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American Black Ducks

Anas rubripesAnas rubripesAnas rubripesAmerican Black Ducks are year-’round birds, but they are now sharing the harbor with our wintering Buffleheads, Gadwall, Wigeon, and Red-breasted Mergansers. Soon, loons and grebes should be seen as well. There’s been a Humpback Whale in the harbor and up the Hudson, too, lately, although this blogger hasn’t seen a tail of it yet.Anas rubripesWearing a piece of the sea… or is it the sky?

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The Baffler, which I highly recommend, has a reading list for dark times like these.

Longleaf Again

Pinus palustrisI’ve written about the Longleaf Pine several times, including in this essay for Humans and Nature, but I’ve never seen a living example of the tree until recently. Alas, it’s just a stripling of 25 years or so of age at NYBG, perhaps 25 feet high.Pinus palustrisBut look at those needles!

On The Rocks

Charadrius vociferusKilldeer (Charadrius vociferus). This one-footed stance is common among shore birds. Charadrius vociferusDid somebody say vociferus? This quintet was silent, but in breeding season Killdeer can be loud!

It’s Thanksgiving, time to remember what we have to be thankful for and stand on both our feet in defense of it. Let me convey my solidarity with those of you eating with Trumpettes today for the sake of family. An ugly mixture of the deplorable, horrible, reckless, foolish, and ignorant have helped elevate a thieving autocrat into unimaginable power. Maybe some of them will come to see how they’ve been taken by a reality TV hack of a con man, maybe not. But I hope you stand your ground in whatever way you deem best. All that’s best in America stands behind you.

Raptor Wednesday

Falco peregrinusA Peregrine (Falco peregrinus) was perched atop the head of the statue of Justice atop Brooklyn’s Borough Hall when I emerged from the R train.Falco peregrinusThe bird remained there as I made some copies, went to the Post Office, and returned to swing around to the chignon-side.Falco peregrinusNot all Justice is blind. We can see the neo-confederate Jeff Sessions, picked by the self-dealing Fraudster-Elect to make sure the Justice Department is corrupted to his ends, in all his hideousness.Falco peregrinusThe bird flew to this cliff face, where I left it to descend back into the subway. Later that day, a Red-tailed Hawk, Merlin, and possible Cooper’s Hawk were all spotted in Green-Wood. And that evening, another Peregrine, perched on top of St. Michael’s, a sight I haven’t seen since the election.

Bigleaf Maple

Acer macrophyllumAcer macrophyllum is one big-leafed maple. Also known as Oregon Maple, these trees of the moist, shady canyons of the Coast Range can have leaves 9″ or more long. The leafstalk can be up to a foot long. Acer macrophyllumJust wow!

And, speaking of wow, check out this intersection of the great naturalist David George Haskell with his state’s loathsome plutocratic toady of a Senator in the woods.

For the love of moth snowstorms

the_moth_snowstorm_for_web_df271fb2-a6f7-4703-9f9a-23ea2dbb7f70_1024x1024A public service announcement: I wrote about Michael McCarthy’s necessary book The Moth Snowstorm for Humans and Nature. I hope you’ll pop over and read it.

Biophilia must be political.

Persistence

Harmonia axyridisHarmonia axyridis on 5th Avenue. At this rate, why even bother taking shelter for the winter?Harmonia axyridisOn the contrary, let’s stay out all day and night…

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In case you missed it in the hullabaloo over Hamilton, on Friday, the President Elect of the United States of American settled the fraud suit against him for his “university” scam. That will cost him $25 million, but I’m sure that means we’ll end up paying it, and so much more, because no greater con man has ever held such power in this land.


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