Guess who just turned 7?

Prionus heroicus | Harding Co., New Mexico

Prionus heroicus | Harding Co., New Mexico

No, not this very alarmed male Prionus heroicus (among North America’s largest longhorned beetles) seen this past June at Mills Rim Campground in northeastern New Mexico—although he could very well have spent several years underground as a ever-fatter grub feeding on tree roots (probably oaks) before emerging as an adult.

No, today is the 7th birthday of this blog, and I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I’d almost completely forgotten about it. To a human, seven years of age is still immaturity, but in blog years that’s getting close to old age—perhaps like it’s author! I guess old age (on both counts) qualifies me to reminisce a little bit. I’ve seen the blogging thing come—there was a time when it seemed everybody was blogging, and I’ve seen it mature into something a little different. People still blog, but not as many and not for the same reasons. In the early days, blogs were how people with common interests connected and interacted. Nowadays other social media (e.g., Twitter and Facebook) have usurped that role. I don’t think that has made blogs irrelevant, but rather they now seem to serve more for outreach and as searchable repositories for information (at least among natural history blogs). In the past I’ve vacillated greatly in my feelings about this (and I still do sort of miss the “good ol’ days” of lively conversations in the comments). But actually I’m okay with it. When I want my social fix I jump onto Facebook (or Twitter in certain circumstances). When I want to write a little more substantively—to recount memorable field trips, document interesting things I’ve learned, reflect on my experiences as an entomologist, etc.—I blog. I used to watch hit counts; now I hardly ever give them a thought. I care less about who is reading and how many of them there are than I do about the content of the writing and quality of the images I share with those who do choose to read. I am enjoying the fruits of having blogged consistently for seven years—able to write well (and fast), vastly more versed in natural history, and connected broadly to the larger entomological community—and that alone makes it worth continuing. I’ve learned to blog for me and not for what I think others want to see. How liberating! After 7 years, I am more comfortable with and motivated to write than ever.

To all those people who have followed me, either now or in the past, thank you for your part in helping me in this journey. To those who are still to come, I look forward to meeting you!

© Ted C. MacRae 2014

About Ted C. MacRae

Ted C. MacRae is a research entomologist by vocation and beetle taxonomist by avocation. Areas of expertise in the latter include worldwide jewel beetles (Buprestidae) and North American longhorned beetles (Cerambycidae). More recent work has focused on North American tiger beetles (Cicindelidae) and their distribution, ecology, and conservation.
This entry was posted in Cerambycidae, Coleoptera and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Guess who just turned 7?

  1. Debra says:

    Congratulations on your 7th. I have only recntly found your blog so selfishly I hope for many more years to come.

  2. Sean McCann says:

    Congrats! When you look back you have built a great body of work!

  3. vsvevg says:

    Congratulations Ted. You’re an inspiration.

  4. Mindi says:

    Congratulations! I just celebrated my first week of my nature photography blog yesterday haha! Having just started, this post is so inspiring!

  5. Dominik Hofer says:

    Congratulation!! Many thanks for your constant efforts! Keep going on with this wonderful blog! Cheers

  6. John Coffman says:

    I’ve been collecting since 1969 and member of Lepidopterists and Coleopterists off and on since then and I never knew you exhisted until a few weeks ago. I find your writings very interesting.

  7. Mike Powell says:

    Congratulations. Your blog is a wonderful mix of hardcore scientific work, which appeals to some readers, and awesome photography, which often appeals to an entirely different audience (I am in the latter group). I jumped into the world of blogs only a couple of years ago and have never regretted it. I think there must be some kind of scientific formula for comparing blog-years with human-years, in a way similar to how we talk of dog-years.

  8. Congratulations Ted! Glad you’ve reached blogging serenity. I hope to keep reading your posts and looking at your photographs for many years to come!

  9. Dina says:

    Congratulations on your 7th blog birthday! Well done!🙂
    Stay a happy blogger,
    Dina Xx

  10. patti says:

    Congratulations!

  11. Dan Mays says:

    Congratulations Ted! For my taste, you are right on track.

  12. Daniel D Dye says:

    Happy 7th Birthday to Beetles in the Bush!! I’m not quite sure when I placed your site in my favorites, Ted, but I know it’s been years. I visit your site several times a week to see what new adventures you’ve been on and to learn about the interesting critters you’ve seen and photographed. I was excited when my website turned 14 in September, so I know how you feel. Please keep on keeping on.

  13. Thanks, everybody for the kind comments – definitely motivates me to keep going🙂

  14. Congratulations, I visit your blog often, I I always learn something.

  15. Marti says:

    Congratulations! It shows true dedication and passion for what you love.

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