early June, I've kept in mind that it was Luna Moth (Actias luna)
season. They overwinter in silken cocoons that fall with the leaves
in autumn, hatching in late may or early June. I believe we have two
broods per year in Connecticut, the second one hatching in mid-summer.
Further north, the season is too short and there is only a single
several weeks actively searching, today (June 13th) I finally found
a newly hatched adult.
it wasn't as obvious as in the picture above. The moth was on the
underside of a large leaf, just a few inches above the ground. I was
very lucky to spot it.
moths live only long enough to mate - assuming the birds don't get
them first. In fact, their mouthparts are vestigial. Body fat stored
up in the caterpillar stage sustains them through the winter and the
brief adult phase.
plumes of the antennae confirm that this is a male.
Water Lilies (Nymphaea odorata) are in bloom. In a month or
two, they'll carpet Raymond Brook Marsh, occluding the yellow Pond
Lilies (Nuphar lutea) that have graced the surface since late
(Pontederia cordata) gives an Oriental feel in this view.
colors are revealed with a polarizing filter. Flowers in blue spikes
will appear later in the season.
moth (family Geometridae). A rough translation of the Latin is earth-measure...
a reference to the caterpillars which we know as inchworms or measuring
worms. This one is Scopula limboundata, with the common name
of "large lace-border".
female Red-Winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) appeared
to walk on water. Actually it hopped from lily pad to lily pad, picking
off bugs from leaves and flowers - even turning over the edges of
the pads to find bugs underneath.
(Pontederia cordata) again.
Rufous-Sided Towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus).
Ferns (Osmunda regalis) - looking down from the bridge over
the Jeremy River.
maples. (Funny how some pages take on a theme, though unintended on
my part. This page seems to have an oriental flavor.)
Day (June 16th) and my son Ian (Homo sapiens - sorry, I couldn't
resist) joined me on my walk.
incredibly efficient at snake spotting. He counted nine. This is a
Northern Water Snake (Natrix sipedon sipedon), common at the
margins of Raymond Brook Marsh.
is probably an Eastern Ribbon Snake (Thamnophis sauritis),
a member of the Garter Snake group.
been trying to get a decent picture of a Great Blue Heron (Ardea
herodias) since they first returned to the Raymond Brook Marsh
in April. This shot will have to do for now. An impressive bird with
its six foot wingspan.
the enormous size of the heron with this yellow warbler on its nest.
(Penstemon sp.) in the Snapdragon family (Scrophulariaceae).
Loosestrife (Lysimachia quadrifolia).
Fern (Osmunda cinnamonea) which grows three to five feet tall.
Note the central cinnamon-colored fertile frond which bears the spores.
on June 18th. I decided to pay another brief visit to the trail.
it for June. (The family is off on vacation until the end of the month.)
Lots of plants are in bud now, such as Milkweed and Spotted Wintergreen,
that should be in flower by the time I return.