https://vermontalmanac.org/wp-content/uploads/VTALMANAC_LOGO_STACK_TAG-300x150.png 0 0 Dave Mance III https://vermontalmanac.org/wp-content/uploads/VTALMANAC_LOGO_STACK_TAG-300x150.png Dave Mance III2020-05-25 10:41:092020-05-25 10:41:09Nice warm weather has gotten carpenter ant queens up and about. Lots of winged females looking to start a new colony in any rotting wood that’s lying around.
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On some birds the contour feathers have what’s called an afterfeather, a little fluffy plume from the same follicle as the big feather. This provides extra insulation and is especially common in grouse.
A friend and I were trying to decide which birds were the most aggressive at the birdfeeder and we concluded that they all were pretty feisty, from the mourning doves right down to the hummingbirds.
Twin fawns are frolicking in the evening. It’s so innocent seeming, it’s hard not to feel a sense of anthropomorphic dread on their behalf.
The hot, hot weather in late May took a toll on apple blossoms. They seem to have opened up on one day and disappeared the next. Of course, my sense of time, and most everyone else’s, may be a bit off, due to isolation and discombobulation.
Scarlet tanagers tend to sing from the treetops and the leaves are big enough now to obscure them. It might take a little time to see one but it’s well worth the effort.
Hummingbirds can distinguish many more colors than humans. Not just ultraviolet, but ultraviolet+green, ultraviolet+red, and ultraviolet+yellow. Researchers spent three summers deploying sugar of various hues to discover this. We are “color-blind compared to birds” according to one of the scientists. And, according to me, it’s good to clean out the hummingbird feeder before it gets moldy.
Most wild plants can be encountered on an every-day walk, but usually not showy ladies slippers. The time is now for a pilgrimage, to a place where they are in masses among lesser – but also beautiful – bog plants.