Along the Air Line... 2018-2019 - Winter, Part 10
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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March 11th.  Sunny afternoon at 50 degrees brought lots of insects out flying and resting on the surface of the snow.

 

 

Flea Beetle (Dysonycha sp.; perhaps D. procera).

 

 

This spider succumbed to the cold.

 

 

 

 

 

Soft gray Tufted Titmouse feather, I think.

 

 

Slightly different settings.

 

 

Hundreds of Midges (Family Chironomidae) flying, wandering over the snow, or in this case mating.  Male at right with feathery antennae.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plenty of Small Winter Stoneflies (Family Capniidae) wandering around.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Turkey-tail (Trametes versicolor).

 

 

The driest portion of the trail.  Shaded and depressed areas were deep in slush or standing water.

 

 

 

 

 

Just one Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus) calling this afternoon.  Note the swollen Red Maple (Acer rubrum) buds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plenty of Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) in the open water, but far from the trail.

 

 

A pair of Hooded Mergansers (Lophodytes cucullatus), very far away and shy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pretty sure I saw a lone Ring-necked Duck male (Aythya collaris) too, but photo not good enough for an ID.

 

 

March 13th.  The pair of Hooded Mergansers (Lophodytes cucullatus) was closer this morning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sure enough, what I saw two days ago was a Ring-necked Duck male (Aythya collaris).

 

 

 

 

 

With the recent switch to daylight savings time, the sun is much lower when I walk.

 

 

March 14th.  First Canada Goose (Branta cvanadensis) I've seen at the marsh this year.

 

 

 

 

 

Nice to hear as well as to see.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two geese and the lone Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris) that has been hanging around.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In addition to the pair of Hooded Mergansers (Lophodytes cucullatus) I've seen lately, I saw four more in flight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My firsrt pair of Wood Ducks (Aix sponsa) this year, though others have seen them for a few days.