Posts Tagged ‘sunlight’

Returning Bluebirds

The bluebirds moved into my yard recently.

They wouldn’t show up if it weren’t for their bright colors. They can be easy to see if they’re perched just right in the sunlight. They do brighten up a person’s day.

This picture was taken the same day as the ones of the bluebird. I can’t explain why the picture turned out like it did. The white lines in the foreground are strands of spider silk. The other finer strands are part of a spider web. What I don’t understand are the tiny round spots?

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Early in the Morning

My morning started with birds visiting our yard. The sun cleared the hill behind our house, and the birds became more active. I started taking pictures as the sun cleared the strip pit behind our house. I took pictures of the sunlight brightening the emerging leaves in the hackberry tree, the pine and the sweetgum trees.

The sunlight lit the few strands of spider silk and changed their colors to mostly orange.

I like the depth of the layered image of branches and new flowers emerging among them.

 

Damselfly Thermometer

Buffy and I went out for a loop walk of the backyard before the heat got too uncomfortable.

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Well, we were too late, as this blue dasher dragonfly’s position indicates.

This is called the obelisk position. It reduces the amount of direct sunlight on the dragonfly’s body.

Glide in For a Landing … and More

Today started out sounding like spring with a robin loudly singing in our front yard, and a great horned owl hooting to the north.

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The kitchen sink isn’t exactly my favorite place to be, but I often see interesting things while there. The window faces west.

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 Strands of silk drifted in on a light breeze and landed close to the porch. The silk measured approximately 3 1/4 inches long.

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I first suspected an adult spider had spun it because of the size of the silk … only adult spiders wouldn’t do this.  Spiderlings produce silk but don’t build a web.

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 Maybe it was the spiderling of a larger species of spider. Today turned out to be a sunny day with the temperature reaching 67. An eastern phoebe repeated its name in the backyard this afternoon.

So…. our days finally look and feel much more like spring is here in southern Illinois!

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The spiders had a surprise waiting for me in the evening.

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 The sun was getting lower, and I noticed spider silk reflecting the sunlight. I hurried out in the front yard with my camera.

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A light breeze added movement to the single strands of silk.

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The camera seemed to have a mind of its own as to how the pictures turned out.

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 I just snapped and snapped pictures with the light quickly changing.

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Then I noticed the dramatic effect on the other side of the highway. I stood on our hill and zoomed in for closer pictures of across the road. The speed of the sun lowering in the sky didn’t give me much time to do anything but quickly snap pictures. The reflected light shimmered with a light breeze.

Everywhere I looked, and as far as I could see, there were strands of spider silk.

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The breezes moved the spiderlings’ strands in the trees, grass and other dried vegetation.

I took thirty-eight pictures in eleven minutes before the sun sank to the horizon.

Then, when I remembered to check the next day, every bit of the spiders’ silk was gone.

I can’t imagine what the sky looked like with so many ballooning spiderlings! I sure wish I’d seen it!

A Fungus and a Lichen

Before I get started on this blog, I want to say that I’m a highly visual person. I find photography quite frustrating! For some reason I just don’t understand or retain most of the information.

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I was working in the yard this morning and took this picture of the mushroom and lichen with my Canon PowerShot. The sun hadn’t come around yet to hit the subjects.

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I took this picture on January 9th and didn’t get around to starting the blog until this morning (14th). Obviously, this picture was taken in the sunlight. The colors in this and the above picture differ so much. I don’t use the automatic setting, because the pictures come out too light.

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So, I took another picture after the hazy sunlight moved over to this side of the branch. All three of these pictures were cropped.

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This shows the pores on the underneath side of the mushroom.

 I’ve had no luck identifying these mushrooms.

The lichen is a blister lichen (Physcia stellaris).

Crab Spider

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Crab spiders come in different sizes, with females being the largest.

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The angle of the sunlight made this one easy to spot.

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Shadows later made it much less conspicuous.

An Afternoon Hike

It wasn’t hard for my new 4-year-old grandson to convince me to take him on his first hike.

IMG_1029 crop redWe headed for a local lake where Buffy and I hike often. We followed the lake trail when we got there.

IMG_1028 crop redI couldn’t resist the urge to see if any orbs were joining us.

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Photographing daytime orbs requires sun and a shadowed area/tree to position the orbs in front of. Thin cloud cover makes photographing them easier too.

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I always hold my left hand up to block the sunlight from my eyes and use the camera’s display to locate the sun and orbs.

Jaxson, Buffy and I had a lot of fun. Looks like maybe the orbs did too.