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 III2020-12-07 12:44:082020-12-08 12:44:51The tufted titmouse at our feeders (they get taken in at night) has now been joined by another. They rarely used to be here but in the last few years have become reliable companions.
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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.
Still no snow on the ground. Rain-soaked brown leaves cover paths but in the woods mosses and liverworts in many shades of green brighten things up.
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.
Hobblebush leaves are nice in the summer, colorful in autumn, but now, as they unfurl, they might be at their best: an intricate tapestry, white against tan. An elegant tan that we’re probably supposed to call ecru.
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.
A lot of things are described as “growing like a weed.” In our garden the weeds really take it to heart.