Monday, August 29, 2011

New Bug in the Neighborhood

Looks like a Pleasing Fungus but I read they don't go north passed Florida.
This is New England. Maybe I'll submit this bug to the bug guy. We have had an incredible number of Mushrooms....
Later that evening.... Just opened my Audubon Field Guide (forgot I had it!) and found the Tomentus Burying Beetle. I think I have a match! 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Heavenly Movements

Still Seeing Small

This summer I've experienced a shift in how I see the world. Maybe it's the wisdom of dog being passed onto me from Morris -- we walk, he sniffs, I wait -- what's in front of one's nose is most important. I am focused on what's in front of me: small insects, mushrooms -- I never thought about mushrooms with such excitement. Suddenly they are appearing everywhere and different kinds, so many that I can barely learn their names. I am in awe of people who study them and --as if I've stepped off a precipace -- I could change my life and devote my time to these resilient little entities. (oh, that picture is a robin's egg, not a blue mushroom. Each time I discovered a mushroom, I run for the camera. But I think: What will I do come winter? I can see myself writing about them, and painting them, but I do not want to make paintings that are cute, quaint. The mushroom is too mysterious and otherworldly. Today I found a group of white mushrooms in the woods and when I took their pictures the pixels glowed around them.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Time of the Butterflies.

Swallowtails, Monarchs, small hummingbirds, all passing by too briefly.

Sunday, July 24, 2011


Injured Baby Raccoon
We've had families of raccoons. This little one must have fallen from the nest because he had a broken pelvis and had been attacked as evidenced by bite marks. A vet took him in but couldn't do anything because he had been attacked. We are ever vigilant about rabies in this state where raccoons are prime carriers. For a few evenings, just after dusk when the raccoon parent probably left the nest to forage, I could see his two siblings in a large knot of a tall, significant oak, rolling their heads around and teetering dangerously close to the edge of their nook like drunken sailors. I just held my breath and silently chanted, "Please don't fall." They didn't. Later, one night there was much fighting in the woods. Horrible shrieks. Such is the hard life of the wild.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Poison Ivy and What's Love Got to Do With It?

Some forms of love are toxic. But some love is especially good and healthy. Poison ivy can be a good and healthy love if you are a bird. There are over sixty types of birds who relish the ivy's berry. Let's not call it poison, let's call it bird ivy and just try to avoid it for ourselves. As for chemicals that kill bird ivy, leave them alone. They really are toxic.
Check out this nice site:
image from wikimedia commons. creative commons license. Foto from Ithaca nature trail (Stilfehler)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


from wikipedia.    Zalipie, Poland (near Tarnow)

Monday, May 30, 2011

Spring Path

 A quiet path strewn with petals makes one cautious and aware that around the bend something small and fragile could be startled. Gold finches, mourning doves, Carolina wrens, and Baltimore orioles, are a few of the backyards visitors. A bumper crop of chipmunks scurries out of every nook and garden cranny.

Snapping Turtle

This day was indeed fruitful for Mr. C., tending to his garden, pruning and weeding, and enjoying a surreptitious cigar. He was the first to find the large, dark turtle by my sister's gate. My sister said, "He's friendly; he doesn't even stick his head in his shell." Then, I rushed off to the internet, my researcher hormones on high alert. I found that snapping turtles cannot stick their heads in their shells and they are the only turtles without this ability. By the time I returned with my other camera, he had slipped away and the people who'd been watching him had kindly given him his opportunity.

New Member of the Tiny Urban Forest

This gap, from last year, 2010, to now, has been a time of dreaming and waking and not knowing which was which. But today it is raining on the rhododendrons and mountain laurel. The sound of the rain on the leaves is different from the sound of the rain through the bare trees. There is a bullfrog that croaks on occasion by the kidney shaped pool that's gone green and pond-like. The abandoned house below is sinking in the vines and trees around it. 
We have a dog again. A slightly old new dog.  He will appear often in the Tiny Urban Forest. I hope for many years.