An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Archive for March 23, 2010

Welcome to a photographic journey through the fields, woods, and marshes of New England

Here I’ll be sharing some photographs I’ve recently taken as well as some of my favorites from my forthcoming book Naturally Curious. I’ll be updating my blog periodically with new images, new stories, and more glimpses of New England in all seasons.

COMMON  LOONS  BACK !

Common loons typically return to this area around the first or second week of April, but one was sighted in Lyme, New Hampshire, just across the Connecticut River this week.  The timing of their spring migration is dependent on the speed with which lakes become free of ice, and this year we’re experiencing a very early spring, thus early-arriving loons.  When returning in the spring to their breeding ponds, if and when they encounter ice-covered lakes, they retrace their flight back to open water and congregate there until warmer weather permits them to continue their migration.  Older birds return first to their territorial lakes; most juveniles remain on their wintering grounds until they are at least three years old.


Rusty Tussock Moth Eggs

I was attempting to climb a fairly young sugar maple in order to reach an old nest at the very top, when I slipped and fell.  Little did I know that my failure to reach the nest was going to present me with the opportunity to discover a mass of overwintering insect eggs, right at eye level on the tree trunk when I landed on the ground.

Last fall in a tree cranny a female caterpillar female rusty tussock moth (Orgyia antiqua) wove a cocoon in which she overwintered.  After emerging as a wingless adult in the spring she mated with a male rusty tussock moth that had flown to her, and laid these eggs on her cocoon.