Along the Air Line... 2019 - Spring, Part 5
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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April 18th. Eastern Tent Caterpillars (Malacosoma americana) have just hatched and are starting to build their web shelters on cherry trees.

 

 

The caterpillars are no more than 5mm long, but that will soon change.

 

 

Spicebush (Lindera benzoin).

 

 

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius) perched far across the marsh.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A second Great Blue Heron, not far away from the first one. Both flew off.

 

 

April 19th. Red Maple (Acer rubrum) blossoms are fading as seeds develop and leaves begin to break from buds.

 

 

Called polynoses where I grew up, but with many other common names like whirligigs, whirlibirds, and helicopters...

 

 

...the technical term for this winged seed type is a samara (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samara_(fruit)). Not only can they be thrown up in the air to watch them spiral down; they can be split at the seed end and pinched onto your nose.

 

 

An afternoon walk west of River Road to see Trailing Arbutus (Epigaea repens) in bloom.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fiddleheads.

 

 

April 21st. Light rain. A lone male Wood Duck (Aix sponsa) far out in the marsh.

 

 

 

 

 

Just one pair of Ring-necked Ducks (Aythya collaris) out in the rain.