Along the Air Line... 2010 - Spring, Part 5
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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Stan Malcolm Photo

 

 

April 7th. A sunny dawn with a high of 87 degrees predicted.

 

 

A Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chironomid Midges (Family Chironomidae) have been emerging from the marsh in swarms on the past several mornings.

 

 

Superficially mosquito-like, these Midges do not feed as adults, much less take blood meals from us.

 

 

 

 

 

A new beaver lodge is under construction.

 

 

An early afternoon walk on the Lebanon section of the trail, west of Leonard Bridge Road.  Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus) foliage.

 

 

Growing with Skunk Cabbage and easily confused with it was False Hellebore (Veratrum viride).

 

 

 

 

 

Wood Anemone (Anenome quinquefolia) is blooming already...

 

 

...as is Trout-lily (Erythronium americanum).

 

 

Trout-lily is easily identified by its mottled leaves.

 

 

An American Toad (Bufo americanus).

 

 

Scouring Rush (Equisetum sp.), a horsetail.

 

 

 

 

 

Bumble Bee queens were active in their burrows on a mossy bank amid tree roots just west of Leonard Bridge Road. A burrow entrance is dead center in this photo.

 

 

A sunny entrance to the cool moist burrow beyond.  Missing from my photos is the queen bee herself.  After watching her enter the burrow, I gave up after a half hour waiting for her to emerge.

 

 

April 8th. Continuing my explorations of the Lebanon section, east of Route 87 I found Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustris) in bloom.

 

 

 

 

 

April 10th. Serviceberry, also called Shadbush (Amelanchier arborea) is blooming in Raymond Brook Marsh.

 

 

 

 

 

April 11th. Ornamental Forsythia at the Route 85 trail head.

 

 

A non-biting Chironomid Midge on a Forsythia blossom.

 

 

 

 

 

And a Ladybird Beetle (Family Coccinelidae) sheltering inside a Forsythia blossom.

 

 

Ornamental Daffodils are also blooming at the trail head.

 

 

 

 

 

Invasive Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata).

 

 

 

 

 

Chokecherry (Prunus virginiana) leaves are unfurling.

 

 

(I haven't figured out these seed heads yet.)

 

 

Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron radicans) leaves are still tiny, but loaded with blistering oil.