January 5, 2003
last storm brought 22 additional inches of snow! Here's an apt quote
from Thoreau's Walden:
"For many years I was the self-appointed inspector of snowstorms
and rain-storms, and did my duty faithfully."
And one from John Muir:
"I began to look forward with delight to the approaching winter
with its wondrous storms, when I would be warmly snow-bound in my
Yosemite cabin with plenty of bread and books."
much enjoy watching snowstorms from the warmth of my house, especially
when those big fluffy flakes are coming down. One wonders if Thoreau
did his "inspecting" from inside his cabin or outside?
January 4, 2003
a scene from one of my recent walks in the woods. In the center is
a group of paper birch trees growing close together. And you can see
the branches of some nearby hemlocks.
Many different birds nest in paper birches, including chickadees,
nuthatches, and some species of woodpeckers.
seeds of this tree also provide food
for the birds, especially redpolls,
pine siskins, and the black-capped
January 3, 2003
snowing again today and we're expecting it to be quite a big storm.
That got me thinking about spring and wildflowers.
To brighten your day, here are a couple of photos of some wildflowers
that bloom in the spring - wild
columbines and a red trillium.
January 2, 2003
seen any sign of the red fox lately -
until this morning. The tracks in this photo were not far from my
One of my neighbors saw a red fox recently - maybe the same one whose
tracks we see here.
The adult red fox is generally solitary
until mating season. In New England, mating usually begins in mid-January
continue into early March. The peak
period is the end of January.
January 1, 2003
was excited to see a brown creeper
on an oak tree near my house today. Almost every winter I see one
on that same tree, but there had been no sign of it so far this year.
As I was watching the creeper, I also noticed a hairy
woodpecker and numerous other birds foraging for insects in
that group of deciduous trees.
I've never seen so many birds in that particular area, so I'm guessing
that today must have been an especially good foraging day. The temperature
was about 40 degrees, which may have been a factor.
December 31, 2002
a male evening grosbeak at my
bird feeder today - an unusual sighting for me.
I understand they usually come in flocks - and can clean out your
feeder pretty quickly.
These birds were historically found only in
the northwestern parts of North America. In the mid-1800's, the range
of the evening grosbeak began to expand eastward and southward. Now
their range extends east to the Atlantic.
December 30, 2002
article by the Connecticut Audubon Society. It tells about how
animals spend the winter.
It provides some interesting information about migrators, hibernators,
active animals, and more. I never realized that honeybees are active
during the winter!
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