I knew it was going to be a great day when we spotted bobcat tracks before we even got to the trail! Plus a river otter slide as we crossed the bridge. Then, 10 feet in, we saw great tracks of a porcupine going from a hemlock tree to its den in a culvert. Over the course of the morning, we saw Deer, turkey, bobcat, and coyote tracks! And the weather was just stunning! Thanks everyone for a great hike! It was sponsored by Kestrel Land Trust. Below are some pictures, click on them to enlarge:
I had the pleasure of taking some great hikers up into the Sawmill Hills of Florence, Massachusetts over the weekend. We had a lot of fun! The weather was incredible and the Hills never disappoint! The vernal pools were dry as a bone, waiting or the fall rains and the spring runoff to once again fill up with water and become the wonderfully productive breeding pools for many organisms. Many people on the hike shared that they never saw a fairy shrimp or wood frog.
So, I pulled together some footage I have. Part of it was the amazing wood frog migration I ran into last spring at Mount Tom. If you remember, we had a cold, cold winter that lasted well into April. Well on the first sunny warm day, all, I mean all, the wood frogs on Mt. Tom warmed up and hopped to the vernal pool. There was still ice and snow on the ground but that didn’t stop them!:
Here’s a music video I created a while back, vernal pools are just so awe-inspiring to me:
Oh by the way, visit my new photographic store on etsy: Click Here!
I ran into my friend Tom Gagnon at the Northampton Community Gardens as he was leading a Butterfly Walk sponsored by the Arcadia Sanctuary of Mass Audubon. So I tagged along since any time out in the field with Tom is a wonderful trip! And gosh were the butterlies a flyin’! Remember, to enlarge the picture, just click on it.
I had the pleasure of going out looking for Dragonflies with naturalist Josh Rose as part of a Kestrel Land Trust Walk and Talk. We had a wonderful time, loads of great critters to see and Josh was just marvelous as a guide! Take a look at his great shirt, “Stay Calm…and let the Entomologist handle it”
Here’s some pictures too. If you want to examine them more closely, just click on them to expand:
I had the pleasure of going on a butterfly walk with one of the best butterfliers around, and by around I mean the country! Tom Gagnon took us out on the Bullit Reservation, part of the Trustees of Reservations. Ah the butterflies we saw were amazing! Here’s a tawny edged skipper drinking nectar with its proboscis:
and a mother spider with her young:
Here are some pictures as well, remember, click on them to enlarge:
Hello everyone, Sorry I haven’t posted in a while. I’ve been out in the field gathering footage for my new web series, The Nature Nerds. The first one will be on Vernal Pools with Brandon Abbott and Molly Hale as the guest Nature Nerds! I’m in the editing process right now but I had to post some of my pictures and video of the Peregrine fledglings at the Calvin Coolidge Bridge (My next Nature Nerds is Falcons of the Connecticut River Valley). They’re still calling for their parents to feed them and they’re very active at times, flying all over the place, hanging out on the bridge structures, sitting above bicyclists on the bike path bridge. In colonial times, they were known as duck hawks because of their size but I may have another reason, I got film footage of a fledgling taking a swim in the Connecticut!
Click on the pics to enlarge:
Well instead of a quick nibbly at Panera, my friend Ann and I went to the small watering hole across from the horse barns at UMass to see a group of Northern Shovelers. I’ve never seen them before. Wow. They are named appropriately, their bills are huge! They could have helped me shovel all the snow this winter! It looks like they’re just passing through to the north central states and Western Canada to breed. These dabbling ducks are sometimes referred to as spoonbill or “spoony” because of the large spatula-like bill. It has over a 100 projections called lamellae along the edges to strain the water for food particles.
And then, right across the road were a huge number of killdear and wilson snipes! I thought there were only three but in watching the video afterwards, there were four plus a couple in the foreground. Yahooo!
Here’s some video I took of the shovelers and snipes. See if you can find the snipes in the foreground early in the video!
That was part of a song I learned while sitting through my sister’s Bluebird troop- The Bear went over the Mountain, the bear went over the Mountain. The Bear went over the Mountain…to see what he could see….
Northampton Cafe’s were filled yesterday, pedestrians were all over the city, smiling, talking, sitting on steps soaking up the warmth of the sun while enjoying a croissant from their favorite bakery . There was someone else who came out of hibernation yesterday as well!
Yep, the black bears are back!
Its been a pretty tough winter. Long stretches of temps below zero at nights and getting to, maybe 10 degrees during the day and lots, I mean lots of snow! Now its March 12th and finally we actually had a day over 50 degrees (glorious) and a night time low of only 39 degrees. We still have at least a foot and a half of snow on the ground but I picked up a new track in my backyard…click on the picture to enlarge it.