Posts Tagged ‘Carpenter Bee’

1. Mount Monadnock from Troy

This photo isn’t really about Mount Monadnock; it’s about the incredible shades of spring green that the surrounding forests are clothed in right now. I’ve tried several times to capture these colors on “film” and have failed. Even this photo doesn’t do them justice, but it’s the closest I’ve been able to come.

 2. Bee

The long antennas on this insect tell me it isn’t a hoverfly, but what look like little knobs at the ends of the antennae have me wondering if it’s a bee or not because I can’t seem to find an example of a bee with those knobs. A carpenter bee maybe? Whatever it is, it seemed to want its picture taken. I was shooting over this branch focused on something else when it walked down the branch and stopped right in front of the lens.  And then it sat there letting me snap as many photos as I wanted. Usually the minute I point the camera at them they’re off and gone. Maybe it was the sunny spot on the branch that attracted it.

 3. Robin's Eggs

Some friends had a robin’s nest in their holly bush so I snuck my camera in and took a quick couple of shots after momma flew off.  They look green to me but my color finding software sees blue and turquoise.

 4. Stuffed Black Bear

The same friends that have the robin’s nest deal in antiques and found this stuffed and mounted juvenile black bear at a tag sale recently. If it was standing on its hind legs those front paws would fit comfortably right on your shoulders as if you were about to waltz. Being surprised by a cousin of this guy on a trail wouldn’t be good at all, so you have to be aware of what’s going on around you. The black bear population is on the rise in New Hampshire and I’ve even seen them in my own yard.

5. Cinnamon Fern

Someone once thought that the fertile fronds of cinnamon fern (Osmunda cinnamomea) looked like cinnamon sticks and that’s how it got its common name. The reddish brown, fertile fronds appear after the green, infertile ones. Once the fern grows its fertile fronds it stops growing and puts all of its energy into producing spores.

6. Cinnamon Fern Closeup

Many ferns have their spore bearing sporangia on the undersides of their leaves but cinnamon and other ferns in the Osmunda family grow them clustered on small leaflets on fertile fronds. The sporangia are tiny round growths that will dry as they mature until finally splitting open to release the spores.

7. Great Scented Liverwort Colony

The lighter green color in this photo means that great scented liverworts (Conocephalum conicum) are showing plenty of new growth, but I still haven’t seen any of their umbrella-like fruiting structures.

8. Fungus on Pine Tree

I don’t have any idea what is going on here except maybe that the fungus that looks like bread dough has a fungus on it. The larger of the two was as big as a marble and was growing on a pine tree.

9. Juniper Haircap Moss Splash Cups

Splash cups on juniper haircap moss (Polytrichum juniperinum) are as rare as hen’s teeth in this area. Mosses in the polytrichum genus have male and female reproductive organs on separate plants, so when you see these little cups you know you’ve found a male plant that is ready to reproduce.

 10. Juniper Haircap Moss Splash Cups

The male moss produces sperm in these splash cups and when a raindrop falls into the cup the sperm is splashed out. If there is enough water to swim in, the sperm will then swim to the female plant and fertilize the eggs. Each cup, about half the diameter of a pencil eraser, looks like a tiny flower with its rosettes of tiny orange leaves surrounding the reproductive parts.

 11. Spider on Rhody

This spider magically appeared in the photo I took of a small leaved rhododendron blossom. It’s a tiny little thing and I didn’t even see it while I was taking the photo. I’m not sure about its name. I know it isn’t a crab spider but that’s about as far as I was able to get.

12. Viceroy Caterpillar

I think this creature is the caterpillar of a viceroy butterfly. It tries to look like a bird dropping so it doesn’t get eaten. It looks to me like it was successful.

13. Viceroy Caterpillar

Giant swallowtail butterfly caterpillars also resemble bird droppings but they don’t have the horns that this one does. It is said that viceroy caterpillars feed at night and stay still during the day when birds are out and about, but this one was crawling along a twig in daylight. It couldn’t have been much more than an inch long.

14. Waves on the Ashuelot

For over three years now I’ve been practicing photographing cresting waves on the Ashuelot River and I’ve learned a little by doing so. Like a great blue heron I stand at the ready and wait for the perfect time to strike, because just a fraction of a second either way can make a big difference in how advanced the curl of the wave is. Click the shutter too soon and you have a strange lump of green water, too late and you have only white foam and spray. In this spot the best colors and sharpest detail are found in the morning when the sun is over my shoulder and the river is before me. Noon or later means washed out color and less detail, and on cloudy days trying for stop action isn’t worth the effort.

If you take the time to sit and watch for a while, and then close your eyes and just listen to the crash of the waves, a river will speak to you in its own way. After a time you’ll come to feel as well as see and hear its rhythm, and the rejects will become fewer as a result.

Nature is man’s teacher. She unfolds her treasures to his search, unseals his eye, illumes his mind, and purifies his heart; an influence breathes from all the sights and sounds of her existence. ~Alfred Bernhard Nobel

Thanks for stopping in.


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