Interlude: Spring/Summer 2013 and 2012

 Monarchs in love. Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA (2012)

This spring and summer have been rainy or unbelievably hot, but mostly damp with abundant mosquitoes. Thus it hasn't been great weather for wandering local areas in search of what is flying, crawling, or slithering around. I have also been insanely busy with other things. I miss my wandering.

 I can report that my Hairy Woodpeckers produced at least one male and one female baby. So too the Downy woodpeckers. The Red-bellied woodpeckers had at least one offspring but I haven't identified its sex yet as its head feathers are not in. There are two baby female cardinals who I believe have different parents. The Blue Jays (I have three pairs) had at least two babies. The Grackles produces at least six babies. The Starlings were odd. One pair produced six yound and another pair just one. The House Sparrows had an over abundance of young, though one was really a cowbird. That's the first time I've witnessed a cowbird baby being fed by its host species. And for the first time Red-winged Blackbirds are showing up at my feeders and they had several young as well.

There are an abundance of dragonflies this year on the lakes and bogs. All the water has been good for them it seems.

Last year I never posted my photos. I am terribly behind. Last year was the year of butterflies and turtles. Fritillaries, Swallowtails, Monarchs, Viceroys, American Ladies, and Red Admirals all flittered in abundance. Along with them Snapping Turtles seemed to be making themselves obvious, pretending to be rocks or mating in weed filled waters of the bogs.

A visit with one of my favorite birds, the Tree Swallow. Burrage Pond.

Early spring the warblers arrived. Black and White Warbler on the edge of East Monponsett Pond, Halifax, MA. Great Crested Flycatchers also arrived around this time.

Baby bullheads (catfish). East Monponsett Pond, Halifax, MA

 Frogs (green frogs) also made early appearances. This was a sunny but cold day out on Burrage Pond.

Green frog

 This is the second yellow-billed cuckoo I've found in this area. I've also seen black-billed cuckoos as well. Finding this bird takes patience since its more often heard than seen. Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA. Brown Thrashers were also evident this day.

Snapping Turtle impersonating a rock. Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA.

Snapping Turtle underwater.  Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA.

 Another snapping turtle breathing. Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA.

 Two snapping turtles...mating.

 American toads were also abundant at Burrage Pond in 2012.

Mallard egg. Burrage Pond.

 Female twelve spotted skimmer. Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA.

 White Corporal female, Myles Standish State Park

White Corporal female, Myles Standish State Park

Eastern Pondhawk female with snack.

Dot-tailed Whiteface, Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA

 Dot-tailed Whiteface, Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA

 Not sure. Female probably.

 Skipper of some sort. Someday I will get better at identifying these.

Painted lady

 Silver-bordered fritillary

Silver-bordered fritillary 

 Common Ringlet. Myles Standish State Park.

Spicebush Swallowtail, my backyard. I've seen a lot of these in 2013 as well.

 Horace's Duskywing, my front garden.

Viceroy, Burrage Pond, Hanson, MA

 Long Dash (I'm getting better at Skippers)

  Silver-bordered fritillary

 American Lady with Monarch in the back, my front garden.

 The Monarch by itself.

 The Painted Lady by itself.

I also did a brief stop over at Gillette Castle in East Haddam/Lyme, CT where I had my first of several encounters with White-tailed Deer.

There are two fawns under her.

Coming out into the open and trying to nurse.

One gets a face wash and the other a snack.

Setting off into the big, wide field.