Monday, October 31, 2011

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Red Maple

I grew up in a house surrounded by red maples. The acidic clay soils of NE Ohio are perfect for this species. I rarely see red maples in a natural setting in Central Ohio, but this morning we walked through a large grove of them at Highbanks Metropark. Perhaps the shale bedrock is thick enough to produce acidic soils that support red maple.

Posted from my iPhone

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Twisted Sporophyte

The stalk of this moss sporophyte was twisted- all the other stalks on this clump were sticking straight up.

Which leads me to ask......

Do you dare to be different?


***Update:  Apparently, I liked the name "twisted gametophyte"  too much, because I screwed up my plant anatomy.  Shame on me.  The twisted part is the sporophyte!  Duh.....


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Last Quarter Crescent Moon

I took a few macro photos of moss today, but when I loaded up my memory card into light room, I saw this image.  When did I take that?  How quickly my memory fades.  This was the scene very early yesterday morning, before sunrise.  A perfect crescent moon- I would have completely forgotten this memory had I not photographed it.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Turkey Tail Fungus

Today the whole family visited my grandmother's house in Akron Ohio.  I wouldn't think of her house on the hill in the Kenmore neighborhood to be a place where I would find a nature photograph worthy of posting here, but I did.  When I was growing up, my grandparents had three massive norway maples in the front yard.  One still stands, one was replaced with a red maple, and the stump of another still remains.  The turkey tail fungus adorning this stump was just too intricate not to photograph.


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Time to Build an Arc?

It's pretty hard to believe that the sun was shining earlier this week.... it's been raining for two days straight!


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Giant Foxtail

Grasses are hard to identify, right?  Well- here's one that everyone should learn to recognize.  You've surely seen it before.  There aren't many grasses that have these seed heads that look like a fox's tail.  The most common ones in Ohio are in the genus Setaria.  This particular species, which can grow to four feet or so, is Setaria faberi, the giant foxtail.  At the Delaware Wildlife Area, there's a fallow field which was dense with this species- as if it was planted.

Learn this grass, impress your friends with your nerdy botanical knowledge. Giant goxtail- Setaria faberi.


p.s.- This is a non-native species, but its not considered particularly invasive.

PPS.  This is published post number 1000 at The Ohio Nature Blog, which I've been pecking away at since 2006.  I've been working on a retrospective that was to be post number 1000, but in my tiredness I forgot that the milestone was creeping up.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Big Bluestem, Canada Goldenrod

Where has the week gone?  After a day of rain, yesterday's semi-sunny day seems a distant memory.  I'm on dad duty the next four days while Megan heads to California.  Wish me luck!


Friday, October 07, 2011

It's Harvest Time

Before dawn this morning, the combines were rolling across the fields of Delaware County.  The soybean harvest has begun- soon this field will nothing but stubble.

I love Google Plus.  This evening, between period breaks of the Bluejackets game, I posted several versions of this same scene.  This one came out as the most interesting.  If you haven't joined Google+, I highly recommend it.  It's an amazing place to see what photographers and nature lovers are discovering and creating.


Thursday, October 06, 2011

The Bald Eagle Soars

Bald Eagle soars over Delaware County, October 6, 2011.

So I'm driving home from work this evening.  I take the back roads, mostly county and township routes through corn, soybeans, and woods.  I look up, down, and around, because I never know what I'm going to find.  As I was driving the Subaru tonight though, I looked up at a group of swirling turkey vultures.  The lowest one baffled me for a second, because it had a white head.  BALD EAGLE! I slam on the breaks, back up the car, park on a farm lane, and get whip out the telephoto lens.   It's still gliding above me, and I fire off a salvo of images before it slowly drifts out of camera range.

Everyone loves the American bald eagle.  In fact, my posts on the eagles of Highbanks Metropark are the most visited pages on my entire blog (which is quickly approaching 1000 published posts).

Eagles can be seen across Ohio.  And although I see them often, I rarely get such a treat on my drive home.


(After closer inspection of this photo, this bird may have a red band on its left leg- what do you think?  I'll check some of my other photos to see if I can confirm the presence of a band)

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

RIP Steve Jobs

Our first family computer, my first computer, was an Apple IIe.  We gave it up for a windows machine around 1994.

I came back to the apple world 2009, when I received the magical Ipod touch- and I haven't looked back.

Megan bought me an iphone last Christmas, which is perhaps the most amazing camera I've ever owned. 

The Ipad was next...when I'm at home, it's rarely more than five feet from me.

Steve Jobs, thank you for just being you. And thank you for sharing your vision with the world.


Monday, October 03, 2011

Autumn Leaves

Thank you to River Mud, Scott, and Beyond my Garden for chiming in on yesterday's barrier island post.  Today, it's just pretty pictures. Happy fall.


Sunday, October 02, 2011

Across the Midway Inlet to Litchfield Beach

I find it fairly amazing how many of the Atlantic barrier islands are lined with homes.  Yes, it's a fantastic place to spend a week, year, or a lifetime, but these places are dynamic. Sand moves.  I can't complain though- We did rent a barrier island home for a week.  Yes, the cottage was probably 80-100 years old and had survived many hurricanes over the years, but that's just a wink in the history of our world.

Our weekend was busy and kid-filled!  My DSLR didn't even come out of the bag- but I'll have more images of Ohio's progression towards the peak of fall this week.