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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Loggers on a neighboring property worked all day today. Suitable weather for logging is not as reliable as it once was, so holidays take a back seat.
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.
Brooks that often dry up in late summer around here have dried up. It is getting closer to late summer than I like to acknowledge,and it has been abnormally droughty.
After waiting for a long time for a warm sunny day that didn’t happen, serviceberry buds decided it’s time to open. Roadsides are now very pretty.
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.
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.