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September 16, 2020

Handsome Trig

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 67°F, hazy and windy at 2:30 PM on September 16, 2020.
  • Some fields have been mowed.
  • Little bits of fall color have been appearing.
  • This week's trail report covers the Wappinger Creek Trail side of the trail system.

The Trails

  • It has been looking and feeling more like fall, but the sun over the front Old Hayfield was warm today.
  • That one little clump of wild bergamot was still going, but few insects were on it.
  • Overhead, black walnuts looked ready to drop.
  • Out in the open, Queen Anne's lace's was living up to one of its other names: "bird's nest".
  • Pearl crescents were still out in fair numbers, but few others were today.
  • A turkey vulture rose out of the tree line and slowly spiraled up and away.
  • Something long and green flew by and landed in front of me.
  • It was a praying mantis.
  • A stink bug blended in well with the greenery around an acorn.
  • The back Old Hayfield had been mowed to keep it from becoming woods.
  • Broad grape leaves might be worth scanning for insects basking in the sun.
  • Maybe warmth under the leaves was enough for a pair of Handsome Trigs - bush crickets of the subfamily Trigonidiinae, colorful relatives of our more familiar house and field crickets.
  • From the front, it looked like a palp was missing.
  • And from the side it was clear that both antennae were gone. This one must have had some stories...
  • Threatening ankles on the ground below were hickory nuts.
  • Toward the back of the field, invasive burningbush was starting to show off the reason it was brought here.
  • What kind of color will the maples over the Wappinger Creek have this year?
  • Over the edge of the bluff, common polypody grew in a nice colony.
  • They are elegantly simple compared to other busy ferns.
  • Wreath goldenrod is easy to recognize: a woodland species with narrow leaves and flowers in the leaf axils.
  • Another fan of goldenrods is the flashy caterpillar of the brown-hooded owlet, an unassuming moth.
  • Down in the Creek's floodplain, tall white lettuce was posed with an uncluttered backdrop.
  • Its crazy flowers could be seen fairly well, too.
  • At the "Appendix", as I like to call the area around trail marker 10, wood nettle was beginning to set seed.
  • The seeds are surrounded by little spines that mean business.
  • It was actually starting to feel warm even in the shade by the time I took a parting look at the Creek.
  • Next week: The Cary Pines Trail side of the trail system.


  • 1 Turkey Vulture
  • 1 Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • 1 Downy Woodpecker
  • 3 Blue Jay
  • 3 Gray Catbird
  • 1 Tall white lettuce
  • 1 Wreath goldenrod
  • 5 Cabbage White
  • 10 Clouded Sulphur
  • 9 Pearl Crescent


  • 1 Brown-hooded Owlet


  • 1 Handsome trig
  • 1 Praying mantis
  • 1 Stink bug