Along the Air Line... 2018-2019 - Winter, Part 6
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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January 31st.  Two below zero.  I opted to walk later so these pre-dawn photos are from my yard (but would have looked the same from the trail).  Venus to the lower left, crescent moon, and a barely visible Jupiter at the upper right.

 

 

 

 

 

Late morning.  Six above zero.  Snow squalls last evening left a thin coating.

 

 

 

 

 

Mine were the only human footprints.

 

 

In several places, I saw unaccompanied canid prints like this.

 

 

These led out into the marsh.  Coyote is my best guess.

 

 

Small mammal tracks around too.  I'm guessing Chipmunk size, though I'd be surprised to see one out and about in this cold.  Chipmunks spend much of the winter underground in torpor.

 

 

Looks to me like it hopped, but I see no signs of a tail drag as you might see with a mouse or vole.

 

 

At the western end of the marsh, I saw and heard a Kingfisher but couldn't manage a photo.  I also heard an owl and tried returning its calls, hoping to draw it closer.  No luck, though we had a duet for awhile.

 

 

A few "artsie" shots, manipulated in software.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

February 1st. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lots more footprints than when I walked the trail yesterday.  Even at 5 degrees this morning, I passed five other people before 8 A.M.

 

 

February 2nd.  Five degrees.  Too late for the colorful pre-dawn, but still some interesting clouds, plus contrails.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

February 4th.  High twenties felt warm. 

 

 

 

 

 

Female Belted Kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon).  Trail surface re-frozen but much of the ice crust was gone.

 

 

February 5th.  Fog lifting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Facing the sunshine side.