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Trail Reports

Insights on trail conditions and the plants and animals you can expect to encounter throughout the seasons.

BarryMeet Barry, the author of our trail reports >>

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 59°F, mostly clear and breezy at 12:30 PM on April 17, 2019.
  • Last week featured 3 new flowers - this week 12. We are off and running.
  • Spring azures and juniper hairstreaks were butterfly returns today.
  • This trail report covers the whole of the trail system.

The Trails

  • The grass in the front Old Hayfield was greener than last week.
  • Yellow-bellied sapsuckers were frequently heard, but seldom seen.
  • A number of raptors were soaring overhead. This looked like a juvnile bald eagle.
  • The red-tailed hawk that had been calling left the scene.
  • On the Sedge Meadow Trail, ground ivy was blooming.
  • a couple butterflies were darting around in the cedars.
  • Of course, they were juniper hairstreaks.
  • Occasionally they seemed attracted to galls on the branches. Likewise for some bees.
  • Finally a spring azure settled down in the sun long enough for a photo.
  • Out in the Sedge Meadow, a lone cattail from last year was shedding seed.
  • The benches came out this week, here in the back Old Hayfied and in the other usual places.
  • At the bottom of the big hill on the Wappinger Creek Trail, Pensylvania sedge was blooming.
  • Trout-lily was doing well enough this year.
  • Invasive lesser celendine was taking over down along the floodplain.
  • As the path came out above the Fern Glen, the Norway Spruce Glade stretched parallel to the road.
  • In there fat, furry bee flies were attending the myrtle.
  • At the Fern Glen proper, wild ginger was blooming in the Roeller Bed along the road.
  • Right at the entrance, rue-anemone was creeping out into the path.
  • Across in the limestone cobble, spring beauty was staying within the edging.
  • Blink and you miss bloodroot - it may be the shortest lasting flower here.
  • One of the longer lasting is large-flowered trillium.
  • The hepaticas were having a good year.
  • Carolina spring beauty has a broader leaf than the other.
  • It's easy to walk past leatherwood.
  • One has to look for the flower.
  • The leaves are the first part of ramps to appear; the flower follows after they are gone.
  • Except for the flower, American fly honeysuckle blends in with other small shrubs.
  • At the front of the pond, painted turtles were taking advantage of a low lying log.
  • On the way out of the Fern Glen, corydalis was blooming.
  • At the junction with the Cary Pines Trail, a bit of orange floated in a circle and disappeared into the sunny path.
  • It was an eastern comma, in fact there were two, each in its own sunyy spot.
  • Just past the commas, a small tree blocked the path.
  • It in turn had been felled by a larger tree.
  • Back at the Gifford Carriage House, the magnolia was doing very well.
  • The dirt road in the background had but one spring azure. Maybe more next week...
Hepatica

Sightings

Birds
  • 1 Bald Eagle
  • 1 Red-shouldered Hawk
  • 2 Red-tailed Hawk
  • 1 Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • 4 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
  • 1 Northern Flicker
  • 1 Pileated Woodpecker
  • 1 Eastern Phoebe
  • 6 Tree Swallow
  • 9 Black-capped Chickadee
  • 1 White-breasted Nuthatch
  • 1 Carolina Wren
  • 1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet
  • 3 Eastern Bluebird
  • 4 American Robin
  • 1 Pine Warbler
  • 1 Louisiana Waterthrush
  • 1 Eastern Towhee
  • 1 Chipping Sparrow
  • 1 Field Sparrow
  • 2 Song Sparrow
  • 1 Northern Cardinal
  • 6 Red-winged Blackbird
  • 5 House Finch
Butterflies
  • 2 'Olive' Juniper Hairstreak
  • 11 Spring Azure
  • 2 Eastern Comma
Plants
  • 1 American fly honeysuckle
  • 1 Bloodroot
  • 1 Carolina spring beauty
  • 1 Corydalis
  • 1 Ground ivy
  • 1 Large-flowered trillium
  • 1 Leatherwood
  • 1 Lesser celandine
  • 1 Oconee bells
  • 1 Pennsylvania sedge
  • 1 Round-lobed hepatica
  • 1 Rue-anemone
  • 1 Spring-beauty
  • 1 Trout-lily
  • 1 Wild ginger
  • It was 48°F, mostly cloudy and breezy at 10:30 AM on April 9, 2019.
  • It's still been cool, things are poised for a bit of sun or one warm day.
  • Mourning cloaks and eastern commas have been seen, but not today.
  • This trail report covers the whole of the trail system.

The Trails

Northern Water Snake

Sightings

Birds
  • 3 Mourning Dove
  • 1 Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • 2 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
  • 1 Downy Woodpecker
  • 1 Northern Flicker
  • 1 Pileated Woodpecker
  • 3 Eastern Phoebe
  • 1 Blue Jay
  • 1 Tree Swallow
  • 4 Black-capped Chickadee
  • 1 White-breasted Nuthatch
  • 1 Brown Creeper
  • 3 Golden-crowned Kinglet
  • 7 American Robin
  • 3 Pine Warbler
  • 3 Field Sparrow
  • 3 Song Sparrow
  • 1 White-throated Sparrow
  • 1 Northern Cardinal
  • 4 Brown-headed Cowbird
  • 3 American Goldfinch
Herp
  • 1 Bullfrog
  • 1 Northern water snake
Plants
  • 1 Dutchman's-breeches
  • 1 Magnolia
  • 1 Red maple
  • 1 Sharp-lobed hepatica

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