September 29, 2002
some ravens in the trees outside
my window this morning. Looked out and saw a small flock of them.
Could hear both the call of the adults and the higher-pitched call
of the juveniles. Ravens can be distinguished from crows
by the raven's thicker bill and larger size.
During the fall and winter, hundreds of these birds may roost together
at night. Then, in the daytime hours, the ravens fly in much smaller
groups in search of food. If you're interested in learning more
about this bird's roosting habits, check out this
September 28, 2002
a small maple leaf I found in the woods. Looks like some bugs ate
a few holes in it.
The leaves on the trees are beginning to turn in southern Vermont,
but it will be a little while longer before the fall foliage reaches
Meanwhile, here are some fall
foliage photos from a previous season.
September 27, 2002
the wild turkeys again this afternoon.
First a hen came out of the woods and made a "regrouping"
call. Then 8 younger turkeys followed her out of the woods.
Finally a second hen emerged.
Of the 8 younger turkeys, 2 or 3 were quite a bit smaller. The others
have now grown almost as large as the hens. So it looks like there
are two hens with their broods - one brood being older than the
The juvenile males split off from the family group some time in
the fall and form their own flocks. So this may be why the broods
seem so small. (The hen usually lays 10 to 13 eggs.) Or the hens
may have lost a lot of young ones - or eggs - to predators this
September 26, 2002
this picture of a pickerel frog at my neighbor's house.
This frog is similar in appearance to the northern leopard frog. The
most noticeable difference is that the leopard frog has spots that
are roundish and the pickerel frog has spots that are more squarish
September 25, 2002
acorns have begun dropping off the oak trees. The eastern
chipmunks and squirrels are more
active now as they gather the acorns to store in their underground
The wild turkey, white-tailed
deer and black bear also take advantage
of this nutritious food.
September 24, 2002
saw this beautiful glow in the sky last night as the sun was setting.
Since my house is on the east side of the hill, I can't see the actual
sunset. But sometimes the sky lights up with this pinkish glow. Usually
just to the south, but on some evenings
you can see it in all directions.
September 23, 2002
a good web site about how to learn
bird songs. It lists the mnemonics (words to help you remember)
for the songs and calls of hundreds of birds.
In learning to identify bird songs, sometimes it helps to write down
your own mnemonic while you hear the bird singing. Or draw a graphical
representation of it - for example, draw a line that goes up and down
in the same way that the song does.
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