Along the Air Line... 2002 - October, Part 1
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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As October begins, the Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) seem to be practicing for their journey south.

This Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) called out to me from overhead, and
mumbled under its breath after I took its picture.

The Blue Jays (Cyanocitta cristata) have seemed more active along the trail lately.

A Sparrow I presume, but I'll leave it to the experts to determine which one.
My wife, Julie, refers to these as LBBs, or Little Brown Birds.

Fall colors are still in their early stages. (I'm writing this on October 8th.) Naturally the Red (or Swamp) Maples (Acer rubrum) were among the first to turn.

Sumacs (Rhus sp.) have turned as well.

As has Poison Ivy (Rhus radicans).

This is Euonymus alatus, an escaped ornamental shrub called Winged Euonymus, Cork Bush, or Burning Bush. A related native species of Burning Bush has "Wahoo" as another common name.

The yellow fruits of Bittersweet (Celastris scandens) have finally split to
reveal the red pulp covering the seeds inside.

Here the Bittersweet vines twine around each other, lending mutual support as they reach to the canopy of trees above.

Take a moment to figure out this next picture. Yes, it's right side up.

A Box Turtle (Terrapene carolina). For perhaps twenty years, my parents kept one as a pet in their NYC garden. They fed it raw hamburger and, from time to time, the large caterpillars of the Ailanthus Silk Moth (or Cynthia Moth).

Mushrooms continue to prosper in the cool damp weather. I'll guess that those in the first picture are in the genus Pholiota. I'm open to suggestions on the others.

A sunset...

...and a sunrise.

Visible from the main trail, this smokestack is about all that remains of a factory that once stood along the spur line leading to Colchester. Learn more about United Distillers.

Below, the same smokestack emerges from the early morning mist.