Along the Air Line... 2009 - Spring, Part 7
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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May 14th. Overcast with showers likely later.



This weather enhances the spring greens of new foliage.



May 18th. Pink Azalea or Pinxter Flower (Rhododendron periclymenoides).






Pink Lady's Slipper Orchids (Cypripedium acaule) are in full bloom now.












This close view reveals a pearl-like yellow "pollinium" or pollen ball which must be transfered to another flower for seeds to be set.



Golden Alexanders (Zizia aurea).



Yellow Warblers (Dendroica petechia) nest in low shrubs near the trail where they are frequently distrubed by passers-by. The nest seems to be lined with hair.



May 20th. Well camouflaged, the female Yellow Warbler broods her eggs.



A male Red-Winged Blackbird trying to impress a female.



A female Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) with a large brood feeding among the water plants.






Spread out, I count twelve ducklings.



In open water, they rush to catch up to Mom.



All those paddling little feet create quite a wake.






Three White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginanus) on the trail this morning.






May 21st The Yellow Warbler again.






First Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina) I've seen this year; a small one: carapace maybe 4" long.






Bracken Fern (Pteridium aquilinum).






Sensitive Fern (Onoclea sensibilis).



Wild Geranium or Crane's Bill (Geranium maculatum).






An immature male Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) flitting from lily pad to lily pad, searching for bugs.



A Beaver (Castor canadensis) feasting on Pond Lily flowers.



Wild Grapes (Vitus sp.) are in bud.



Can't get enough of the Lady's-Slipper Orchids.