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 III2020-12-20 14:52:162020-12-21 14:52:59Snowy owls have recently been seen in Vermont. We’ve all heard that they leave their arctic home when food there is scarce but another reason for these erratic irruptions might instead be that they occur following an unusually successful breeding season – successful because of an abundance of prey.
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The white pine needle damage you’re seeing is caused by a fungal pathogen complex, and its severity is linked to weather conditions from a year ago. Perhaps the dry June will lessen the severity of next year’s outbreak.
Both black ash and white ash leaf out much later than most other trees and are now easy to spot. The flattened, tan-colored bark on many ash trees sometimes makes them look like they have a bad case of mange. But this condition is caused by a fungus that just feeds on dead bark and does no harm. Not to be confused with damage from the emerald ash borer.
Jupiter and Saturn are getting closer to one another (from our vantage point). They’ll be at their closest on December 21st, so stay tuned.
The ground beneath female white ash trees is littered with seeds. Almost white, they look fresh and optimistic. Makes me think there’s hope.
Raven chicks on a ledge on a cliff face near here are fluffy. The insides of their begging mouths are bright red.
Unlike many of us humans, rattlesnakes like it hot, especially the females. When pregnant, a female’s body temperature is 6 to 8 degrees C higher than normal, which enables the embryos to develop.