Friday, September 21, 2018

First and Last

Last of the Coneflowers

First Moonflower. Thank you Linda!

First Heavenly Blue, first thing this morning

Last Ruby-throated Hummingbird? Ours have been gone for a while,
so this one and her partner are probably passing migrants
I put the feeder back out, just in case the cannas run out of nectar
Of the season.

They were tremendously hungry and mostly ignored me

Oh, Honey

Tis the season of roadside stands and we have been taking full advantage. Winter squash from one Amish farm, apples from our favorite orchard, and tomatoes and homey from a new place we discovered in our travels.

I love honey but I won't buy it if it isn't local. Foreign honey is often of dubious quality and we have a number of excellent bee keepers in the area.

We stopped the other day at a stand on a rural road near here and bought some nice tomatoes and a little jar of honey.

It is wings down the best honey I have ever tasted. Like Mozart for your mouth, sweet, light, fragrant, and flavored just like you might think flowers would taste if you ate flowers. Better than orange blossom honey and that is saying something.

We went back for a second jar for me and one for my folks and may even go back for more before the season ends. Good stuff!

My new bench

Crew Cut

Corn is being harvested at a breathtaking rate around here. Corn crews are flying over the fields; the big corn trucks rumble down the roads at a scary pace, and the landscape looks different every time we drive by.

We went over to look at the stuff at the fall machinery auction yesterday and grabbed the video below of one of the big farmers actually chopping. Don't miss the bunnies late in the clip....they were in a big hurry to get out of Dodge.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Mud Flats

They were not kidding about lowering the river.
What fun to walk here
Lots of stranded mud bugs

Which we rescued if we could
Mud Birds..Greater Yellowlegs

In the Cloud

Woke up to the scent of water today, as if  driving up to Peck's Lake and crossing the magical boundary between town and mountain. As soon as you enter the trees you can smell the water there.

This grumpy old cloud named Florence isn't really raining so much as she is bleeding warm water, drip, drip, drop, drop....

So many drips, so many drops. Sheets down the driveway. Puddles everywhere.

So much water.

They lowered the upper dams on the river locks yesterday, from Scotia to Fort Plain. Mad props to them, as this will hopefully mitigate the threat of flooding. We have seen enough of that in the past few years. It makes for good birding with all those shorelines bared for foraging. I am hoping to get down to see how she looks, but there are a lot of busy people with other agendas in line ahead of me.

This will sure slow down the corn harvest for a few days though. Over the past week it has been astonishing to see how fast the fields have been stripped. Drive by a cornfield on the way to a reservoir we visit and see a full field of stalks and ears. An hour later nothing but stubble and the big choppers have moved on to another field and then another. 

The landscape is changing fast in a hurricane of corn.

Kinda like a barber shop at a Marine base at the beginning of basic training.

And who can blame them. It is much nicer and more efficient to chop on hard dry ground than it is to wallow in mud. All this water will make plenty of that.

Speaking of water.....

Monday, September 17, 2018

To the Far Blue Mountains, and the Wild Mountain Lakes

The Best

My mother is the best of all possible mothers, a bright and shining light in my sometimes more than slightly dim life and someone whom I have aspired to grow up to be for many of my years.

Today is her birthday.

I hope you will join me in wishing her an especially happy one with lots of love from all corners.

Love you, mama,

Happy Birthday

Sunday, September 16, 2018

A Jay by any other Name...or where's the Birdthday Cake?

Am I not cute?

We went up to the Sabbatis Bog today looking for boreal birds. Although we found a few relatively common ones we didn't see anything exciting until I walked back to the car. What used to be Grey Jays, but are now Canada Jays were all but landing on the boss's head looking for food. They were very friendly.

Truly, kind sir, I need cake......
or sunflower seeds if you have them

Guess maybe they thought he was carrying birdthday cake or something. It sure felt like a birdthday to me! These birds are such a delight even though it takes over a hundred miles of driving to get where they are. Such a treat. I was sorry we didn't have pockets full of sunflower seeds for them.

Then we visited the Adirondack Mountains Antiques Show so the boss could get some fun out of his special day too. Never saw so many furs, pack baskets, canoe paddles, and Adirondack camp stuff in my life! That was pretty neat too.

Palm Warbler, nearly as tame as the jays

Happy Birthday, Big Guy

Hope you have a wonderful day and many more of the same.


I don't think she sees me....I mean, I blend right in with the grasses and stones, right
Nope, she is missing me completely
Boop-de-boop-de-boop-de-boop, I"ll just sneak right by her and she'll never know


Oops, I think she saw me......

Friday, September 14, 2018


Bird(s) of the week.
 Newly fledged Eastern Wood Pewees, right along the creek between the house and the barn

Yeah, we went parking last night....It's true. There was another car down there at the boat launch and I suspect that they were really parking.

A soggy Merlin we found the other day

We were just listening for owls. It was a beautiful evening, with a sweet little golden crescent moon, the star that dogs it dangling nearby, any number of glowing planets, and just before the darkness set in, a clear sky as orange as...well, as an orange. Wish you could have seen Big Nose and Little Nose silhouetted against all that from the top of the hill above 5S.

Green Heron

Very nice. Full dark down at the river, but with a fine array of stars showing and lights from the locks and the local houses reflecting on its calm, still surface.

Great Blue Heron

No owls, but three Killdeers screaming in the dark up on an Amish farm we passed. That was kinda cool.

A soggy Red-tailed Hawk (immature)

What? Did you think at our age we were getting up to anything but chasing elusive birds out there in the dark? didn't happen

Song Sparrow