Along the Air Line... 2015 - Spring, Part 11
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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Stan Malcolm Photo

 

 

June 5th.  Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium sp.) in the Iris family.

 

 

 

 

 

Spreading Dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium) blossoms are opening.

 

 

Multiflora Roses (Rosa multiflora) are opening and spreading their fragrance.

 

 

A Mustard (Probably Brassica sp.).

 

 

Northern Bush-honeysuckle (Diervilla lonicera).

 

 

Northern Arrowwood (Viburnum recognitum).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grape (Vitus sp.) flowers are opening.

 

 

The Yellow Warbler (Dendroica petechia) chicks are developing fast.

 

 

Eyes are proportionally smaller and not bulging; the light-colored down on their heads is nearly gone...

 

 

...and wing feathers are coming in.

 

 

It isn't often that I see a Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta) swimming.

 

 

Three Forest Tent caterpillars (Malacosoma disstria) lined up head-tail-head.

 

 

A young Oak leaf.

 

 

The female Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) was off her nest, leading me to think perhaps the goslings were hatching.

 

 

No such luck, though they're due any day now.  Lots of neck bending to groom.

 

 

 

 

 

The eggs aren't on the nest surface as I'd assumed they would be.  Instead, they're covered in stems and down.

 

 

Eventually she returned to the nest and settled down very carefully, wriggling to fluff her feathers around the eggs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The last step was to use her beak to pull the nest margins close to her as you'll see in the video below.

 

 

 

 

 

June 6th.  High-bush Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) are developing, but still have a long way to go.

 

 

The developing vine of Carrion-flower (Smilax herbacea).

 

 

Carrion-flower (Smilax herbacea) buds.

 

 

Carrion-flower (Smilax herbacea) flowers.

 

 

After yesterday's excitment (for me), thinking the goslings might be hatching, the Canada Goose is back to her patient incubation.

 

 

The Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius) in deep water again.

 

 

June 7th. 45 degrees at 7:00 A.M..  The male Canada Goose not far from the nest.  Does that mean there's some action?

 

 

In a word, no.  Mom still incubating.

 

 

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius) atop a Wood Duck house.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hop Clover (Trifolium agrarium).

 

 

Bastard Toadflax (Comandra umbellata).

 

 

 

 

 

A Grass in flower, wet with dew.

 

 

I think this is the penultimate instar of the Dowdy Pinion (Lithophane unimoda), though several other caterpillars are similar.

 

 

Pearl Crescent (Phyciodes tharos).

 

 

June 8th.  Two White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus) across the marsh this morning.

 

 

 

 

 

A small flock of Cedar Waxwings (Bombycilla cedrorum) feeding on unripe Serviceberry fruits.

 

 

 

 

 

June 9th.  The small flock of Cedar Waxwings (Bombycilla cedrorum) was back this morning.

 

 

 

 

 

A female Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina) crossed the trail looking for a spot to lay her eggs.

 

 

Reared up in defensive posture, she gradually turned to face me.

 

 

 

 

 

Multiflora Roses (Rosa multiflora) are full out now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pasture Roses (Rosa carolina) started blooming a couple of days ago.

 

 

 

 

 

Off the nest when I first passed by, the Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) was back a short while later.

 

 

Mid-afternoon and I think I'm getting the raspberry (or gooseberry).  More likely, she was getting hot and "panting" to cool off.

 

 

Grooming.  Then...

 

 

...she stood up to groom her belly.

 

 

What's that I see?

 

 

At least two eggs!