December, 2019: Describe your walk by adding a comment below

Each time you go out and make observations for this project, describe your walk by adding a comment to this post. Include the date, distance walked, and categories that you used for this walk.

Suggested format:
Date. Place. Distance walked today. Total distance for this project.
Categories.
Brief description of the area, what you saw, what you learned, who was with you, or any other details you care to share.

Publicado por erikamitchell erikamitchell, 01 de dezembro de 2019, 11:37 TARDE

Comentários

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12/1/19. Adamant, VT. 1.8 miles today
Categories: birds, arthropods

This morning I bundled up for my weekly walk in Adamant. The temperature was 4F at 9 AM, so I waited until 11 AM. By then it was a balmy 15F. I stopped in at the co-op to see the "Little Shop Upstairs", our Christmas art pop-up store. They were having tea and cookies for opening day, but I didn't see any gluten free cookies, so I headed back out to search for birds. There wasn't much flying, but I managed to spot a couple of chickadees by the bird feeder across from the store. The sunflowers in a friend's garden also had a bunch of chickadees, plus a woodpecker in the corner. I walked out to the end of my usual route, but only managed to catch a blue jay, no other species. I also walked up to the Point on Adamant Pond. On the way out to the Point, I was delighted to find a spider on the snow. It was crawling, but barely, and patiently posed for a few photos. No action at all out on the lake, which is thoroughly frozen over and quite ready for skiing and ice fishing.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/2/19. Berlin, VT. 3 miles today
Categories: emergent weeds, trees

This afternoon I managed to squeeze in a quick walk in Berlin near the airport just before dusk at 4 PM. With several inches of snow on the ground and not many trees near the road, there were very few unplanned plants to photograph. Still, I managed to find a few weeds standing above the snow, including Queen Anne's lace, chicory, bull thistle, burdock, mullein, sweet clover, and cow vetch. Trees for today were box elder, white pine, paper birch, buckthorn, basswood, and sugar maple. I had hoped to find some insects on the fresh snow, but the best I could come up with was honeysuckle aphid. Not even any goldenrod stem galls today. For tracks, all I found were some turkey tracks near the medical offices. Hmmm. I searched for unintentional plants outside the airport entrance and found 2 bad intentions (burning bush and barberry), and just a little cow vetch.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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Hi all! I haven't had any time to post here but just wanted to say it's very impressive how much more ground you've covered Erika! I find myself using this data when doing wetland mapping stuff, too. It's a real resource.
Much of the walking i have been doing is back and forth in the house with a fussy baby, so most of my iNat over the last few months has been at work and with the field season done that's winding down. Next year!

Publicado por charlie 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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Enjoy the time with the baby, Charlie! How exciting to have 2 kids now. I had a great time chatting with Holly at the opening of the bike path. She's a cool kid!

I'm back to trying to walk new roads that I haven't walked before. So yes, lots more territory to cover. Glad to hear the data is useful for something!

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/3/19. Hill St Ext, Berlin, VT. 2.3 miles today
Categories: trees, fleshy fruits, galls

This afternoon I took a brisk walk along Hill St Ext, or, as Google currently calls it, Hill Saint Ext. I hoped to find some arthropods on the fresh snow, as I'm sure I would have in Calais, but the snow had been plowed and was messy, so it was hard to pick out any living black specks on it. Today's walk was a whole lot more interesting than yesterday's, even though I was probably barely 2 miles distant. More woods, more trees, more life.

For trees today, I found red maple, sugar maple, balsam fir, white pine, Scots pine, hemlock, red spruce, white cedar, beech, black cherry, sumac, paper birch, gray birch, white ash, elm, and alder. Fleshy fruits were buckthorn, highbush cranberry , grapes, European barberry, multiflora rose, and honeysuckle. Galls were 2 kinds of goldenrod galls, plus some big honking galls throughout a Scots pine plantation. I think they might be Trisetacus pini, which is typically a European species, but GBIF shows a few specimens observed in North America. Unfortunately, my photos of the pine galls are lousy, so I don't think they can be confirmed. Tracks for today were turkey, lots of them.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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That's so neat that you got to talk to Holly at that walk.

Publicado por charlie 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/4/19. Portal Rd, Middlesex, VT. 2.1 miles today
Categories: 100 paces, galls, fleshy fruits

Today I walked the second part of Portal Rd outside of Montpelier. It was an out-and-back walk, so I decided to try shooting a new woody species every 100 paces on the way out. More or less. On the way back, I searched and searched for arthropods on the snow, but no luck. For trees I found balsam fir, yellow birch, Japanese knotweed, box elder, sugar maple, white pine (dead), red spruce, hop hornbeam, black cherry, hemlock, beech, apple, white ash, sumac, crabapple, white birch, basswood, alder, and hawthorn. Galls today were goldenrod flower gall, goldenrod stem gallhoneysuckle gall, willow cone galls, and willow stem galls. Fleshy fruits were highbush cranberry, and bittersweet nightshade. All the grapes were gone, and for once, I found no buckthorn. The tracks of the day were white-tailed deer, and I actually remembered to bring my measuring stick so I didn't have to shoot my boot beside the deer tracks.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/5/19. Belknap Rd, Berlin, VT. 1.7 miles today
Categories: arthropods on snow, trees

This afternoon I took a walk under the snow drops near Berlin Pond. Conditions were perfect for arthropoding--just enough fresh snow to make a new white layer, but not enough for the plow trucks to be out. Just a minute or two after I left my car, I found my first arthropod, a fly. I managed to find 3 flies, lots of spiders, and a micro moth during the walk. I was concentrating so much on the ground looking for insects that I hardly saw any plants. Still, Belknap Rd was quite nice, and worth returning to in the summer when plowing isn't an issue. As I was heading up the road, I met up with a very bow-legged guy with one eye who was also out for a walk. He told me that he used to live up this road, and that even though there was a gate across it, it was still a public road. But the police have a shooting range along it, which is why the gate. Hmmm. Beyond the gate, the road was not plowed, but the snow wasn't too deep yet and there was a clear foot path. Lots of hemlock forest with yellow birch and a river running through it.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/6/19. Culver Hill Rd, Middlesex, VT. 2.5 miles today
Categories: trees, fleshy fruits

This afternoon I went exploring up Culver Hill Rd, which turned out to be a quite scenic hill along a stream to the west of Wrightsville Reservoir. The road wound through a hemlock forest in the lower reaches, then a few more trees were added to the mix. I hunted and hunted for arthropods on the fresh snow, but no luck today. I think perhaps the flurries were too thick for them. Trees today were hemlock, white ash, paper birch, balsam fir, speckled alder, beech, yellow birch, white pine, apple, box elder, trembling aspen, red spruce, sugar maple, red maple, and staghorn sumac. Fleshy fruits were grapes. No luck with tracks today--the old ones were covered by new flakes and there weren't any new ones yet.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/7/19. Mallory Brook Trail, East Montpelier, VT. 1.8 miles today
Categories: arthropods, fleshy fruits

This morning I met up with our Saturday morning hiking group to walk the Mallory Brook Trail in East Montpelier. There were 6 of us walkers this morning, which was a good thing since, as we remembered too late, it is still hunting season. Fortunately, it was just musket season--rifle season is over, thank goodness. But the property is marked hunters welcome, so it was just crawling with hunters. As a large, loud group, we probably weren't at too much risk, but I'm sure we annoyed some hunters as we walked through their action. It's just so hard to keep out of the woods!

With the fresh snow yesterday, it was prime hunting season for arthropods on snow. We found 2 green caterpillars (fallen off of trees?), 2 Acleris micro moths, and lots of Tetragnatha spiders. We also found some grapes, lots of buckthorn fruits, and some highbush cranberries back at the parking lot. Plenty of tracks today, including deer, snowshoe hair, and squirrels.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/8/19. Adamant, VT. 1.6 miles today
Categories: birds, tracks, frosted fruits

This morning I took my weekly bird walk in Adamant. Once again, the temperature was hovering around 0F in the morning, so I waited until 2 digits appeared before I ventured out. There wasn't much stirring, though. A few blue jays and chickadees were hanging around at feeders. I finally managed to catch a chickadee eating seeds in a tamarack tree, and a bluejay picking through a tent caterpillar nest. A pair of goldfinches flew by, but I wasn't able to catch them. Instead, I turned my attention to the frosted fruits, and shot some honeysuckle, highbush cranberries, and grapes. For tracks today, I found white-tailed deer, squirrel, mouse?, and something that left a pile in the road.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/9/19 Barre, VT. 2.9 miles today
Categories: trees, fleshy fruits, tracks

This afternoon I drove out to Barre for a walk in the freezing drizzle. I am exploring some of the blank areas on the map, and this one was quite, quite blank. I found nothing unexpected, but it was still nice to get out. On the map, it looked like I'd be on dirt roads, but unfortunately, the second half of my route was on pavement. The posted speed limit was 40 mph, but folks were all trying to go at least 60--if they could get their cars to go that fast.

Trees today were basswood, gray birch, sugar maple, buckthorn, white ash, Scots pine, white cedar, beech, hemlock, Norway spruce, speckled alder, ninebark, tamarack, apple, elm, yellow birch, fir, white pine, paper birch, trembling aspen, hop hornbeam, and box elder. Tracks were squirrels, corvids (crow?), deer, and turkey. For fruits, I found grapes, highbush cranberry, and honeysuckle. I guess there were some surprises--I found a witchhazel bush and also a lilac bush, both seemingly wild.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/10/19. Montpelier Bike Path, Montpelier VT. 1.9 miles today
Categories: fruits, galls, arthropods

This afternoon I took a short walk down the Montpelier bike path from the new end by Gallison Hill Rd to Hunger Mt Co-op. Parts were slushy, parts very icy, and parts plowed. They're still trying to figure out how much winter grooming they are going to do on the trail. I found two kinds of goldenrod stem galls and some crabapples. I also found some basswood fruits and some poison ivy fruits way up in a tree. Usually, our poison ivy doesn't climb much around here, but I guess it must be very happy along the river. I was also delighted to find a harvestman crawling along the snow.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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i noticed that about the trail too. Either maintain it for winter walking, or don't plow it and try to groom it somehow for xc ski. I Guess they will get it straightened out, one problem is that center section which presumably they have to plow since i think it goes to someone's house too, right?

Publicado por charlie 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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No more house there. They condemned it. Then took it down. I think that was all part of making the trail happen. It was the middle part that was sheer ice, driven on but not plowed. The sidewalk part from Hunger Mt was plowed clear. The sidewalk part after the bridge was ignored but not driven on, so it was slushy rather than icy.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/11/19. Bean Rd, Plainfield VT. 3.3 miles today
Categories: trees, galls

This afternoon, I set off to explore Gonyeau Rd in Plainfield, but realized when I got close that that road doesn't really go through, even though it looks like a road in the satellite view. On the other hand, Bean Rd does go through to Marshfield, even though the satellite view shows it as a trail. Actually, the last part of the road isn't drivable, at least not by a Prius, so I guess it is a trail with tracks running down the center. But still more of a road than Gonyeau. Bean was a lovely road, surprisingly flat, I think maybe the only flat road in Plainfield. Trees today were beech, fur, hop hornbeam, red spruce, hemlock, white ash, basswood, paper birch, white cedar, white pine, yellow birch, sugar maple, striped maple, elm, alder, apple, trembling aspen, and black cherry. Galls were willow cone gall, goldenrod stem gall, goldenrod flower gall, and alder tongue gall. Tracks were white-tailed deer, exceptionally clear in the frozen sand. The surprise of the day was the complete lack of Japanese knotweed or buckthorn.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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ah, yeah it didn't really make sense to have one house there and that huge river-buffer-destroying road just for that, if it was avoidable

Publicado por charlie 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/12/19. Berlin Pond Rd, Berlin VT. 2.2 miles today
Categories: trees, galls, fleshy fruits

This afternoon I went hunting for a couple of roads that appear on Google maps to the east edge of Berlin Pond. But the roads aren't for real--they're just driveways. That left me on Berlin Pond Rd, so I took a brisk walk along the southern reaches of the pond. Still scenic. I found elm, beech, white cedar, sumac, yellow birch, white birch, basswood, alder, black ash, white ash, buckthorn, hawthorn, white pine, sugar maple, black cherry, red spruce, and hemlock. For fruits, I found highbush cranberry, crabapples, grapes, apples, winterberry, and barberry. Plus some Japanese lantern, probably cultivated, in the ditch along the road. Galls today were alder tongue gall, goldenrod stem gall, goldenrod flower gall, and willow cone gall. I also found some clear squirrels tracks and some deer tracks.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/13/19. East Hill Rd, Plainfield, VT. 2.4 miles today
Categories: trees, fleshy fruits, galls

This afternoon I went back out to Plainfield to walk another stretch of East Hill Rd. This is a very long road--I think it will take 4-5 sessions to walk the entire length. There are wonderful long views from this road on good weather days. But not so long today. For trees today, I found beech, yellow birch, white birch, white ash, white cedar, elm, black cherry, hop hornbeam, hemlock, red spruce, Scots pine, buckthorn, sugar maple, striped maple, trembling aspen, fir, staghorn sumac, tamarack, and alder. Fruits were grape (plus buckthorn and sumac). Galls were willow pine gall and goldenrod stem gall. The tracks of the day were white-tailed deer in some very dirty snow.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/14/19. George Rd, Calais, VT. 9 miles today
Categories: birds, fleshy fruits, tracks, fungi

Today was the Christmas bird count in Calais. Last year for the Christmas bird count, I walked about 10 miles. Then 2 days later, I nearly collapsed after walking less than half that distance. It's been a challenging year, but I think I can finally say I'm back and well on my way to recovery. The key seems to be a gluten-free diet. I probably have had celiac for years, if not my entire life. Perhaps it was the stress of too much walking last fall that finally pushed me over the edge with too much inflammation. Or maybe the chronic gut inflammation just caught up with me. In any case, this was a major milestone for me today, to be able to walk as far as I cared to without feeling weak.

It was a lovely day for a walk, 35F and pouring rain, or was it freezing rain? I was glad for crampons and my measuring/hiking stick. I walked with a naturalist from Montpelier, a birding expert who could call in flocks of chickadees and their friends. We saw lots of chickadees, got surrounded by golden-crowned kinglets, and found 75 starlings by the dairy farm. But due to the rain, I only had my underwater camera with me, so the only birds I could actually shoot were some chickadees and the flock of turkeys. We also found lots of fungi, including some birch polypores, red coral fungus, witch's butter, oyster mushrooms, artist's conk, Peniophora rufa, a little yellow asco, and some Tremella foliosa. I shot plenty of coyote tracks, also some deer, grouse, and red squirrel tracks. Fruits today were highbush cranberry, buckthorn, grapes, common barberry, bittersweet nightshade, and black cherries.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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Yikes! My wife can't eat gluten either, she doesn't have full blown celiacs but gets inflammation issues

Publicado por charlie 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/15/19. Adamant, VT. 1.6 miles today
Categories: birds

This morning I went for my regular birdwalk in downtown Adamant. Not many birds were out, but I did manage to catch a few chickadees. And then there were some mystery sparrows that I couldn't identify while I was on the walk. But when I saw the photos on the computer up close, I could see that they were tree sparrows. Exciting! Tracks for the day were some deer prints in the sand.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/16/19. Gallison Hill Rd, Montpelier, VT. 2.7 miles today
Categories: trees, fleshy fruits, galls

This afternoon I went exploring up Gallison Hill Rd simply because I can't believe they are really considering extending the bike path up this way. The road is a steep paved road up to the regional highschool. Currently, it has a shoulder that varies from 6" to 2' wide and has heavy traffic. It's hard to imagine it as safe or pleasant for anyone to ride a bike on or walk on. Today's walk confirmed that impression--I'll have to see it to believe it. A bike path? On this road? Hunh?

For trees today, I found sumac, white cedar, white pine, box elder, beech, fir, hemlock, sugar maple, gray birch, paper birch, elm, white ash, and trembling aspen. Fleshy fruits were buckthorn, crabapple, apple, grape, and highbush cranberry. Galls were goldenrod stem gall and honeysuckle gall. And the tracks of the day were deer and squirrel (probably gray since it's near the city).

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/17/19. Brookfield Rd, Berlin, VT. 2.2 miles today
Categories: arthropods on snow, trees, fleshy fruits

This afternoon I took a walk along the far end of Berlin Pond. Once again, the internet maps show roads that don't exist. According to the map, they show Brookfield Rd looping around the far end of Berlin Pond. But the first thing you see on Brookfield Rd is a Dead End sign. The road was quite scenic and quiet (except for the plow truck doing its job). At the end was a small farm with sheep milling about under Christmas lights in the snow, and a friendly sheepdog. The road continued on past the farm as an unplowed trail. I went up the trails a little ways, but it was starting to get dark. This is another road that's definitely worth re-visiting in the spring when there's no snow.

The great thing about the snow was all the bugs! We had fresh snow in the morning, but by late afternoon when I was walking the snow was slowing down, and the bugs were out. I found several Tetragnatha spiders, a brown caterpillar, and a snow-born boreus. Trees today were white ash, elm, black cherry, beech, hemlock, paper birch, sugar maple, hop hornbeam, white pine, red spruce, yellow birch, and fir. Fruits were grapes, buckthorn, apple, highbush cranberry, common barberry, blue cohosh, and sumac. No animal tracks--the snow was too fresh.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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I think i saw that class 4 road under similar conditions and also didn't go down it. Probably some rich affinity stuff. I've been looking for these bugs on snow and haven't found any yet!

Publicado por charlie 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/18/19. George Rd, Calais VT. 1.6 miles today
Categories: arthropods on snow

This afternoon I set off for a walk under heavy snow flurries. I had thought about going to Plainfield for my walk, but the snow was already too thick for me to take my car out. Instead, I began by walking down the driveway to the mailbox, where I found a note from the UPS guy saying that the Fedex guy had left a package for us at our neighbor's mailbox a half mile down the road. So my route was decided.

Despite the heavy snow, the bugs were out, big time. I returned to the house for my macro lens and standalone flash light. I found 5 spiders, including 2 Tetragnathas, 2 Pityohyphantes, and another species of spider. In addition, I also found 2 Boreus flies, a micro moth, and something that looked beetlish, but I wasn't quite sure. And a Trichocera fly. What a great hunt! The tracks of the day were squirrels, quite fresh (otherwise, they'd be gone in minutes due to the heavy snow).

Hope you got out arthropod hunting today, Charlie! It was a perfect day for it.

Publicado por erikamitchell 7 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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I can't believe I missed a whole month of journey! I'm going to try to catch up. I've also been trying to fill in blank spaces in the map, but in my home town, as I'm going to talk to my daughter's 7th grade class about biodiversity in town and I want as many data points as I can get. But there's a reason they are blank, it's mostly landscaped yards, so I'm getting lots of wild garlic and English plantain, and not a ton of other things. But we've not had much snow yet, just four days of stunningly beautiful ice.

I've never seen much in the way of arthropods on snow, though I did once find a whole patch of snow fleas. I'll have to look when (if) we eventually get some.

I do sometimes have Google Maps issues as well, most recently on the rescue squad when we were sent to a little side road that was actually about 1000 feet from where Google told us it was. Rather unexpected here where Google has driven its camera car up and down every single tiny street in the area.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-4-19. West Brook and Washington Valley around Mt. Horeb and Argonne Farm, Bridgewater, NJ. 2 miles today, 637.25 miles total
Category: fruiting

I walked down the boardwalk along West Branch Middle Brook, then up through a field (where I found an illegal hunting stand/deer feeding station) and then along several small roads until I got back tot he West Brook boardwalk trail. In fruit were spicebush, winterberry, blackhaw, flowering dogwood, red cedar, and (unusually) trumpet creeper.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-7-19. Chimney Rock and Washington Valley Parks, Martinsville, NJ. 1.25 miles today, 638.5 miles total
categories: moss, lichen, leaves, bark, fruit.

I walked in a circle I've never walked before but mostly on pieces of trails I've done at various other times. Through the woods along a brook, down to the reservoir, and then up over the "mountain". Interesting things I found included lots of moss, a sawtooth oak leaf (must be planted), mockernut hickory, American pennyroyal, and giraffe skin fungus.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-10-19. Mayflower, April, and Vosseller, Martinsville, NJ. 2.25 miles today, 640.75 miles total
Category: naturally occurring

I walked these side streets just to the west of my house, in a circle I'd not actually done in years, including a short little cul-de-sac that I've not walked up since the 1990s. It's all suburban yards, so not thrilling. I saw two squirrels and a downy woodpecker. There were basilica orb weaver eggs in a shrub, a blooming witchhazel, a goldenrod gall (both by a stream), everlasting pea, and a spruce with adelgid galls.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-11-19 Woodlot Park, Monmouth Junction, NJ. 0.25 miles today, 641 miles total
Category: moss and lichen

We had a lovely little snowstorm this morning, just an inch or two, which stuck to every branch of every tree and looked amazingly beautiful, and even better, did not need to be plowed. I drove down to get Molly from college for winter break, and stopped on the way home to stretch my legs and check out this little park. It's got sandy soil rather than the clay by me, and there was lots of lichen on the ground under the rapidly melting snow, which is something you almost never see in my town. Otherwise not much of note: a jelly ear fungus, and a little plant I've not figured out yet.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-12-19 Diamond Hill Rd, Berkeley Heights, and south Ave and Mindowaskin Park, Westfield, NJ. 1.0 mile today, 642 miles total
Category: unintentional plants

A minorly frustrating day: I went to the pulmonologist for a check up and parked in their overflow parking, which is woodchips over dirt (covered with about a half inch of snow). I figured the mud was frozen. I was wrong. I got so stuck my son and husband had to come push me out. While I was waiting for them I checked out the surrounding woods: red oak. black locust, beech, white oak, black oak, black birch, and moss peaking through the melting snow.

Once i was free I drove up to Westfield as it was the only place with an early afternoon Weight Watchers meeting. I was still early (I'd originally planned to go for a real walk between the two meetings) and so I walked around the back of the shopping mall, where there were train tracks: Amur honeysuckle, ivy, bittersweet, Japanese honeysuckle, Paulownia, Catalpa, Norway maple, rose, greenbriar, black locust, box elder.

Then I went to a local park to try to get a walk in, only to get a call that I'd left a book at the WW meeting. But I'd taken a few photos by the brook before I left: jumpseed, burdock, wineberry, rose of Sharon, autumn clematis. After that I gave up and went grocery shopping.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-14-19. Dock Watch Hollow, Blazier, Mustang, and Horseshoe Roads, Warren, NJ. 3.25 miles today, 645.25 miles total.
Category: naturally occurring

I walked up the hill from my house today, and into a neighborhood I'd not walked in since I had kids, over 20 years ago. It's been a long time since I could walk three miles without sitting down.

The start of the walk is through what used to be a lovely hemlock grove and now is a mixed forest. After that all suburban lawns. The day was very foggy, gray and misty, I had to use an umbrella to keep the camera dry most of the time.

When I first started out I spotted little bits of Physcia lichen on sticking-out bits of bark on a black oak tree. I though to myself that it must have dripped down from above and maybe that's how the lichen gets established in a new spot. But then one of the bits moved! It turned out all the round bits were debris-carrying lacewing larvae, walking up the tree trunk! and there was a second tree further down the road also covered with them. I've been looking since and not seen them again, even on the same trees.

Other interesting finds included Virginia waterleaf, blooming witchhazel, Virginia saxifrage, adelgid galls on spruce, and my first ever (that I recognized) holly olive (planted, obviously).

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-15-19. Colonial Crossing, Warren, NJ. 1.25 miles today, 646.5 miles total
Category: naturally occurring

Another grey and damp day. I walked through an office complex that has a couple patches of woods and then along a powerline cut. this was all very standard disturbed land species, but somewhat unusual were moth mullein, mugwort and goldenrod stem galls, and virgin's bower.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-16-19. Route 206 Hillsborough and Patriot's Stadium, Bridgwater, NJ. 1 mile today, 647.5 miles total.
Category: naturally occurring.

I walked twice today, first before a doctor's appointment and second after doing some Christmas shopping. The first was along some lawns and a corporate cache basin. The most interesting thing here was a slightly reblooming cherry tree. There was also teasel and a basilica orbweaver web.

The second section was along the overgrown verge between a senior citizens center and the stadium parking lot, then along the train tracks at the back of the lot. By far the most interesting thing here was a narrow winged mantis ootheca.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-18-19. Main St., Somerville, and Helen St., Warren, NJ. 2.0 miles today, 649.5 miles total.
Category: naturally occurring.

We had an ice storm, and every tree in town was covered in ice. It was still there the next day (this day), but when I drove down the hill to Somerville there was nothing. I walked a bit after a meeting in town and happened across a patch of rough bedstraw, something I rarely see.

But in the afternoon Molly and I walked together on a road in town I'd never walked before, and took in the icy spectacle. It was fun to photograph familiar plants all encased in ice. Our favorites were: andromeda, flowering dogwood, blooming witchhazel and reblooming forsythia (both with flowers fully iced over), tulip tree fruit, privet berries, birch catkins, burning bush fruit, and spruce cones.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-19-19. Scherman-Hoffman Preserve, Bernards, NJ. 0.75 miles today, 650.25 miles total.
Category: recognizable through the ice

Molly and I went up to this reserve to check out the ice that was still here, and now the sun was shining dazzlingly on it. I'd told her it was an Audubon Preserve, but she'd heard "Autobahn" and was rather confused.

Once again, the fun part was seeing everyday plants all iced over. Her absolute favorite was linden viburnum berries with frozen red juice dripping from them, and mine was aster flower remains like little glass balls with flowers inside. Also pretty were coneflower fruit, evening primrose, bergamot, bittersweet fruit, and clethra fruit. Oddly none of the pokeberries had any ice on them, maybe the dark color of them melted it sooner?

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-21-19. Mountain View Rd., Warren, NJ. 0.75 miles today, 651 miles total.
Category: unintentional plants

Another gray day and drippy. The ice was nearly all gone, though there was a bit of fresh frost in spots. This was a fairly busy road with no shoulder, one side all lawns, the other overgrown woods that used to belong to an insurance company headquarters. There were oak shothole miner holes and basilica orbweaver eggs. The witchhazel is mostly done blooming now, the ice seems to have done it in. I found some hazel, which is unusual here, and one of the catkins was deformed and forked, I wonder what causes that. Otherwise your standard disturbed soil plants.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-22-19. Ehlens Brook, Warren, NJ. 0.5 miles today, 651.5 miles total.
Category: naturally occuring

Another gray and foggy day. Molly and I went for a walk in these woods along a stream. There's supposed to be a path here, but this was the third time I was in this park and I've never found one. We followed the brook and then climbed a hill, and were never entirely out of sight houses. We found spotted wintergreen, beechdrops, that fungus that stains wood blue-green, and little brown fingers of fungus growing out of the bark of a fallen log.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-25-19. Dock Watch Hollow and Mt. Horeb Roads, Warren, NJ. 2. 0 miles today, 653.5 miles total.
Category: unintentional plants.

After the presents were open but before our family made it to our house for the rest of the presents and lunch, I walked up the hill from my house and along the route they'd be coming in on, with the idea that my sister could pick me up on the way, and I'd get to sections I'd not walked before as they are too far for me to do an out-and-back. And that was just how it worked. This is mostly lawns, so not a lot of interest, but there was some very neglected coralberry and lots of interesting moss on an old sign.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-28-19. Pyramid Mountain, Boonton, NJ. 1.75 miles today, 655.25 miles total
Category: whatever I could ID.

It was a beautiful, sunny day,I wanted to walk somewhere new, and it was Saturday, so anywhere that allowed hunting would be closed to hikers. But Pyramid Mountain doesn't. It was also packed. So I avoided the main route (to Tripod Rock) and took a side path into a swamp, then up a little hill and back, in thick woods virtually the whole time (except a little bit of marsh).

Unusual species for me included yellow birch, what might have been Goldie's wood fern (if so, a new species for me), some kind of white finger fungus growing out of a very rotten log, a fungus that looked a little like a brain, mile-a-minute, maleberry, a clubmoss, indian pipes, that fungus that makes wood blue-green, sanicle, and something that might be an unusual violet.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-29-19. Liberty State Park, Jersey City, NJ. 3.0 miles today. 658.25 miles total.
Category: naturally occurring.

Molly and I headed out to, essentially, the Statue of Liberty ferry dock and then walked along the warf and through some wet woods to the beach and back, stopping at a diner on the way back to the car for a late lunch. It was overcast and threatening rain but we stayed dry.

There were a lot of birds on the water and I wished I'd brought my long lens. But I was able to photograph and ID my first ever gadwalls and my first horned grebe, as well as brants, black ducks, buffleheads, Canada geese, and ring billed gulls. There was at least one other bird that was just a dark splotch with my pocket camera.

The most interesting shell was a Baltic macoma. We also found ribbed mussles; surf, hard, jackknife and soft shell clams; and oysters. Also there was a sponge and some red algae, and, oddly, a water chestnut.

Interesting plants were a fruiting morning glory, elder, Atriplex, several willows, highbush cranberry (unusual for me), Amorpha fruticosa, what might be a Rorippa, big toothed aspen, cottonwood, and lots of cut-leaved blackberry, but some standard as well. Also there were black locust stem galls.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-30-19. Lenape and Heritage Dr., Warren, NJ. 1.75 miles today, 660 miles total
Category: naturally occurring

Drizzling but not freezing, still not the most pleasant day to walk. I checked out a new neighborhood I'd not walked before in town. All yards but a few overgrown spots. There was some jelly ear fungus and a lot of moss I can't ID. Also lesser swine-cress, which I don't see often.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12-31-19. Chestnut and Elm Streets, Stirling, NJ. 1.25 miles today, 661.25 miles total.
Category: naturally occurring

After a Weight Watchers meeting in a new location I took a walk, first over a block to the local swimming pond and then back and around the block where the church was located. Mostly this was lawns, but across from the pond was an overgrown wooded bank. Not a lot of surprises, but there was pennyroyal, nipplewort, and some nice mosses.

Publicado por srall 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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Congrats on a 3+ mile day! What a fantastic achievement! What a joy to be able to walk and walk! And thank goodness for railroad tracks when you're looking for something wild. I loved the story about the lacewing larvae! And iced plants make a great category for searching. I should try that one when I get back to Vermont.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/19/19. Hill St Extension, Berlin, VT. Mileage:
Categories: trees, invasives, fleshy fruits, birds

This afternoon I walked a stretch of Hill St Extension, the last part I needed to complete the entire road from downtown Montpelier to the west side of Berlin. For trees, I found basswood, paper birch, apple, white ash, American elm, white pine, black cherry, red oak, white cedar, sumac, sugar maple, beech, Scots pine, and hemlock. Fleshy fruits were grapes, buckthorn, crabapples, and highbush cranberry (something I see practically every day...). Multiflora rose was another fleshy fruit, but I classified it with the invasives, which also included honeysuckle, and Japanese knotweed today. Birds were a large flock of turkeys plus a Northern cardinal. And the tracks for the day were white-tailed deer and squirrels.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/20/19. Fowler Rd, Plainfield, VT. Mileage:
Categories: trees, fleshy fruits, galls

This afternoon I took a hike up Fowler Rd in Plainfield. Being a sideroad, this road was much more comfortable to walk on than the main north-south roads in Plainfield. Folks just drive too fast on the main roads! Still, the views from Fowler looking west towards the snow-covered green mountains were spectacular. For trees today, I found trembling aspen, white pine, tamarack, white cedar, beech, yellow birch, gray birch, paper birch, apple, fir, alder, white spruce, red spruce, sugar maple, hemlock, white ash, American elm, and black cherry. Fleshy fruits were buckthorn, highbush cranberry, and grapes. Galls were goldenrod stem gall, goldenrod crown gall, and willow cone gall. And the tracks for the day were white-tailed deer.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/21/19. East Montpelier Trails, East Montpelier, VT. Mileage: 1.6
Categories: hoarfrost, tracks

This morning I met up with 4 friends for our regular Saturday morning hike in Adamant. We hiked a section of the East Montpelier trails from Center Rd west. The temperature was about 0F when we headed out so we were quite bundled up. We were delighted to find many plants covered in hoarfrost. I collected some common barberry, red spruce, and milkweed with frost. I also looked for tracks today, and came up with white-tailed deer, squirrels, a small rodent, and some unknown mammals. Plus we found a large wooden sign that had been severely gnawed by a porcupine. Despite the cold, we found a single arthropod on the snow, a Tetragnatha spider that seemed quite frozen.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/23/19. Medford, MA. 2.5 miles today
Categories: wild

This afternoon I looked up several potential places for walks near my sister's house in Medford. But in the end, I decided I just didn't want to brave the traffic, so simply headed east from North Street on food. I was quite taken aback by how difficult it was to find anything wild at all in this urban residential neighborhood. So different from back home on my dirt roads! For plants, I managed to find pearlwort, cudweed, black swallowwort, dandelion, English plantain, bull thistle, mullein, bittersweet nightshade, a Hieracium of some sort, some goldenrod, mugwort, Lepidium, staghorn sumac, evening primrose, pin oak, burdock, crabapple, Oriental bittersweet. Many of these were just over the fence along the commuter rail tracks. I also found Argenteum bryum, Atrichum, and Orthotrichum mosses, a gray gray squirrel, some house sparrows, a blue jay, a northern mockingbird, and at least 50 European starlings in one tree. Plus some black rot and lichens and a forsythia stem gall. Tracks for the day were rabbit and gray squirrel.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/24/19. Medford, MA. 3.2 miles today
Categories: wild
This afternoon I headed northwest from my sister’s house towards a large cemetery without many iNaturalist observations. When I got to the cemetery, I understood why—not much to see, at least, not many wild things. Still, along the way, I found bittersweet nightshade, ground ivy, black swallowwort, an eastern hemlock planted in someone’s yard, a dandelion in bloom, Oriental bittersweet, some sort of elm (not American), a pin oak, a Norway maple, Oxalis, mullein, greater celandine, and bull thistle. Plus Bryum argenteum, Orthotrichum, Hedwigia ciliate, and Polytrichum commune mosses. Live animals today were a gray squirrel, some house sparrows, a mourning dove, and a red-bellied woodpecker. Dead were a gray squirrel and a mouse, neither of which appeared to be road kill.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/25/19. Medford, MA. 1 mile today
Categories: birds
My husband and I took a quick stroll around the block this afternoon after presents and before dinner. After we had already left the house, I discovered I had a very short lens on my camera, so I wasn’t able to shoot the mysterious bird sitting on a log in the Mystic River (a great blue heron?). I managed to shoot some geese in the park, though. And some mallards on the river.

Publicado por erikamitchell 6 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/28/19. Stranahan Forest, Marshfield, VT. 2 miles today
Categories: fungi, arthropods, tracks

This morning I met up with 2 friends for a hike through the Stranahan Forest in Marshfield. The section that we walked today wound through some hardwoods, including an active maple sugaring area where we had to duck under the tubing. No sap was running, but once they string the tubing, there it stays, year in, year out. One of my friends likes hunting for fungi, so we watched for that. I had my eye out for arthropods, however. We found some Dacrymyces, yellow fairy cups, a tiny fungus between the folds of the bark of an ailing elm, and a small fungus on the bark of a smooth maple trunk. We had quite a bit of luck looking for arthropods. There were lots of snow fleas, and some rove beetle larvae, plus an adult rove beetle and an odd squirmy larva (fly?). There were 3-4 Trichocera (winter crane flies) flying around an old enamel pot sitting on an old stove beside the trail. Tracks for today were squirrel and deer.

Publicado por erikamitchell 5 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/30/19. Anse Noir, Martinque. 1 mile today

Categories: birds, arthropods, underwater

This morning I took a quick hike over to Anse Dufour. I originally intended to continue on up the hill on the road, but discovered that I had forgotten the view finder to the camera I was carrying, so was not able to get good photos of birds. With birds out of the question, I wandered through downtown Anse Dufour taking mostly tourist landscape photos. Still, I managed to capture a Carib grackle, and a magnificent frigatebird. I also caught a fly and a white peacock butterfly. After breakfast, I got my other camera out with the bird lens and did some proper hunting around the campground. I found a purple-throated carib and a blue-throated carib. I also shot a honeybee, a yellow butterfly, some tetrio sphynx caterpillars, a green fly, and a darner dragonfly

In the afternoon, I went for a snorkel on the north side of the bay with my husband. We found a sand diver, a peacock flounder, smooth trunkfish, spotted scorpionfish, West Indian sea eggs, bearded fireworms, spiny urchins, rock-boring urchins, banded butterflyfish, gray snappers, French angelfish, social feather duster worms, spiny lobster, flamingo tongue snail, and a strange mass on the end of a sea fan (worms?).

In the evening, a little mothing inside our bungalow turned up several micromoths and a tree hopper.

Publicado por erikamitchell 5 meses antes (Sinalizar)
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12/31/19. Anse Noir, Martinique. 3 miles today
Categories: fungi, birds, arthropods, under water
This morning I took a hike up the ravine behind the campground. I was quite excited about this hike since I desperately wanted to explore up this way last year but couldn’t because walking seemed to make me more ill. It is terrific to be able to walk again! Still, I wasn’t able to make it to the top of the trail in the hour that I had for walking. This trail goes up quite a ways. It follows a seasonal riverbed, so it is moister than the surrounding area. The trees along the riverbed are bigger and the vegetation is a few shades lusher than the usual forest vegetation in this area. Unfortunately, I still don’t have any references for tropical plants. And I’ve walked much of this trail before, so I watched for fungi more than plants this morning. I found plenty of polypores. I also managed to catch a black-whiskered vireo and a bullfinch. It took me quite a while to figure out possible settings for my camera. The sun wasn’t quite up in the sky, and the foliage made the general light levels quite low. I finally ended up bumping my ISO to 10000 so that I could handhold my long lens. With that, I managed to catch an ant and 2 new-to-me crabs, a large brown crab with orange legs on the edge of a seasonal pond in the mostly dry river bed, and a different dark brown crab with long legs on a rock in the stream.
After breakfast, I went hunting through the campground for birds and bugs. The campground probably has 3-4 acres just above the tide line on the beach. It consists of 4 bungalows, a tree house, and a cement building with 3 studio apartments underneath the owner’s residence. Surrounded by plantings of various fruit trees, including tamarind and hog plum. And some bananas. Today I found a purple-throated carib, a bullfinch, a bananaquit, a brown pelican (in the water), Carib grackles, Zenaida doves, a green-headed hummingbird, a tropical mockingbird, and a black-faced grassquit. I also found a honeybee, a tetrio sphinx catgerpillar, a fly, a yellow butterfly, an orange butterfly, an argiope spider, and a small sandwasp. I had great fun watching an anolis lizard defending a rose apple that it was eating. It successfully sent a smaller anolis packing, and argued valiantly with a much bigger bananaquit, but eventually yield to the bananaquit.
Later in the morning my husband and I took the camp kayak out to the bat cave and then went snorkeling in the nearby bay. We found spiny urchins, an orange anemone, West Indian sea eggs, dusky squirrelfish, trumpetfish, flamingo-tongue snails, rock-boring urchins, soft corals, parrot fish, gray snappers, anemones, orange-spotted filefish, ocean surgeonfish, a dark sea cucumber with yellow spots, a red-lipped blenny, another type of blenny, that same mass on a sea fan, yellow goatfish, and a big patch of sun anemone.

Publicado por erikamitchell 5 meses antes (Sinalizar)

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