Along the Air Line... 2021-2022 - Winter, Part 5
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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February 6th. Two days after rain followed by cold and light snow, the trail remains an icy mess.



Anywhere in shade was like this. Sunny areas had mud from surface thawing.



























February 8th. At about 40 degrees, a lot of melting going on...



...but a lot of ice remains. Cleats a good idea.



The "meringue" snow people have melted.



Looks a bit like a tropical fish?



February 10th. This is the trail crossing at River Road. Every time I see this lousy excuse for a trail surface I get upset. Mud when wet. Dusty with dry.



Nice to see a little open water there. (And I think I saw a Honey Bee (Apis mellifera) buzz past me at 51 degrees.



I stood watching this very dead tree after I noticed an Eastern Grey Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis)...



...carrying dry oak leaves up to...



...a nest site in the hollow top...












...then heading down to gather another mouthfull of leaves.






Back up the tree... make another deposit.






A quick look around...



...and back down again.



I figure the vines offer a bit of camouflage and an obstacle for raptor talons.



I watched about half a dozen round trips in all.



February 11th. A male yellow-shafted Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus). Formidable beak.






February 12th. Charles Darwin's birthday. Born 1809.



Most of the snow and ice is finally gone... but snow showers expected tomorrow.






Good looking Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis).






Lots of male Red-winged Blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) calling. First I've seen this year at the marsh.


















Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapilla).



With some open water on the (north) channel side, a pair of Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos).






And they're off!



February 16th. Low 40s at mid afternoon. Some soft ice. Surface puddled and muddy.






Pussy Willows (Salix discolor) starting to open.



American Robin (Turdus migratorius), one of about ten traveling together.



Winter Stonefly (Allocapnia sp.). Often seen on snow near streams when there's a breeze at temps a bit above freezing.