Along the Air Line... 2017-2018 - Winter, Part 5
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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Stan Malcolm Photo



February 19th.  Fifty degrees.  I saw several Winter Stoneflies (Family Capniidae, Allocapnia sp.) atop the remaining snow piles near the trail head stream.  Length under 1cm.









The lone Northern Pintail duck (Anas acuta) was still around today.









There he is!



Mallards tolerate him just fine.






February 20th.  A walk east of Route 207 to the pond and source of Raymond Brook.  All but this area remains iced over.



Water is high.



Lots of water coming over and through the beaver dam.









Lichens, mosses, and ferns offer some welcome color.


















February 21st.  An afternoon walk west from Grayville Road to near Old Hartford Road.  Sun and high sixties most of the way. Old stone walls stand out with trees bare.


















The same log a little later when the sun was hitting it obliquely.



A female Carpenter Ant (Camponotus sp.) with a few eggs, active under loose bark of a fallen tree.









Judd Brook falls under the Air Line Trail bridge.









Rock cut east of the Jeremy River.



Oak leaves and strands of algae in the ditch beside the rock cut.



A Clubmoss (Lycopodium sp.).



Haircap Moss (Polytrichum sp.).






Female Wolf Spider (Family Lycosidae).



Partridgeberry (Mitchella repens).



Bark beetle tracks in a downed tree make lovely designs.



Each track starts out narrow where the beetle egg hatched, then grows wider as the larva matures.  The adult beetle burrows out through the bark to fly away.















Green staining of decaying wood is caused by a fungus, Chlorociboria sp.  The stained wood is sometimes used in marquetry.  Learn more about Green Stain here:



Best guess is a Jelly Roll fungus (Exidia sp.).



Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus),



February 22nd.  First pair of Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) I've seen on the marsh this year.



Cheek patches distinctive.  It may be possible to tell if they stick around.