Posts Tagged Wildlife
A young Coopers Hawk swooped across the yard, landed on a branch, and proceeded to dismantle something yummy, scattering little bits on the driveway below. One piece fluttered down like a feather, but, after the hawk flew off, we found this:
It wasn’t a feather, it was an entire wing!
A few feet away, we found another:
Not that there was any doubt, but these parts clinched the identification:
Some days earlier, we admired eight Praying Mantises on the decorative grasses and bushes out front. Perhaps it was this one:
Or this one, a few feet away:
We don’t know what, if any, the difference between brown and green wing covers might indicate. Age? Gender? Attitude? Skill level?
It’s a food chain out there!
A recent Amazon purchase of three 3 lb bags of walnuts from a known-good seller arrived with many damaged nuts:
The damage matches what I read about Walnut Husk Fly infestations: shriveled kernels and terrible taste.
In round numbers, I found 8 oz of damaged nuts in each 3 lb bag, enough to ruin the entire batch. The seller immediately refunded the purchase price for all three bags, so there’s that.
It’s definitely not one of the counterfeit products plaguing Amazon, but I wonder why that lot didn’t fail incoming inspection.
I’m loathe to buy more walnuts for a while, though.
Memo to Self: Always inspect incoming purchases, even from reputable sellers!
The Butterfly Bush in front of the house attracts all kinds of insects, including Monarch Butterflies (shown here on the Goldenrod planted in the garden):
This year, the bush also attracted a Praying Mantis:
Then lunchtime happened:
A closer look:
Spotted along Robinson Lane:
A closer look at the same number of pixels:
The little one way over on the left is definitely having an adventure!
I contented myself by practicing my slow-riding skills while they ambled along and, eventually, moved far to the left.
A few hours later, they seemed to be having a picnic in the grass:
We parted as friends, which is always pleasant.
Their offspring began emerging in early July, with our first picture on 3 July. I’ll leave the image file dates in place so you can reach your own conclusions:
We think a titmouse (a known predator) pecked some holes, including the upper hole on the middle tube, as they seemed to expose solid (and presumably inedible) chitin from the outside:
More holes appeared in a few days:
The irregular spacing along each tube suggests they don’t emerge in the reverse order of installation:
Three days later:
Two weeks after the first holes appeared:
No more holes have appeared since then, so it seems one young wasp emerges every few days.
This nest produced about a dozen wasps, with perhaps as many launch failures. We’ll (try to) remove it and examine the contents in a few months.
We expect they’ll start build nests all over the house in another month …
The turkey hen who once had nine chicks, then seven, now has only two:
We haven’t seen the fox since it nailed the previous chick, but it may be responsible for taking a chick a day, every day, for a week.
We wonder if she misses the rest of her brood as much as we do …
Taken through two layers of 1950s window glass, zoomed all the way in, with a phone camera.