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 III2020-05-15 11:17:052020-05-16 11:18:20The first thunderstorms of spring arrived on 60-70 m.p.h. winds. Tornado warnings were issued for Bennington, Rutland, Windsor, and Windham counties.
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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.
Some of us need to relearn the thrush songs anew every year: the sort of ee-o-lay of the wood thrush, followed by a buzz; the longish first note of the hermit thrush followed by a jumble; the downward slide (think V) of the veery.
Late in the evening tonight and through the early hours of the 14th, the Geminid meteor shower will put on a good performance if it’s clear. The new moon will not interfere and these quite reliable meteors come in yellow, green, and blue, as well as white.
Virginia creeper and grapes are foodplants for Abbott’s sphinx moth caterpillars. Large green spots – much like the immature grapes nearby – cover the back of this striking insect. They will pupate soon, so check for them now.
The height of the severed plants in your garden can give a clue to the culprit. Rodents leave roughly inch-tall stumps. Cottontails between 2 and 3 inches. Mature deer between 12 and 16 inches.
This weekend’s cool, May-like weather has been a blessing for those of us who are desperately trying to catch up on our wood.
Turtles are crossing roads. If conditions permit, a helping hand might keep one of them from being hit by a careless vehicle.