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September 08, 2021


Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 81°F, mostly cloudy, and windy at 1:00 PM on September 8, 2021.
  • There were no major rains since the last trail report - it had been a hurricane a week for a while.
  • The creek had calmed down, and so had the wildlife...
  • This week's trail report covers the Wappinger Creek Trail side of the trail system.

The Trails

  • Although it was warm, the sun was not out much over the Old Hayfield, and birds and butterflies were few.
  • Invasive oriental bittersweet was sprawling across the side of the Sedge Meadow Trail. Its fruit, when ripe, would be the familiar orange and yellow highlights in autumn wreathes.
  • In the Sedge Meadow, even the goldenrods were starting to look subdued.
  • Clusters of bittersweet nightshade fruit were in various stages of ripeness along the edge.
  • The back Old Hayfield was a little more lively, not having been recently mowed.
  • Here, Goldenrods were still bright and along the side...
  • ... invasive autumn olive fruit was ripening.
  • The leaves are silvery below, covered with little scales that are hard to see without a hand lens.
  • Somehow spotted knappweed had slipped by mention until now - it's been out for a while.
  • In the back of the field, Japanese barberry berries were ripening.
  • Finally a native to our region: thimbleweed. This strange anemone has popped up in a few locations along the trails this year.
  • And finally a great spangled fritillary. Interesting was the white area on the hindwing margin.
  • At half that size, but twice that of a pearl crescent, a meadow fritillary paused to try to get some sun.
  • The Wappinger Creek had calmed down since last week but was still full.
  • A jaunty mushroom had grown up along the side of the trail down the slope.
  • Down in the floodplain, wood nettle was going to seed.
  • The seeds really stand out compared to those of other nettles.
  • Invasive Japanese stilt grass was starting to flower. Too late to pull it and just leave it now...
  • Our native zigzag goldenrod was doing well now.
  • The view from trail marker 10 was much calmer than last week.
  • On the way out towards Cary Pines Trail, those capsized puffballs from a few weeks ago were completing their mission by puffing.
  • Just past the trailhead, a pair of huge mushrooms was on its side.
  • The scaly cap and stem, with pores instead of gills below suggests Old Man of the Woods.
  • Next week: the Cary Pines Trail the side of the trail system.


  • 1 Red-eyed Vireo
  • 2 Blue Jay
  • 1 Black-capped Chickadee
  • 1 Tufted Titmouse
  • 1 White-breasted Nuthatch
  • 1 Gray Catbird
  • 1 American Redstart
  • 1 Field Sparrow
  • 3 Cabbage White
  • 3 Clouded Sulphur
  • 2 Great Spangled Fritillary
  • 1 Meadow Fritillary
  • 3 Pearl Crescent
  • 1 Monarch
  • 1 Silver-spotted Skipper
  • 1 Japanese stilt grass
  • 1 Spotted knapweed