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August 29, 2018

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 90°F, partly cloudy and humid but breezy at 1:30 PM on August 29, 2018.
  • At least there was a breeze today...
  • This week's trail report covers the Cary Pines Trail side of the trail system.
  • The Fern Glen will be closed for several weeks starting Monday 9/2/18 while the deck is being replaced.

The Trails

  • It was hot and humid along the road to the Carriage House.
  • Birds and bugs were pretty quiet all the way to the shade of the Old Gravel Pit where there were still some mushrooms coming up.
  • Webs of jewelbox spiders stretched across several paths today.
  • At the bottom of the Old Gravel Pit, false nettle was blooming.
  • The flower is similar and even though it is in the nettle family, it lacks stinging hairs.
  • Just before the exit to the Fern Glen, a large insect flew by and just about disappeared.
  • It took several attempts to locate it - it was a dragonfly, perhaps the fawn darner, going by the two yellow spots.
  • By the Fern Glen parking lot, one of the hazels was getting wrapped up.
  • The fall webworm nest envelopes leaves and branches.
  • The caterpillars feed inside the shelter. The eastern tent caterpillar nest is made in crotchs and the caterpillars wander out to feed. The Gypsy moth makes no nest at all.
  • In the back of the Fern Glen, horse-balm was blooming.
  • The flowers and leaves have a lemony smell.
  • Whorled aster was still looking good, especially in the afternoon light.
  • Just past it, tall white lettuce was up and in bloom.
  • Its small, nodding flowers are easy to overlook.
  • White wood aster looked nice against a bed of moss.
  • Zigzag goldenrod is an easy one to ID: dry woods; toothed, egg-shaped leaves; terminal flower cluster, all on a zigzaging stalk.
  • Only bumble bees can get into bottle gentian. It was still doing well since last week.
  • The exuberant groundnut vine by the kiosk was finally blooming. Look for silver-spotted skipper caterpillars with their big false eye spots.
  • At the top of the road, a tall shrub was blooming.
  • Many insects were in the large flower clusters at the top.
  • The leaf is large and divided.
  • Every part of the plant is equipped with spines. The native plant is Hercules's club - Aralia spinosa. This is probably the invasive Asian Angelica tree - Aralia elata.
  • Next week: the Wappinger Creek Trail side of the trail system.
1 Mourning Dove3 Cabbage White1 Fawn darner1 Fall webworm1 False nettle
1 Red-bellied Woodpecker3 Clouded Sulphur1 Groundnut
2 Hairy Woodpecker3 Orange Sulphur1 Aralia species
3 Eastern Wood-Pewee3 Meadow Fritillary1 Horse-balm
1 Eastern Phoebe1 Tall white lettuce
5 Blue Jay1 Zigzag goldenrod
3 Black-capped Chickadee
1 House Wren
6 Eastern Bluebird
10 Chipping Sparrow
1 American Goldfinch