Along the Air Line... 2020 - Spring, Part 8
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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April 14th. Yesterday was a day of heavy rain, powerful wind gusts, and power outages.

 

 

Remarkably, this is the first of only two downed trees between Route 85 and Old Colchester Road.

 

 

This is the second one. I cleaned up plenty of smaller branches and twigs in the wooded sections.

 

 

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) none the worse for the storm.

 

 

 

 

 

Water was as high as I've seen it in years.

 

 

 

 

 

Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) seemed disoriented.

 

 

Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris) motoring along as usual.

 

 

 

 

 

Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)...

 

 

...and a second one nearby.

 

 

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia).

 

 

Raymond Brook was roaring under Old Colchester Road.

 

 

I think the same Song Sparrow, now perched high as I started my walk back.

 

 

Then a short walk east from Route 207. Raymond Brook roaring there too at the pond exit.

 

 

Ring-necked Ducks there seemed unfazed...

 

 

...as was this Canada Goose (Branta canadensis). I didn't see its mate. On a nest maybe?

 

 

Black-capped Chicadee (Poecile atricapilla) going about business as usual.

 

 

April 16th. Just west of Cook Hill Road in Lebanon. Spring-beauty (Claytonia virginica)...

 

 

...just starting to open as I arrived at temps in the 40s.

 

 

 

 

 

By the time I finished my walk, some were fully open.

 

 

 

 

 

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) about to open for the day.

 

 

Crossing east of Cook Hill Road, a flowering tree at the old dairy farm.

 

 

Look closely at the top of the silo.

 

 

Domestic Pigeons (Columba livia domestica)! They were swooping in and out of the silo's vent behind them.

 

 

I'm almost certain this is Dog Violet (Viola labradorica)...

 

 

...because of the long spur behind the upper petals and the hairs on the side petals.

 

 

 

 

 

Purple Trillium (Trillium erectum) coming along.

 

 

Toothwort (Dentaria diphylla) in bud.

 

 

Marsh-marigold (Caltha palustris).

 

 

 

 

 

My first Spring Azure (Celastrina ladon) of the year.

 

 

Just a hint of the brilliant Tyndall blue structural color of the upper wing surfaces.

 

 

Dandelions (Taraxacum officinalis) were in their glory, providing pollen...

 

 

...for solitary bees...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

...and Syrphid Flower Flies (Family Syrphidae). Dorsal gap between the eyes marks this as a female.

 

 

April 17th. A chilly 26 degrees at the marsh.

 

 

Four male Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) circled several times before landing, quacking the whole time.

 

 

Quacks continued as they paraded by.

 

 

 

 

 

One flew off.

 

 

 

 

 

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia) on the same perch where I photographed him a few days ago.