Archive for February, 2018

Miniscule Comes to Mind

  I walk loops around our backyard for the exercise, and so I can watch for any photographic opportunity.

IMG_7674 crop

Lichens are common on both live and dead wood.

The Whitewash lichen (Phlyctis argena) above is similar to Common Button lichen (Buellia stillingiana), which has more black dots. The spores are produced in the dots, called the apothecia.

IMG_7984 crop

I rotated this and the next picture, because it makes it easier to see the lichens.

Candleflame lichen (Candelaria concolor) is the yellowgreen one on the bark of a hackberry tree. Research online shows that its color can vary.

IMG_7984 crop too

My Lichens of the North Woods book gives 0.1-0.5 mm for the width of the its lobes!

Advertisements

Colors of Winter

Ice and freezing rain can have surprising results …

and more surprising results.

There’s intricate designs,

a frozen icicle in a stick cage

and lots of sparkles.

 

Surprising Colors

      Today started out cloudy, cold and windy. The word “dull” came to mind.

                                                                                                                      We’d had an ice storm during the night.

                                    I  went out after breakfast to walk around the  yard. All the ice reflected the gray sky. I took a few pictures to remind me of the ice storm. I just realized I’d overlooked one picture that I’d taken:  It has such an artistic design with a combination of the colors in the background and the linear shapes in the foreground.

The colors set the mood for the day … unless the weather changes.

————-

This picture shows linear movement of the ice-colored twigs on a near-by tree.

This picture was taken about the same time as the one above. Both were taken in our backyard.

It shows the results of camera movement and the early morning light.

A Visiting Cooper’s Hawk

A Cooper’s hawk decided to perch in the sweet gum tree in our front yard.

Its brown pattern blended in with its surroundings.

Then it decided to perch on a sign across the highway, beside our neighbor’s barn. It was a cloudy day with a light snow falling.

The Cooper hawk’s tail has a squared-off end, where a  sharp-shinned hawk’s has a rounded tail.

The light snow was enough that I couldn’t get good clear pictures. This picture better shows the squared end of the Cooper hawk’s tail.

 The day remained cloudy with an occasional mist. The hawk came and went a few times.

So, I might have more time to hawk watch.

Spider Silk … in February

It’s warmed up now at the end of January, and I’m seeing increasing number of strands of spider silk. I see the most connecting the tall grasses in the field across the highway.

A breeze blows the strand of silk and

the reflected sunlight “slides” back and forth along any longer strands.

The spiders let out a length of silk. It grows longer and longer until it attaches to an object, like the wood above.

The silk really shows up in the evening light. Spiders can let out much longer strands than the one above.

These two were probably from the same spider. The light slides back and forth along the silk, and the sun reflects the light in different colors.