Posts Tagged 'Bronx'

Naturalist Notes

Viola canadensis, a native violet.It was cool, so this Robin (Turdus migratorius) was hunkered down on those blue blue eggs.A Red Velvet Mite of the family Trombidiidae. Predators of the leaf-litter zone, as large as a blood-gorged tick and, being mite-y, rather looking like one.So many vocal White-Throated Sparrows (Zonotrichia albicollis) in the Ramble!And a recent sunset.

Blooming

Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica).Rue Anemone (Thalictrum thalictroides).Toothwort (Cardamine).Trillium.Wild Ginger (Asarum canadense), unrelated to ginger root (Zingiber).

Common Goldeneye

Bucephala clangulaYou can almost see the golden eye from here. You can certainly see the white spot on the cheek of this male Bucephala clangula. I don’t see these often: they do not favor the harbor. There were a few dozen off Hunter Island in the Bronx, the western end of Long Island Sound, and the males were doing bits of their head-thrown-back mating dance.

Trivial: Ian Fleming called his Jamaica estate Goldeneye, and named his ridiculous hero after the ornithologist James Bond.

Political: The Democrats have never been a leftist party. Here, an actual leftist anatomizes the party of business that pretends it isn’t. And why such an entity is so dangerous right now in the face of Trumpism.

Enigma

Bubo virginianus

A note on populism. “There is no right [-wing] populism, only intolerance.”

Monday Meadows

meadow1Open these up.meadow2For megapixels of wonder.meadow3And speak not to me of lawns.

Cocktail Hour

Eremnophila aureonotataIs this too much John Cheever-John Updike, drunken wasps getting it on? Above are Thread-waisted Wasps (Eremnophila aureonotata) mating on that pollinator-magnet mountain mint (Pycnanthemum). Like many wasps, the adults eat nectar, but feed their larvae flesh. (OK, now we’ve entered Stephen King territory) These provision their young with caterpillars. Scolia dubiaBlue-winged, a.k.a. Digger Wasp (Scolia dubia) with their distinctive yellow dots on red-orange abdomen. These are all over the city; I walked by a swarm in the middle of a front yard in Park Slope recently. The females dig burrows in search of beetle larvae to feed their young; Green June Bugs and invasive Japanese Beetles are favored.

Snapper

Chelydra serpentinaSnapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina), the smaller of two seen in the water of the native garden at NYBG this weekend.

Note the spotless shell. Compare with another NYBG snap seen two years ago in the Discovery Center pond. Much more growth on the shell of that younger specimen. The huge beastie I’ve seen in Prospect Park’s watercourse a few times over the years has also evinced a spotless shell, which I attribute to chorine in the water (yes, it’s tap water). Here’s a little one in the Prospect Pools. Here’s a tiny one I found crossing the road a few years ago in Massachusetts.
Chelydra serpentinaShell length here 6-7″ long. Love the dinosaur thorns on the tail.


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