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 III2020-12-12 11:15:292020-12-14 11:16:09The beavers on the brook nearby seem to have nestled into their bank den. No tracks in the light snow and no new wood chips on the ground.
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Now that the wasps have filled all the ground holes in all the electrical outlets in the garage, they’ve begun using the fancy solitary bee and wasp apartment house that was made of reeds especially for them. The female lays an egg, tucks in provisions for the larva, and fills the hole with fine mud, without my noticing. I’ll try to catch her in action from now on.
Our dog flushed a grouse off a nest containing just three eggs this morning. Grouse normally incubate 9 to 14 eggs but when, after shooing off the dog, I reached into the brush pile to straighten out the situation, the eggs were warm, suggesting that this female was calling it quits at three.
Insect frass all over your picnic table this year? You’re not alone. Matt Ayers, an ecologist at Dartmouth is happy to see them. He writes that caterpillar abundance fluctuates by 20-fold, depending on the year. It’s all good, not an outbreak, and many different species of caterpillar are providing food for birds this year.
Raven chicks on a ledge on a cliff face near here are fluffy. The insides of their begging mouths are bright red.
The berries of red baneberry are ripe, shiny, and bright. But they are named baneberry for a reason.
Maybe it’s the heat. All things green seem to be extra large this year, despite it being droughty. Wild raspberries are also plumper than in years past