Bing Wallpaper Gallery
Mar 21, 2022
World Poetry Day
"How like a winter hath my absence been / From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year! / What freezings have I felt, what dark days seen! / What old December"s bareness everywhere!"
Mar 20, 2022
World Frog Day
World Frog Day is celebrated every year on March 20, a chance to consider the world"s most famous tailless amphibian. The star of fairy tales, cartoons, films, and TV shows, the charismatic and clearly photogenic frog accounts for almost all amphibian species. Frogs have been around for more than 200 million years, and although they live in both warm and cold places, most reside in tropical rainforests.
Mar 19, 2022
During the fall and spring equinox, the celestial phenomenon known as Chicagohenge occurs when the sun rises or sets directly between the buildings lining Chicago"s east- and west-facing streets. The city"s almost perfectly aligned grid is responsible for the event.
Mar 18, 2022
The ancient Hindu festival of Holi will find revelers caked in these colorful powders by the day"s end. Also referred to as the Festival of Spring, the Festival of Love, and the Festival of Colors, Holi is celebrated during the full moon in the Hindu calendar month of Phalguna, which falls around the middle of March in the Gregorian calendar. This year it"s March 18. Holi symbolizes the triumph of good over evil and celebrates the beginning of spring, the end of winter, and the blossoming of love in all forms. It"s a time for affirming friendships, burying old grievances, and letting romance bloom.
Mar 17, 2022
St. Patrick s Day
Ireland has been called the land of "40 shades of green," but this green leprechaun"s-eye view comes from the feet of California"s coastal redwoods. Today we celebrate St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, who famously never traveled to California. St. Patrick is often depicted holding a shamrock, which he purportedly used to explain Christianity in Ireland by saying the leaves illustrated the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit of the Holy Trinity. Never mind that Celtic druids had revered the sacred shamrock and its three leaves long before Patrick"s arrival. Coins depicting St. Patrick with a shamrock date back as far as 1675.
Mar 16, 2022
There"s just something comforting about giant pandas. They"re stoic but look cuddly, and their unusual black and white markings make them distinctive. Pandas are one of the animals we recognize from an early age. But while we may take them for granted, they"ve been under threat from shrinking habitats and food supply as people harvest bamboo and build roads and train tracks through their forests. National Panda Day on March 16 spreads awareness about these beloved bears and encourages us to safeguard their future.
Mar 15, 2022
Beware the Ides of March
We"re at the Roman Forum for the Ides of March, a date made famous as the time of Julius Caesar"s assassination. According to the ancient historian Plutarch, Caesar had been warned by a seer that his life would be in danger no later than the Ides of March, something that William Shakespeare dramatizes in his famous tragedy of Caesar’s life and assassination. While historical fact and fiction can diverge, we do know that before March 15, 44 BCE was over, a group of senators had intercepted Caesar here in the Forum as Caesar was on his way to the Senate House. They stabbed him 23 times, killing him. Afterward, Rome descended into civil war, ending the Roman Republic, and leading to the rise of the Roman Empire.
Mar 14, 2022
Did Neolithic humans build this structure to celebrate Pi Day? Not likely. Pi Day is a relatively recent phenomenon—invented by a physicist in 1988 and designated by Congress a national holiday in 2009. But it"s already almost certainly the most popular holiday celebrating a mathematical constant. While Pi Day is a young tradition, the number π (pi) itself has been a fascination since antiquity, when it was first calculated as the ratio of a circle"s circumference to its diameter.
Mar 13, 2022
Daylight saving time
Just like the European hare, we get a little more hop in our steps this time of year—and a bit more daylight as well. It"s the second Sunday of March, when most Americans and Canadians "spring forward," setting their clocks ahead one hour in observance of daylight saving time (DST). Then on the first Sunday of November, we"ll "fall back" by turning our clocks back an hour.
Mar 12, 2022
The Girl Scouts celebrate 110 years
Today we"re celebrating 110 years of the Girl Scouts! Sure, we enjoy their cookies every year, but with so much history behind the organization, the Girl Scouts deserve merit badges for more than just the Thin Mint. On March 12, 1912, founder Juliette Gordon Low brought an outfit called the Girl Guides stateside from England after befriending the founder of the scouting movement there. The first American troop had 18 girls participating. Low designed activities to allow girls to serve their communities, experience the outdoors, and develop self-reliance and resourcefulness. Those skills would be useful on the camping expedition seen in today"s photo. These girls can be seen along the shore of Todd Lake at the Deschutes National Forest in Oregon in 1960.
Mar 11, 2022
We stand with Ukraine
Ukraine grows so many sunflowers they"ve become regarded as the country"s national flower—and recently, as a symbol of resistance. Just like sunflowers standing tall against a blue sky, the people of Ukraine are holding strong while an unlawful invasion threatens their democracy. As Ukrainians battle for their nation"s existence, millions of people have been forced to flee their homes to an uncertain future.
Mar 10, 2022
Between the metropolis of Milan—the fashion and design capital of Italy—and the fabled seaport city of Genoa, you"ll find this small river town in northern Italy. People have resided here since ancient times, at least as far back as the Roman era, but the town really began to flourish when the abbey was constructed in the 7th century. For much of the Middle Ages, the Bobbio Abbey and its vast library made the town a center of religion, culture, and learning.
Mar 9, 2022
Flower of Life symbol drawn in snow
German artist Michael Uy created this "Flower of Life" geometric pattern in the snow in Brandenburg. Preparations began about a week before the snow"s arrival, when Uy hammered 19 wooden posts into a field, carefully measuring the space between each post. After the snowfall, he walked near-perfect circles around all 19 pillars, using a string to keep an equal distance from the posts. The artist then used a broom to further remove the snow from his footprints and reveal the lines of the flower nearly 200 feet across. Uy"s piece was fully visible only when the sun was low. And only until the next snow or warm day. Luckily, a drone was dispatched to snap this photograph.
Mar 8, 2022
International Women s Day
This famous feisty girl stands her ground in front of the New York Stock Exchange in lower Manhattan, a striking reminder as we celebrate International Women"s Day that we still have work to do in the quest for gender equality. Kristen Visbal"s bronze sculpture "Fearless Girl" took up her power pose in 2017 facing down the iconic Wall Street bronze statue called "Charging Bull." For the 2021 observance of International Women"s Day, the corporate sponsor of "Fearless Girl" added broken glass around her, with a plaque that read: "Today"s broken glass ceilings are tomorrow"s stepping stones."
Mar 7, 2022
Lake Tekapo, New Zealand
Here on New Zealand"s rugged South Island, the waters of Lake Tekapo display such striking electric-blue colors because of glacial silt flowing into the lake, carried by the braided Godley and Macauley Rivers, seen at the bottom of our image. These rivers are themselves fed by the melted waters of glaciers in the nearby Southern Alps. As these active glaciers slowly bulldoze the mountainsides, they pulverize rocks along valley floors and walls. All that grinding eventually produces a fine-grained powder of silt, sometimes called glacial flour. Meltwater picks up the silt, carrying it downstream and into lakes like Tekapo. The particles are so light and fine, they"re slow to sink to the bottom, remaining suspended in the water column instead.
Mar 6, 2022
Great cormorants are among the great anglers of the avian world. Found in Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, and North America, they"re expert at diving under the water"s surface to catch bottom-dwelling fish.
Mar 5, 2022
Rising majestically out of the bay, Mont-Saint-Michel is once again a true island, at least during high tides. A crude, elevated causeway built in the 19th century once connected Mont-Saint-Michel to the mainland, allowing visitors to walk across to the spectacular rock. But in 2014, the causeway was removed and replaced by an elegant, curving bridge above the tidal flats. Now water flows freely around the monument at high tide, making the tiny island fortress a real island for the first time in more than a century.
Mar 4, 2022
2022 Winter Paralympics
The 2022 Winter Paralympics begins today in Beijing, as the Chinese capital becomes the first city to host both the summer and winter editions of the Paralympic Games. Over the next 10 days, about 600 athletes will compete in 78 different events across six sports—alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, biathlon, snowboarding, para ice hockey, and wheelchair curling. All the events will take place in a strict Covid "bubble" system to ensure safety at the Games.
Mar 3, 2022
World Wildlife Day
Today is World Wildlife Day, the UN-sponsored tribute to efforts that protect the plants and animals that make our world so special. This year"s WWD theme is "recovering key species for ecosystem restoration"—key species like the greater one-horned rhinoceroses you see here in northeastern India"s Kaziranga National Park. These unique creatures have staged a remarkable comeback from the verge of extinction in the early 20th century, when their numbers had dwindled to a precarious low of around 100 animals. But with the concerted efforts of Indian and Nepalese wildlife authorities, the population of greater one-horned rhinos has slowly built back up to around 3,700 today.
Mar 2, 2022
Mount Rainier National Park
Mount Rainier is the crown jewel of its namesake national park, designated March 2, 1899, by President William McKinley. It was just the fifth national park in the United States. Beyond the mountain, the 369-square-mile park also includes valleys, waterfalls, old-growth forest, and pristine alpine meadows famous for summer wildflowers.
Mar 1, 2022
Women s History Month
To celebrate the start of Women"s History Month, our homepage photo features a candid shot of members of the US Army Nurse Corps in 1944. The women are shown in between training exercises while they await deployment to the South Pacific near the end of World War II. At the time, all who served in the Army Nurse Corps were women, and the units were all segregated. And though the need for nurses was urgent, the army had set a quota for just 160 Black nurses. By the end of the war, that number had increased to nearly 500.
Feb 28, 2022
Winter in England s Cotswolds
The Cotswolds region is well known by Brits as a sleepy summer getaway, a day-trip destination for rambling through rolling pastures and charming villages while sampling delicious local produce. But in winter, this rural landscape takes on a new character when snows blanket the countryside.
Feb 27, 2022
International Polar Bear Day
Today we celebrate International Polar Bear Day to spotlight efforts that protect these charismatic but vulnerable animals. Perhaps no other creature is as emblematic of climate change as polar bears, the apex predator of the Arctic. As the planet warms, their fragile habitat shrinks.
Feb 26, 2022
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve
Think of this special spot as the place where two different Alaskas meet—its vast icy north and its verdant maritime south. Glacier Bay is named for this area"s dominant feature, the rivers of ice that carve the landscape and periodically calve icebergs into the sea. On February 26, 1925, President Calvin Coolidge declared much of the land around the bay a national monument. The protected area was greatly expanded in 1980, when a 3.3-million-acre expanse of glaciers, fjords, rainforest, coastline, and mountain peaks was named a national park and preserve.
Feb 25, 2022
Legacy mural in Philadelphia
As Black History Month winds down, we"ve come to the City of Brotherly Love—Philadelphia—to admire this stunning mural, "Legacy," painted by Josh Sarantitis and Eric Okdeh. Measuring nearly 10,000 square feet, the mural in Philadelphia"s Central City District explores the work of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass to end slavery. Students and staff at five public schools, together with dozens of other individuals, collaborated to produce the artwork, hand-laying over 1 million small glass titles on the mural’s right side. The main figure is a girl holding a medallion surrounded by blue flames. The girl"s middle-aged self rises out of these flames, a symbol of defiance and freedom.