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August 14, 2019

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 70°F, calm and cloudy at 1:15 PM on August 14, 2019.
  • Clouds slowly dispersed for a warm, sticky afternoon until a cool, dry breeze came through.
  • A giant swallowtail in the Fern Glen was a highlight today.
  • This week's trail report covers the Cary Pines side of the trail system.

The Trails

  • A hint of blue in the Gifford parking lot led to partly cloudy skies at the end of the Scots Pine Allée.
  • Often overlooked, pale smartweed was in the path through the Old Gravel Pit.
  • The little meadow along the road to the Fern Glen has had spicebush swallowtail the last several visits.
  • A couple great spangled fritillaries were on the wild bergamot too.
  • Zabulon skippers were in their 2nd brood and could be found in a number of locations.
  • A lone thistle was in its usual spot.
  • Perhaps the same one from a week or two ago, a giant swallowtail swept through and paused (this time...) in the sun.
  • At the beginning of the limestone cobble, tall meadow-rue was setting seed.
  • At the other end, great lobelia had been blooming since last week.
  • Near by, trillium fruit were ripening.
  • Near the fen, maple-leaved viburnum fruit were big but not yet ripe.
  • Along the board walk in the fen, turtlehead was blooming.
  • The dense flower clusters of climbing hempweed sweetened the air.
  • In the fen and around the pond, elderberry was ripening.
  • Like tiny tomatos, bittersweet nightshade berries were ripening. Unlike tomatos, they are poisonous.
  • Back on solid ground, purple-flowering raspberry was beyond ripe.
  • Red baneberry could be found in a number of spots along the trail.
  • Much less common here is white baneberry aka, doll's eyes.
  • Clearweed is a non-stinging nettle relative.
  • Another lobelia, our smallest, was blooming: Indian tobacco.
  • In the back corner of the 'Glen, the ground was almost bare except for little mounds. Was this excessive earthworm activity?
  • Near the deck, whorled aster still looked as if it were only about to bloom.
  • Around the corner was cardinal flower, our third and most elusive lobelia.
  • A handsome hemlock looper moth was at rest on leaves of NY ironweed.
  • On the leaves below were gelatinous egg masses, of a caddisfly.
  • The stems appeared to be host to galls of some insect.
  • On the other side of the path, sneezeweed was blooming.
  • At the back of the pond, sweet pepperbush was doing well this year.
  • The new turtle log at the front of the pond seemed to be a great hit.
  • On the shore, wild mint was not as abundant as ususal.
  • Seed pods of blue flag were swelling.
  • On the way out of the Fern Glen, spikenard fruit was ripening.
  • Out on the Cary Pines Trail, Indian pipe was coming up.
  • Next week: the Wappinger Creek Trail side of the trail system.
Sightings
Mammals Birds Butterflies Moth Insects Caterpillars Arthropods Fungus Herp Plants Other
1 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 1 Giant Swallowtail 1 Hemlock looper moth 1 Cardinal flower
1 Downy Woodpecker 1 Spicebush Swallowtail 1 Clearweed
2 Red-eyed Vireo 7 Cabbage White 1 Indian tobacco
5 Blue Jay 2 Clouded Sulphur 1 Sneezeweed
2 Black-capped Chickadee 1 Eastern Tailed-Blue 1 Turtlehead
1 White-breasted Nuthatch 1 Spring Azure 1 Whorled aster
1 Carolina Wren 3 Great Spangled Fritillary
2 American Robin 1 Pearl Crescent
1 Gray Catbird 2 Eastern Comma
1 Cedar Waxwing 1 Common Ringlet
1 Louisiana Waterthrush 2 Common Wood-Nymph
1 Scarlet Tanager 7 Silver-spotted Skipper
2 Eastern Towhee 2 Least Skipper
1 Field Sparrow 2 Zabulon Skipper
5 American Goldfinch 1 Dun Skipper