under “The Naturalist” in several other weekly newspapers across North Dakota. A native of northern Iowa, Lura received an associate degree from Waldorf College in Forest City, Iowa. He then went on to receive his bachelor’s degree in biology from South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota. After teaching high school biology in South Dakota and Iowa, he returned to SDSU to obtain his master’s degree and then on for his doctorate in botany from North Dakota State University in Fargo. Lura has been a biology professor at Dakota College at Bottineau since 1984. His teaching responsibilities have been principally biology, botany, and range management. He has also conducted and published research on ecological aspects of grasslands in the northern Great Plains. Chuck lives at Lake Metigoshe with his wife Mary (LD teacher at Bottineau High School), an Old English sheepdog, two cats, and lots of houseplants. They have three grown children: Erik, John, and Anna Sill. Since childhood Chuck has spent much of his spare time enjoying nature. In his spare time he can often be found exploring North Dakota’s prairies, forest, and waters. He is an avid cross country skier (perhaps compulsive) and cyclist. His other outdoor activities include “botanizing,” as well as canoeing, hunting, and fishing. Natural North Dakota is supported by NDSU Central Grasslands Research Extension Center and Dakota College at Bottineau, and by the members of Prairie Public. Thanks to Sunny 101.9 in Bottineau for their recording services.

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