Saturday, April 18, 2015

Early Morning Sounds and Spring Flowers

5:30 a.m.
Filled with sounds
Spring Peepers
Wood Frogs
Leopard Frogs
American Toads
Wild Turkeys
And our Rooster

Round-Lobed Hepatica
Anémone d'Amérique
Anemone americana

Beaked Hazel
Noisetier à long bec
Corylus cornuta

Sanguinaire du Canada
Sanguinaria canadensis

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Flowers and Butterflies At Last

            On Friday, I found 23 species of plants in bloom. Thirteen of them were cultivated and growing at various locations in the Royal Botanical  Gardens in Hamilton/Burlington. The others were growing either as wild or as cultivated species that have become naturalized. Today, Saturday the 11th of  April, I found our Silver Maple in bloom and, as the dog and I walked in the early afternoon sunlight, I also saw two butterflies. Both butterflies were quickly on the move and i did not get a good look at either of them but just enough to be fairly sure that they were the Mourning Cloak and the Question Mark as both are usually found early in the spring in our area as overwintering species. I also heard and saw an Eastern Phoebe in our yard today. They have been in the area for a week or more but just not on our property.

            Below are photos of some of the flowers that I have seen in the past two days.

 Slender Speedwell (Veronica filiformis)

 Silver Maple Tree (Acer saccharinum)

Christmas Rose/Red Hellebore (Helleborus atrorubens)

Ruby Glow Witch Hazel (Hamamelis x intermedia 'Ruby Glow')

Monday, April 06, 2015

Friday's Photo

Last Friday, Fleur-Ange and I took a late afternoon walk down by the Grand River. We saw three Turkey Vultures in a tree top just across the pedestrian bridge that is near Hardy Road. At first we did not know what they were. We were hoping for Eagles. We crossed the bridge and had a closer look with the binoculars. Sigh. Just Turkey Vultures.

On the way back across the bridge we saw some Canadian Geese on one of the small islands in the river but while looking at them, Fleur-Ange noticed something brown a couple of metres away from the geese. It was a muskrat that had come out to sun itself. It looked at us briefly then curled up to sleep in the sun some more while I pushed my camera's zoom to the limit. Results are below:

Sunday, April 05, 2015

April 5 Sounds of the Morning

Sounds of the morning:
1 Cardinal
1 Rooster
1 Wild Turkey
1 Car
1 Song Sparrow
1 Woodcock
The clock strikes six

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Birthday Report and a few Photos

        I am not sure why it is so difficult for me to keep blogging and not just think about blogging but it seems to be that way these days. If I had a blog written for everyone thought about, there would be a lot more.

        On with this one:

        I recently had my 72nd birthday and was overwhelmed with birthday wishes from Facebook and from interactions with friends in various places. There were almost 90 well wishers on Facebook and quite a number of personal encounters with the birthday song coming several times. As I said, overwhelming.

        There is a frog exhibit at the Royal Botanical Gardens that started a week ago last Saturday that will go on until April 12th. I stopped by last Friday, when I was in for my regular herbarium volunteer work and managed get a couple of photos. It was difficult as there were many children rushing about with parents or grandparents in tow trying to see everything as quickly as possible. I would almost get a frog in my camera viewfinder only to find the back of some child's head appear. I shall try again next Friday but for now here is a Black and Green Poison Frog (Dendrobates auratus) that is native to Central and South American rainforests.

        Meanwhile, outside in the gardens, I looked for wild flowers that were surviving the cold and snow. There were several Groundsels that were showing colour but none that looked like they were really blooming. On the other hand, down in the Woodland Garden section I did find the Brevipetala Witch Hazel almost in bloom. It is a cultivated shrub that often blooms mid-winter.

        Below are a few other photos that I have processed in the last week or two:

Flower in the RBG Mediterranean Garden

Venus &  Mercury in the evening sky

Another sunset photo