Friday, 29 August 2014

Autofest Car Show -- 2014

I was down at the lakefront to check out Autofest. I'm not a hard-core car buff but I was there an hour or two.

Red is always a popular colour.

A bit too much red in this case?

There was a tent with some small creatures in aquarium tanks for the kids to enjoy. Mind you, the adults were enjoying them too. Myself included.

A bulbous frog.

This African tortoise was a hit.

It was allowed to wander about under the attendant's eye.

A Caddy from the tail-fin days, with a deadly looking bumper. Were they standard or is this a custom job?

A couple hundred of the cars were under the trees by the lake. It was a nice setting to wander through.

An interesting trailer.

These hard-top convertibles didn't sell well did they? No trunk space.

T-Birds on the other hand, were a big seller.

The owner added a cute touch. It brings back the A&W days of window trays and car-hops.

We used to see these on the road didn't we? Is it an Edsel? 

This is now common at car shows they tell me. They use air bags instead of springs so that the vehicles can be lowered to the ground for shows. Looks a bit odd. Note the license plate.

A work in progress?

                               - fini -

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Lynde Shores CA
August 19th, 2014

Before I went to Lynde Shores, I dropped by Cranberry Marsh. It's next to Lynde Shores. Didn't see a lot, but this family of Mute Swans was there, amongst the lily pads.

And a raft of Mutes was out on Lake Ontario. When I see waterfowl offshore on such a large lake, it emphasizes to me their wildness and freedom

It's less than a 5 minute drive to Lynde Shores. With the explosive growth this year, the cattails along the boardwalk block the view you'd otherwise have of the area.

Three camera-shy Wild Turkey hens. As soon as they saw me they slipped into the woods.

Mom and her kids.

Even the water lilies are bigger this year.

With more of them curled and flopping in the wind.
Lynde Shores is without doubt the best local nature area to take children to so that they can experience a bit of wildlife. There are dozens of chipmunks running around on Chickadee Trail.

Young kids love to feed them of course and at Lynde Shores they'll almost eat out of your hands. Some will I'm sure. I almost stepped on this one.

There's a path called Chickadee Trail. It's short enough that young kids can manage it and they'll encounter chickadees, chipmunks, ducks, wild turkeys, etc. depending on the day and their timing.

Today there were three racoon kits on the trail. The parents were more cautious and not obviously present, though they could easily have been nearby.

Though not welcomed in most neighborhoods, they're cute little bandits... especially when seen in their own element.

It's easy to argue that people shouldn't feed wildlife, but in this case, in this area, I think it's ok. Others will disagree.

But with the media constantly reminding us that kids today spend too much time with electronics, I think it's great to see them enjoying nature... and discovering what is 'out there'.

The look on their faces, and giggles of delight, as they watch and feed the birds & animals is priceless. Let them enjoy.

- fini -

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Oshawa Second Marsh
August 13th, 2014

There was a hint of fall in the air today... cooler and a strong breeze. I love it.

My usual entry point to the marsh is through Ghost Road Bush, so even with repellent on I had to donate some blood to the marsh mosquitoes. I was greeted by thousands of Touch-Me-Not/Jewellweed along the boardwalk.

They're not popping yet.

Leaf Miners intrigue me. They're the larval stage of some moths, flies & beetles that live and eat between the top & bottom surfaces of leaves. They leave  snake-like trails or blotches. These are the first blotch-type that I've come across.

The blotches are obvious but if you enlarge the images you can see a few trails too. They're unsightly but apparently cause minimal or no damage to plants.

My favourite land snail. I love its colors. I often see dozens of them at a time. This guy was alone though.
Shades of pink & purple are everywhere in the marsh... some Purple Loose-strife here.

Loosestrife in the foreground and Joe-Pye Weed behind.

Joe-Pye Weed
And lots of Himalayan Balsam.

I've only seen Wooly Bears the last few years. Not sure what this one is. Turns out it's a Yellow Wooly Bear. Thanks John.

A colorful tangle.
I made it down to the lake today. This bay has thousands of water lilies on it.

Where Farewell Creek leaves the marsh and enters Lake Ontario. It's a pretty spot.

Very little activity on the lake today. These Cormorants were a ways off shore. They have a distinctive profile.

They're streamlined in flight. I love watching a small flock of them flying single file, just above the lake surface. I've only seen them do that when they're a fair ways from shore though.
I saw a couple Monarchs today. They're few and far between this year. This one though, is a Viceroy... thanks Gerry.

I often forget that butterflies have four wings. From many angles, they can easily be mistaken for only two. I think there's an insect of some sort in front of one wing in this shot... that I didn't see at the time.

Silverweed grows just fine in sand. When it does, its red runners are easy to see, looking like highways on a road map. 

Later stage of Bladder Campion?
Update: I guessed wrong. It's Bouncing Bet... a cool name. Thanks John.

Some stretches have very little color.

... so share some blossoms (Goldenrod) when you find them.

Another of my favourites... Black Swallowtail.

With the heavy growth along the creek and channel, getting a clear shot of a heron or cormorant that may be alongside is next to impossible.

This Cormorant is staring right at me. Once you get too close (which isn't very close at all), they fly along the water surface for a 100 yards or so before they lift up, making a flight shot next to impossible too. Herons do the same thing. A smart move to be sure but it doesn't help photographers.

Red Admiral

Burdock almost has its burs ready to catch a ride home with passers-by.

This Turkey Tail fungus picks up the colors of its surroundings.

My first stop when I get home from the marsh is usually the patio with a glass of iced tea... or if it's hot enough, a cold beer. As I was sitting there today I thought I'd add one more shot to the day. 

It was overcast so this hot-pink Phlox beside the patio looked 'hotter-pink' than usual.

The 'ex' (exhibition) opens in Toronto this Friday. When it's over, the kids are back to school and the roads get busier again. 2014 is quickly slipping by. Tempis fugit.

The Friends of Second Marsh web site...
A direct link to a map of the paths/trails in the marsh...

A link to a page that has my past posts re the marsh, in one place rather than scattered throughout this blog...

- fini -

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