Tag Archive | New York

A Wetland Violet

A Wetland Violet

Walking through the red maple/black gum freshwater wetlands along the Connetquot River in New York, I see small blue-violet plants on moss hummocks, on the exposed root balls from blown over trees and along the edges of creeks and small streams. As I bend down to get a closer look, I see hairless heart-shaped leaves […]

The Most Beautiful Violet in the World

The Most Beautiful Violet in the World

In the last few blogs. I focused on several species in the violet family. One of the showiest violets is the birdfoot violet. So called due to its leaves resembling a bird’s foot, it grows in drier areas than the other species I featured and at Connetquot River State Park Preserve in New York, I […]

Beautiful Blue Jays

Beautiful Blue Jays

One of my fondest memories as a 10-year-old child was seeing these brightly colored birds in the wild when my family moved to a rural area from a suburban post World War II development where rows of cape cod houses and strip malls took the place of potato farmland. I was accustomed to seeing the […]

Red-Winged Blackbirds are Home Again

Red-Winged Blackbirds are Home Again

When I lived in New York, I always looked forward to the return of the red-winged blackbird as it was a sign that spring was coming. The males returned first, set up breeding places, defended these territories from rival males and awaited the return of the females. I often saw them at the tops of […]

Hunting for the Elusive Pyxie

Hunting for the Elusive Pyxie

In the spring of 1976, I drove two miles on dirt roads to a remote area of Connetquot River State Park Preserve in New York where I was a biologist. The purpose of my trip was to rediscover a rare plant called Pyxie Moss (Pyxadanthera barbulata). Despite its name and looks, the plant is not […]

The Venomous Caterpillar

The Venomous Caterpillar

During a recent trip to Prospect Mountain in the foothills of the Adirondacks in New York, my grandchildren found black and white fuzzy caterpillars climbing on the rocks near the top of the mountain. I cautioned them not to touch these hickory tussock moth caterpillars because its hairs can attach to your skin and inject […]

A Duck That Nests in Trees

A Duck That Nests in Trees

In pine barren wetlands, on New York’s Long Island, where black gum and red maple trees dominate the landscape, a mother wood duck calls to her ducklings from the edge of a small pond. The ducklings are only a day old and covered in down. They are still in the nesting cavity of an old […]