Apparently they’re now busy raising a bunch of little beavers inside the lodge. Next year we expect the water will begin rising in other marshes along the rail trail.
Go, beavers, go!
A pair of robins picked the best place for their nest:
I disabled the remote control for those spotlights, as we won’t be using them for a while.
Although I’m sure it’s a wonderful nest, robins certainly leave plenty of debris around their construction site:
I can’t figure how to mount a camera close enough for a good view and keep it out of their landing pattern.
A shed snakeskin appeared when I opened the garage door:
The skin sits atop the retaining wall next to the door, on a stone(-like) background with poor contrast: even an empty snake has good camouflage!
The exterior looks like genuine snakeskin:
I didn’t know the interior has an entirely different pattern:
As far as I can tell, the snake was going about its business elsewhere in the yard.
To be fair, there’s some luck involved.
Update: After Mitch nudged me, I found the (somewhat the worse for wear) snakeskin again. The head end was split, much as I described, but the tail end was intact (the snake having pulled out like a finger from a glove) and what I though was the inside of the top was the outside of the bottom, just pushed inward to form a very thin double layer.
Today I Learned … to always look closer!
The Dutchess Rail Trail has gotten far more use in recent months than ever before, with entire families walking along the path:
Almost by definition, though, goslings don’t practice social distancing …
The empty Organ Pipe Mud Dauber Wasp nest popped off the wall with relatively little damage:
The open cells on the back side show the wasps don’t waste any effort on putting mud where it’s not needed:
Cracking it in half shows the rugged walls between the cell columns:
Several cells contained three or four (thoroughly dead!) spiders apiece, evidently the result of un-hatched eggs:
Each successful cell contained a brittle capsule wrapped in a thin cocoon, surrounded by fragments of what used to be spiders, with an exit hole chewed in the side:
I regret not weighing the whole affair, as all that mud represents an astonishing amount of heavy hauling and careful work by one or two little wasps!
The groundhog responsible for trimming the lawn greenery in our area has discovered the long-disused driveway salt barrel:
There’s always another appointment on the calendar, though:
A busy critter with no time to waste!
The furry engineers in charge of maintenance laid several layers of branches along the breast of their dam:
Their pond is maybe nine inches deeper than a few weeks ago. The rail trail has little danger of flooding, even as the water creeps closer, because the roadbed is higher than the far shoreline.
Go, beavers, go!