Friday, October 14, 2005

Field day

I got to work in the field today. It was a good day to not be behind a desk. It was cloudy, but the rain held off and gradually it got sunny around noon. We had to walk a proposed sewer line and we saw quite a few cool things.

Viper's Bugloss (Echium vulgare)

Showy Aster (Aster spectabilis), Goldenrod (Solidago sp.), and some Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron radicans), which is actually very pretty this time of year. Did you know that Poison Ivy is a valuable wildlife plant and helps sustain songbirds through the winter?

Two box turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) having sex. I apologize for the crappy quality of the picture. The digital cameras my company has for field work aren't the best. But if you look in the center of the photo, you'll see a very orange male box turtle on top of a yellowish female turtle, who at the moment, is withdrawn in her shell. I don't think she appreciated having her photo taken at such a moment. But I couldn't resist. I've only ever seen this once before, so it's pretty rare. Usually you don't see them mating in the fall, but a female box turtle can store sperm from one mating for up to four years. So she can make eggs whenever the conditions suit her. Pretty cool.

Star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata). This isn't my picture, but one I pulled of the web. The picture I took was way too blurry. I didn't realize how big these things were. No wonder people complain when they get moles in their laws. You could seriously twist an ankle walking over this guys tunnels. These moles are semi-aquatic too. Neat. And check out those diggin' paws.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

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9:17 AM  

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