faunal

Searching for wildlife

Joe pye weed

We went on the wildlife walk, and, as I expected, we saw far more plants than critters. Joe-pye weed.

Jpw variant maybe

Did not look very hard in the wildflower ID book for this one…variant joe-pye weed.

Lilies

Fragrant water lilies and yellow pond lily.

Mystery blooms

Didn’t ID this; didn’t browse for long.

Mullein

Mullien.

Turkle

Then we took the wildlife drive. We still saw many more plants, but they were farther away. And the bugs were so desperate to find us the were slamming into the windows. I was glad we were inside. Painted? turtle. We saw the usual complement of mid-summer loons, swans, Canada geese, seagulls, and a few ducks. No grebes; no coots. No mammals.

Gotta go apply anti-itch cream to the bug bites I got on the wildlife walk.

Raucous

Sandhill cranes

Sandhill cranes.

I awakened about 4:30am and could hear a soft pitter-patter of rain mostly disguised by the fan. Still, I descended and closed what windows were open on the porch, or closed them enough that if the rain picked up a bit it wouldn’t come in.

By perhaps 8am, the sun was out and I thought geeze it’s going to be hot and humid! Then, shortly overcast set in until about 12:30pm, followed by the day’s full allotment of sun sun sun. The basil is happier with the rainfall.

Wisely, as it turns out, I took my walk during the overcast. I got over the hill and I was striding along and all of a sudden I could hear this bunch making a ruckus. It wasn’t until I got past the fencerow vegetation to the field access opening that I could see this bunch. There are two/three young ones to the left of the adults.

Skippers everywhere (exaggeration)

Milkweed skippers

I found a milkweed just beginning to bloom, a plant in the vanguard of the blooming, and covered up with skippers.

Vetch skippers

I found this vetch with plenty of skipper-attention.

Basil skipper

Something aka some critters/insects have been eating my basil. This skipper is the only visitor I’ve spotted; however, I don’t think of skippers as basil-eaters. Mystery….

Swamp watch

Tar-gravel fixing of holes in the perpetually patched blacktop through the swamp. It’s a bumpy ride.

New vocab: frass

Morning light rug

Loving the low-angle morning light. And this rug. It’s seen better days, but we both like the color, so it stays (for now).

Flowers table

Stunning flower arrangement for the table…all from the garden and field. Great party followed!

Frass maker

Bumper crop of tent caterpillars this year. Friends are picking them off by the five-gallon bucket full. Yikes! I have heard of scat 💩; turns out that the same sort of output by insects is frass. I knew you wanted to know that.

Sedentary moments

Gulls n geese

We ate lunch with the breeze getting too friendly, and the gulls thinking about it, but fortunately keeping sufficient distance that we did not have to actively fend them off.

Freighter upbound

Then we shifted locales and sat beach-side and watched for freighters, also noting a pair of mergansers that came by three times that I counted. This freighter is upbound, meaning headed into Lake Superior. BTW, that land past it is a foreign country populated by many very nice people.

Sunset by beach

We stayed by the beach until the wind kicked up and the sun’s strength diminished. Later, as the rays approached horizontal, they eventually lit the forest floor. Sweet!

Did I say we told stories and laughed and had a grand time? We sure did.

More wild

Foggy morn spiderweb

Overnight rain led to a wet, overcast, drippy morning. With a delicate spiderweb undulating in the intermittent breeze.

Caspian tern maybe

We decided to head over to the refuge, and while en route the sun emerged, so that by the time we were on the wildlife drive, it was full out and even almost warm. Guessing these are Caspian terns.

Shiny log turtles

Such shiny carapaces these turtles have!

Swan back

And, of course trumpeter swans. Not nesting yet that we noticed. Only a few Canada geese; far more swans.

Wild Day

Porcupine

Why did the porcupine cross the road? ☀️

Sandhill crane pair

Pair of sandhills. Note he and she are looking opposite directions; it must be a gender thing.

Morels bicolor

Around here the morels are one of two colors: blond or brunette. Sautéed in butter, both are exceptional.

Our wildlife sighting today included a pair of deer—no photo.

☀️ My guess: to escape flooding…geeze, the water is high!

Vultures over Deshler

Dawn frost

No photo of the thermal-riding vultures, circling, circling (catchy title, however—heh). Instead: frost in the field.

Bridge lane closure

Almost always a lane closed on the Big Bridge. Yay for infrastructure maintenance.

Rabbit wondering

Rabbit wondering at roadside.

Pioneer sugar

Sugar in towers. [Do you think of Ohio as a sugar producer? Nope? You aren’t alone, I’m certain. (Beets not cane (duh).)]

I hope you’ve enjoyed this exercise in prepositions. Overkill, in all likelihood….

Lookee there

Warm day

Lookee there: warm enough for a sleeveless top! Got up to 82°F on the porch, combo of solar gain and wood stove….

Sandhill in orchard

Lookee there: sandhill in the orchard!

High water

Lookee there: high, high, high water! Bad for the shoreline!

I wanna crawl

Lookee there: “I wanna crawl!” “And doncha love my hat!”

ABG moments

Frog eyeing frog statue

Ya gotta know that if we go to the BotGarden, we check out the Frog Baby and look for frogs in the pool. Yes, they’re back from winter break; there’s one eyeing a statue frog!

Grooming Goddess pool

And we check out the Goddess. Still waiting for new plant-plugs. This poor fellow is working against the spring waterfall of plant detritus threatening to clog her pools. Keeps him employed!

Pond life

Totally different pond/pool, and different story. Shape and color variation is pure eye-candy. Plant eye-candy, that is.

Super chive head

Okay; floral fun. I don’t know what this is, but I call it super-chive.

Bird watching

Brings a different meaning to the phrase “bird-watching.” [Bird spotted by the Guru.]