Tuesday, September 30, 2008

He's Back

Since the aftermath of Hurricane Ike I didn't see the Praying Mantis. I hoped he hadn't been injured or captured by a snake but he just wasn't around. Today while walking the dog I discovered him back near the Sage plant. Once you find him it's fairly easy to get some shots.
I'm even able to get some macro work done and only disturb him somewhat.
He didn't like me too close so he headed for cover. It wasn't long until he blended into the surroundings.
I also saw a white spot on the green plant and it turned out to be a caterpillar of the Hickory Tussock Moth.
They a a neat white with black decorations.
Luckily I didn't handle him for I found out later it has a toxic poison in those outer hairs.
One final critter on my Sedum from a few weeks back a moth was working along with the bees.
It was fairly co-operative for these shots.
The camera was doing really well for the macro work.

Monday, September 29, 2008

The Injuries Of Youth.

I always enjoy the stories of growing up that I find on Tipper's site 'Blind Pig And An Acorn'. She just did a story of her fun in the woods of her youth. It reminded me of accidents I had in the woods of the Appalachian Mountains. Pennsylvania has hard wood forest rather the the pine forest of the South. We used to play from sun-up to sun-down and also had games we played in the dark when we were kids. You can not play hard without getting into some accidental situations. I had two good friends that were involved in those accidents so I'll share what happened with you.

My friends were Ray and Davey, Ray lived across the street and was one year older and Dave lived next door and was four years older. Ray out weighed me by 50 pounds and I was quick. We would wrestle and as long as he wasn't able to get his weight on me I could take him. If he got that 50 pound advantage I was in trouble. Davey was just to big to play those games, he was taller and weigh more then either of us. Davey later on got me into fast cars but that's a story for another day.

The first accident involved both Ray and Davey. We were at a frozen pond ice skating, they made fireworks in the area. This pond was way back into the woods and not near any houses. It was a dammed stream that flowed down to our swimming hole on the river. Just to give you some background we all wore a lined red leather hunting caps when we were younger. The hat had flaps you could pull down over your ears and was very warm. We were having fun skating and Ray decide we should build a fire. There was a log that just wouldn't break by normal methods, to put on the fire, so Ray decided to break it against a tree. I could not see anything good coming from this act so I hid behind Davey. I told you he was tall, at least a foot taller then me, so I'd be safe (yea sure). The one thing I hadn't figured is the log would break and fly at an angle that caused it to fly over Davey's head and land on front side of my head. That hat was strong but a log was a little too much. The log managed to split open my head through the hat . We were pretty far from any houses so we headed for the closest house we could reach. By the time we got there by hat was red on the inside and out. My Dad was called and we headed to the doctors office. The doctor put a clamp on that big split. It would have taken 8 stitches to close the cut today but one clamp did the job. I still have the bump from the scar that the clamp made. The hat was so soaked with blood and it had to be replaced.

The second accident involved Ray and I. We both had hatchet and used to carry them and enjoyed cutting down trees. Ray's Dad was a machinist and we had used his grinder to sharpen the hatchets. Ray being a little older decided that we should cut this one tree down like lumberjacks with each of us taking a swing. It sounded like a lot of fun to a youthful brain. A hatchet is a lot shorter then a woodsman's axe. Maybe I should have remembered about the ice skating incident but I didn't. Everything went pretty well until my hatchet stuck in the tree. Ray's hatchet managed to cut through the end of my thumb. It wasn't that bad. Another trip to the doctors for a couple of stitches and a tetanus shot and I was ready to go. I never tried that chopping method again.

The third accident happened with Davey. We lived near a main highway and we used to ride our bikes on the road. Roads were not that busy back then. Even though we lived in the city our road wasn't paved so when we could ride on the State Route we would. There was this one day that Davey challenged me to a race, not being one to back down off from a race we went racing down the highway. No cars coming I decide to make a pass. I had those pedals on my Schwinn pumping away and as I started to pass I hit some loose dirt on the pavement. Down I went and I hit my head on his rear axle. Another trip to the doctors and another clamp on the head. Needless to say I now have a scar on the back of the head from from that collision.

We did have a lot of fun and did cause our own dangers back then. It wasn't like today where the grand kids can get carpal tunnel syndrome injuries from using their Wii.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Today's Flowers #8

My friend Luiz Santilli Jr. has started a Today's Flowers Meme, check it out. Come and join with your flower photos. You can get in on the start. Sunday at 7GMT is the post time.

My Today's Flowers entry will be my roses. I have three plants that are Pink Roses. One is established and two are new this year. The established plant has yellow in the base of the rose.
It blooms nicely with a yellow glow.
As it matures the pink takes over.
The ending the flower starts to deteriorate and it's time to dead head the flower.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Camera Critters #25

Camera Critters by Misty Dawn, go here to see who's participating.

Those of you who saw last week's CC Post I now give you 'The rest of the story'. When my friend called me about the deer he said five deer had gone into the woods. As the first pair moved through out come another pair. This fawn is a little older and it's spots are fading. If you click you can see the remainder of the spots. They ended up catching the first two. this is a happy family.
this mother was younger then the first and may have been the offspring of the first mother.
The three joined together to feed a while.
They made a move to under a tree that was changing to it's autumn colors. This makes a neat photo.
They moved and posed and I snapped photos.
The mother and fawn were a loving pair.
The mother moved into the woods and my story comes to an end.
I do hope you enjoyed the trip.

Friday, September 26, 2008

What Is This and Misc.

What is this thing, I have them flying around the yard. They look like a monster mosquito. They have a funny eyes and mouth.
They move fast but hide when they land.
I took Soccer Boy out to see the Painted Lady, this is his photo of two.
I did the close-up work on one of them.
I had a Black winged butterfly with red spots, but it didn't let me get a shot. These are just fun shots.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Sky Watch Friday 9.26.08

Sky Watch Friday is on it's own. Please check out the new sight and link in if you wish to participate. There were 384 people last week with beautiful Sky photos. You can link in from my side bar or above.

I made a trip to Pennsylvania for a golf outing and stopped on the way to capture this rolled hay field.
It was a little later at the course and I saw this Sky.
The weather cleared during the day. How can you pass up a nice reflective pond on the course.
The afternoon sun was also very nice and those wispy clouds were still there.
This is the view from the highest point on the course with a view. I waited until my brothers cart was in view as we left the course.
Be sure to visit a lot of great Skies at SWF.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Damselflies at a Small Pond

Damselflies are an interesting creature. I know I have at least three kinds and this is a Common Blue Damselfly. I thought this was interesting when I also got the water skeeter below it.
Here is a view of a similar one.
This is splendour in the grass. You may have to click to get a better view. These were hard to see when they landed.
Two mating pair with one flying and the other perched.
I moved in closer to the perched ones. You can see the reflection on the water,
This is the same pond I saw the Snow Goose on the last post.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Autumn Is In the Air

The Canadian Geese are gathering together for their migration to the South for the Winter. The young ones are big as the parents and ready to fly. There were two groups at the two ponds. This is the big pond. This is the group on the smaller second pond.
There is something strange on the pond. What is that white duck doing with the geese.
Take a look at this gooses neck, it has been tagged, if it is captured they will determine where it has gone.
What a minute, that's not a duck. That is a Snow Goose (White Morph phase) among all the Canadian Geese. I couldn't tale that it was a Snow Goose without the black wing feathers and the goose type beak. It was a surprise capture for me.
So this is another sign of Fall.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Autumnal Equinox

The Autumnal Equinox occurred at 3:44 PM on GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) today September 22Th. The Autumnal Equinox occurs when the Sun crosses the line of the Equator, which splits the Northern and Southern hemispheres of the earth. That means for my time zone EST (Eastern Standard Time in the USA), which is -5 hours from GMT, it would have been 11:44 AM. We are now using EDT (Easter Daylight Time where we set the clocks ahead to get more daylight) so the Vernal Equinox actually occurred at 12:44 PM. It is the first day of Fall in the Northern Hemisphere. This word equinox comes from the Latin meaning Equal + Nights. This means the length of the day and the night are 12 hours long. This will slowly decrease as the days progress so we will have less daylight in the Northern hemisphere until the first day of Winter in December. Conversely the Southern Hemisphere will have more daylight until their first day of Summer. I made a post in December, The Change of Seasons, telling you the reason the tilt of the Earth causes the seasons to change. You can read my explanation of the happenings. I hope this helps with the understanding of the changing seasons. Does this mean we will have no more hot days in NE Ohio. Absolutely not, the seasons change slowly as the Sun makes its way South. We sometimes have a real hot September days but it doesn't last long. It will continue to get colder each week as the days go by. Fall has come, can snow be far behind, (tell me I didn't just say that)?

In honor of the first day of Fall I'm showing the beginning of the leaf change. Can you see the color appearing?
It's almost as if you can see the change happening slowly before your eyes.
It goes from green to yellows, orange and reds.
My wife is starting to decorate for the Halloween season in Fall, who doesn't know who this is?
The porch is ablaze with Mums, pumpkins and scarecrows.
We are ready for the cooling of the weather in our future.