Sunday, 27 March 2011

Niagara-on-the-Lake -- March 27th, 2011

A mannequin in the window that caught my eye in 2007, caught Jane's eye this time. In talking to the shopkeepers, they introduced me to Lola, the name they'd given her.

This was what she looked like in 2007...

And today...

We drove down to the lakeside (man was it cold with the wind off the lake) and the weeds and bushes along the shoreline were encased in ice. This one looks like a Dogwood.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

On the Path... March 13th, 2011

I try to walk "my path" every day. It's an abandoned railway spur line (the rails are gone) just outside our front door. Of course I don't make it every day, but even if I only make it on a fairly regular basis, it's fascinating to see the changes over time. Since I've been walking the same path for a few years now, I know where to look for certain things-- the Coltsfoot flowers & the Mourning Cloak butterflies (coming soon) and many others that follow at their appointed times.

Until the early ones return, I like to get shots of Spring emerging.

In this shot, the seed pods are from a Black Locust tree. I think the green leaves are the invasive Garlic Mustard that will explode in the months ahead.

As the seeds, etc. emerge from the ice and absorb the sun's rays they seem to end up in their own "nests".

These fungus are a little worse for wear from winter's grip. They were a rich, rusty brown in the fall when I first spotted them.

Black Knot fungus-- looks like black "you know what". Seem to be seeing more of it the last few years.

Lichens-- the small "cups" and flower-like "petals" are a miniature world of their own. I took way too many shots of it. Click on the image for an even closer look.


Sunday, 20 March 2011

Ice Patterns

As winter loses its grip, I discover more ice patterns. Puddles and shallow water seem to offer the best variety of patterns. With air bubbles trapped beneath the ice, the patterns vary even more.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Long Point, Ontario (on Lake Erie) -- March 12th, 2011

Some of us from the Pickering Naturalists Club went to Long Point to see what migrating waterfowl would grace us with their presence. Reports as early as the morning of the day we arrived reported 1000s of Tundra Swans in the area. Alas, they left before we arrived at the prime location. They probably got tired of all the birders & photographers staring at them through their scopes & cameras.

Nonetheless we had a good day and did see 100s of Tundras in small flocks and many others looking for scraps in the somewhat frozen cornfields. Also saw Shovellers, Red-Wings, Robins and a few others.

We stopped for lunch-- I don't think anyone had a BELTCH but it sounded pretty good.

This shot of a pair of Red-Wings is very grainy but I like it enough to include it.

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