Lake Larvae

Larval…
…something, or other.
Many of them, in fact. I think these might be lake midges, in the family Chironomidae.
And most of them seem to be just the larval husks, the exuviae, of the larval form.
The westerly breeze pushed them all to one part of the Sylvan Water. There were a heck of a lot of them: in this shot, they make up the cloudy looking area reaching uptimes to two from the shoreline.
This an adult non-biting midge. Same crew? They’re around, but nowhere near the numbers the water would suggest. They may spread, though. The other evening at sunset I noticed a cluster swarming at 4th floor level by Sunset Park, six or seven blocks as the midge flies from the Valley Water.

Raptor Wednesday

A Red-tail on the roof.
Same building. We call it the solar building because of the solar panels on the roof. The female American Kestrel, on the left, is vocalizing. She’s noisy.
In real life (vision), they’re tiny on this drain pipe housing. Even this is telephoto and cropped.
A little closer, across the street.

Eggs & Memories

Slug eggs! I think. Quite small.
I didn’t notice them at first, as I was photographing this beetle under a log.
Some beetles are shy. Only later did I see the spheres in the photograph.

I’ve been delving into the archives to see what else has turned up in early Aprils past:

2018: Brooklyn Kestrels!
2017: Some turtles in oldest Virginia.
2016: Accipiter bath.
2015: Lores of an egret.
2012: Leaves of three.

This is a must-read on thinking during a pandemic.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Sapsucker sap-sucking.

Previously tapped holes. And even more previously tapped ones seen further to right on this old yew.

And this yellow belly we hear tell of? Subtle, and not shown to advantage in this under-tree light. The bird was named with corpse in hand, as used to typically be the case. Sharp-shinned Hawk, anyone? Note that any invertebrates attracted to the sap flowing in these sap mines may also get slurped up by the YBSS.

Excursions

I’m not getting out much here in isolation/lock-down/quarantine — all these words are inexact.

And is it ever a bummer! For this is a profoundly rich time of year, with life-forms a-popping up all over, just waiting to be ogled. But even in limited excursion mode lately, some of my nature jones is being met. The swallows, for instance, have returned. (Despite our best efforts even!) Here’s a Barn Swallow showing how to species distance from the Tree Swallows.
This stunning beetle wanted nothing to do with the paparazzi.
So this is what an Ailanthus bud looks like.
An Eastern Yellowjacket. Possibly a queen, for she certainly looked freshly emergent.
Redbud.
Northern Flicker.
Wet violet.

Like Buttah

Jelly fungus on downed tree limbs. Exidia genus-mates here, I believe. On the left, Amber Jelly Fungus, E. recisa.
On the right, Black Witches’ Butter Fungus, E. glandulosa.
Genus Tremella. I first thought Witches’ Butter, but there are a couple of similar ones in this genus.
More Black Witches’ Butter. This downed stick had a number of tiny invertebrates on it that I only noticed in photographs, a reminder that fungi is food and habitat for other lifeforms besides human mushroom collectors.

***

You’ve heard of disaster capitalism, and now we have pandemic capitalism: an orgy of deregulation, sweetheart deals, and massive corruption under cover of national emergency. Do you still have Republican friends? Why?

Magnolias


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