Along the Air Line... 2019 - Summer, Part 12
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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September 2nd. Tree Swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) on their favorite perch. I hope they're not preparing to head for the coast.

 

 

 

 

 

A short walk east from Cranberry Bog along a stretch of trail under renovation. Bald-faced Hornets' (Dolichovespula maculata) paper nest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The business end.

Interesting Bald-faced Hornet natural history observation here: https://bugtracks.wordpress.com/2019/09/02/something-you-dont-see-every-day/

 

 

Nice to see some Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) back at Cranberry Bog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Horse Balm or Richweed (Collinsonia canadensis).

 

 

It's a mint (Family Lamiaceae), but unlike any other mint I've seen.

 

 

An inchworm caterpillar (Family Geometridae). I won't attept to identify it. The black teardropped shape and grey wound between the second and third pairs of legs may be a parasitoid egg and entrance point.

 

 

 

 

 

Another inchworm. Also beyond my ability to identify.

 

 

September 3rd. River Road. Viscid Violet Cort (Cortinarius iodes) with thanks, as usual, to Terry Stoleson.

 

 

More about the species and a close look-alike here: https://www.mushroomexpert.com/cortinarius_iodes.html (Thanks Heather Campbell for the link.)

 

 

Spotted Knapweed (Centaurea stoebe).

 

 

 

 

 

Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetle (Harmonia axyridis). I don'y know what caused the oval damaged areas on the goldenrod leaves, though I do see discarded legs and perhaps wings of aphids the beetle has eaten.

 

 

A Green Lacewing (Family Chrysopidae, perhaps Chrysopa oculata).

 

 

September 4th. An afternon walk east of Route 207 ahead of storms. A Grasshopper hindwing; left behind after a bird ate the juicy body. These wings are pleated to fold like an old fashioned fan.

 

 

 

 

 

The cap of an enormous Bolete. (The pen is 5" long.)

 

 

Bracket Fungi.

 

 

A large (roughly 4") Millipede (Family Spirobolidae, Narceus americanus-annularis-complex). I often see them crossing this stretch of trail on damp mornings. More often, I see them squashed by bicycles.

 

 

Under the power lines, Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis).

 

 

 

 

 

A single pale pink plant among the normal red ones. I've never seen one like it.

 

 

 

 

 

Water Parsnip (Sium suave) growing in wet soil with the Cardinal Flowers.

 

 

 

 

 

Field Milkwort (Polygala sanguinea).

 

 

Wild Cucumber (Echinocystis lobata) growing over the boulder by the Route 207 parking lot.

 

 

 

 

 

Hops (Humulus lupulus) also growing over the same boulder.

 

 

A male Black-horned Tree Cricket (Oecanthus nigricornis). Unlike its congeners, it lives in low vegetation, not up in the trees.

 

 

September 5th. This Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) was one of the very few birds I saw today. No Tree Swallows. Are they gone? Come to think of it, I haven't seen Red-winged Blackbirds in awhile.

 

 

Closed Gentian (Gentiana andrewsii).

 

 

 

 

 

On August 31st, I posted photos of Goldenrod Bud Galls. The tephritid fruit flies (Procecidochares atra) that formed them have now emerged as adults, exhibiting their jumping spider mimicry.

 

 

Theie mimicry extends to their behavior: they hop about like the spiders and are very reluctant to fly.

 

 

Nifty eyes.

 

 

Late afternoon by the pond where the trail crosses River Road. Yellow-collared Scape Moth (Cisseps fulvicollis).

 

 

 

 

 

Inchworm (Family Geometridae) on Bushy Aster (Symphyotrichum dumosum).