To all those interested in the natural world. Please add your sightings.

In the woods we return to reason and faith-Emerson


Monday, November 29, 2010

These Camel Crickets (AKA Cave Crickets) are among the 75 or so individuals that will overwinter safely in the confines of my spring house. They will endure about 7 months of the 'house arrest' as leaving before spring would be fatal.
These crickets are deaf, wingless, nocturnal and they have no mechanism with which to produce sound. Usually they are found under rocks and rotten logs, or in basements or caves. They have extremely long feelers with which to explore the world.
Camel Crickets are genus Ceuthophilus but according to the Audubon Society Field Guide to No. Amer. Insects and Spiders, "Only a specialist can reliably identify species."

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Common Periwinkle (vinca minor) can be uncommonly hardy, as these flowering today in a sheltered Hague Rd. yard can attest. A few years ago during an unusually warm January we had some flowering in our woods.
Periwinkles are an introduced species; a garden escape growing wild. They are also known as Running Myrtle.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Red Clover, asters and goldenrod can all still be found flowering in sheltered locations.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Black alder (Ilex verticillata) also known as Winterberry and as Christmas Berry brightens the bank of the West River on a recent gray November day.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

With the leaves off the trees it's easier to spot barred owls ... and for the owls to spot us. This one was perched roadside up on the west side of town, watching me intently.
Witch hazel is starting to flower. The flowers will often hold their weirdly twisted petals well into the winter. Seeds will form next spring and the seed capsules will hang on late into next summer.