Along the Air Line... 2012 - Spring, Part 13
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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June 15th. "Along the Air Line..." took a three day vacation to Nantucket, boarding the HyLine fast ferry in Hayannis, MA.



Twin engines and a catamaran twin hull to match.  It was fast!



What a change.






Gray Seal!  (Halichoerus grypus)



This one was eating a flounder.



Very curious.



Fiddler Crabs (Uca pugilator) by the hundreds, if not thousands.



Sand Spurrey, probably the native, coastal species (Spergularia marina) with fleshy leaves.



One of several Spider Wasps (correct me if I'm wrong) I saw in the sand.



I saw several Tiger Beetles (Cicindela repanda), and the burrows of their larvae along the beach just below Sankety Light on the eastern end of the Island..






Sankaty Head Lighthouse.  Great views from there.



June 18th.  Back to Raymond Brook Marsh.  Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius).



Spooked, it flew a short distance...



...and perched again.



Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) "Mom" and ten ducklings.






Comon Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) has just begun to bloom.



Give it a sniff; the scent is great.






Pickerelweed (Pontederia cordata) is also blooming.



Elderberry or American Elder (Sambucus canadensis).






Roses are still blooming and very fragrant.



Berries of Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) are full size, but not ripe.



Hop Clover (Trifolium agrarium).






Note the white rectangle and adjacent feeding damage on this Ironwood leaf.



A blanket of silk protects a microlepidopteran caterpillar.  It exits its bed to feed.



June 19th.  Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura).



A terrible photo of an infrequently seen Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea).  In nearly 11 years on the trail, this is only the third one I've seen (and, believe it or not, the best photo I've gotten).



Northern Water Snake (Nerodia sipedon).



Chicory (Cichorium intybus); a morning bloomer at the Route 207 trail crossing.  By afternoon, the blossoms fade to white.



June 20th. The Eastern Kingbird pair were kept busy, chasing off Red-winged Blackbirds that approached the nest.