Current Journal


Nature of New England                           


Nature Journal

Notes about birds, mammals, wildflowers, insects, and more
Friday, September 6, 2002
View of mountainsWe've been having some nice cool, crisp days lately - more like fall weather.

The view of the mountains has been clear and very pretty in the mornings.
Click to enlarge      
Saturday, September 7, 2002
Am seeing the wild turkeys almost every day now. It looks like there are two hens and 4 or 5 juveniles - but I may not have seen them all. The juveniles are pretty small for this time of year. Usually, by this time, the young ones are almost the same size as their mother.

In past years, I've only seen groups with a single hen and 9 to 13 young ones. Maybe a fox got some of the chicks this year?
Sunday, September 8, 2002
Barred OwlHave been hearing the barred owls quite a bit over the past 5 days or so. Mostly during the night.

On one recent night, there were two barred owls near the house calling to each other with monkey-like sounds --
a combination of the "monkey call"  Photo © Mike Danzenbaker
and "wail" that can be heard here. Click to enlarge
Monday, September 9, 2002

The sound of the snowy tree crickets was beautiful last night. The temperature was about 60 degrees and the crickets sounded like tiny sleigh bells ringing.

Check out these sounds. Something between the "warm song" and the "cool song" is what they sounded like last night - except imagine hundreds (thousands?) of them at the same time.

Tuesday, September 10, 2002
Beginning of fall foliageA few leaves on some trees began changing color around the first of the month, which is earlier than usual.

A very few entire trees are showing their fall foliage - like this one I took a picture of today.
Wednesday, September 11, 2002
This morning I saw some spots where the whitetail deer have been bedding down in the weeds and brambles - about 20 feet to the south of the house. I saw one larger bed and two smaller ones.

I assume the larger bedding spot is from the doe that I often see around my house. And the smaller ones could either be from two fawns - or from the same fawn bedding on two separate occasions. The doe is fairly young, so that makes me think she might have only one fawn. Could be wrong, though.
Thursday, September 12, 2002
New England Asters
The New England Asters are blooming. They are so beautiful! I love the deep purple color of this wildflower!

The lance-leaved goldenrod, the zigzag goldenrod, and the white wood asters are also still blooming, along with a few remaining red clovers.
Click to enlarge    
Friday, September 13, 2002
Saw a moose to the north of my house late yesterday afternoon. That was really exciting! I watched it for a while from my back steps - it was about 75 feet away. Then it moved out of sight, although I could still hear it crashing around in the underbrush.

I drove down the driveway and got a closer look at it (hoping to get a photo). Then decided that it might not be good idea to get quite so close. This is the beginning of rutting season for the moose, so they are traveling outside their usual areas in search of mates.

Although normally docile, the bull moose can be unpredictable and even aggressive during the rut. Here's some information about how to avoid confrontations with moose.
Saturday, September 14, 2002
Staghorn SumacI recently heard a catbird and a cardinal down near the field. Then I spotted them in a nearby staghorn sumac tree with ripened fruit.

The cardinal would flick its tail and call "chip, chip, chip...". Then the catbird would flick ITS tail and do its cat-like call. Back and forth they went.

I can only guess that the conversation had something to do with who had first dibs on the sumac fruit.
Sunday, September 15, 2002
Found a great website with photos of birds' eggs. Try this page for bird families found in Alberta, Canada (you will see many New England birds on this list). Click any egg to see a photo of the bird and read about the color, size, and shape of the egg. Or try this page for eggs from birds all over the word. Great photos!
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