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Posts Tagged "yard"

Baltimore Oriole

Posted by on Oct 14, 2017

Baltimore Oriole

They may be gone from our yards for the winter but I thought that as we near Halloween it was very appropriate to post this male Baltimore Oriole (Icterus galbula). I enjoyed watching it feeding in an oak tree this past spring on a cool, cloudy and windy day. Do you ever have any luck getting them to come down to eye level at your feeders? I certainly do not, and this bird hopping down to the lower branches of the tree for a minute was a real treat. I hear them every day all summer long but rarely get the chance to see a glow like this one up close. RTPI’s work around the world helps...

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October Orbweavers

Posted by on Oct 2, 2017

October Orbweavers

It’s ‘Meet Your Neighbours Monday’! With the arrival of autumn, you are likely to notice a distinctive suite of spiders around your home. The species shown here is the Marbled Orb Weaver (Araneus marmoreus). The appearance of spiders like this one during the month of October has earned their group the nickname “Halloween spider”. Orb Weavers come in several different colors and patterns, so you might say that they wear a variety of costumes! Marbled orbweaver (Araneus marmoreus) photographed by Twan Leenders....

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Field Sparrow

Posted by on Sep 14, 2017

Field Sparrow

Chautauqua County certainly has an abundance of old farm fields, but we should be hearing more Field Sparrows (Spizella pusilla), and other grassland birds, singing in the fields and other open areas across our region. The prairie habitat that once covered our landscape is long gone, but old, overgrown fields and hay fields provide a decent substitute for grassland birds. Even though their substitute habitat provides most of what these animals need, management practices can be challenges for them. Timing the mowing of these fields is important to protect nesting birds, and cutting in early...

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Monarch chrysalis

Posted by on Sep 11, 2017

Monarch chrysalis

To whom does this stunning, sea-green chrysalis belong? Why, to the lovely “Danaus plexippus” of course! Before the monarch caterpillar inside initiated it’s metamorphic transformation, it would have fattened up on milkweed leaves in preparation for the process. Once it emerges, the adult butterfly has a long journey to Mexico ahead. Quite a remarkable life cycle; It’s no wonder that a young Roger Tory Peterson was fascinated with our local Lepidopterans!

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Eastern Milk Snake

Posted by on Aug 28, 2017

Eastern Milk Snake

Here we have an Eastern Milk Snake (Lampropeltis triangulum). These snakes are harmless, beneficial constrictors that help control rodent populations in your backyard. In spite of their considerable size (reaching almost 3 ft) and beautiful coloration, they are rarely seen. When cornered, a milk snake may hiss, vibrate its tail tip (imitating a rattlesnake), and even strike at you. However, its bite is harmless. Give them some space and any snake will slither away – likely never to be seen again. The common name ‘Milk Snake’ comes from an old, mistaken belief that the snakes drink milk from...

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