Sunday, September 15, 2013
First of all, let me apologize for my absence and lack of diligence in maintaining this blog to anyone who may have actually followed it or noticed. Work requirements and life in general through the summer have interfered with, well, life in general. I should be moving into a new work routine that may or may not offer a more structured setting and let me get back to the things I love to do in life.
I did manage to get out to one of my favorite haunts today; more just to get out, than for anything else. The cool spell we are having in late summer is a welcome relief and made for a very pleasurable and soul renewing experience.
I know I've said this before, but I still wonder about the purpose of some of God's creatures on this earth. Take the Emerald Ash Borer. A small insect. A beautiful insect. But what it has done to the beautiful ash trees in this part of the country is devastating. The preserve I visited today has, or had many beautiful ash trees, before the Emerald Ash Borer moved into this area. The effect has been unbelievable and irreparable. Many trees are dead or dying. 40 trees have been selected for removal from the preserve because of the possible danger they impose on visitors. Many more, that pose no danger, will be left because of the only positive effect the Borers have. When the ash tree dies, it quickly dries and becomes brittle (hence the danger to visitors from possible falling branches or whole trees). The affect of drying causes the bark to loosen and separate from the tree. This creates cavities that offer roosting places for the endangered Indiana Bat. So the dead trees that are being left will provide a good habitat and support to another of God's creatures.
Still it saddens me to see so many wonderful trees gone in an environment that is so fragile to begin with. I wonder what the loss of these trees will do to this place. I may never know what changes happen here because of this, in my lifetime. But, I will continue to visit and support it, as best I can, for as long as I can.
Sunday, May 12, 2013
Spring is a fascinating time. It's a time of rebirth and growth; not only in the natural world. Bright colors seem to catch everyone's eye in Springtime. The fresh new under growth, the bright wildflower blossoms, or the flowering Dogwoods and Redbuds. Colors don't always show themselves in all the normal places. You have to look for them. They might have to come from within. The colors are ALWAYS there. Just might have to look at the big picture to find them.
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Slowly but surely, the signs of Spring are appearing in the woods. New green leaves are poking through the decaying leaves. Buds on the under brush are beginning to swell. Warblers and flocks of Robins flitter about the woods, proclaiming their right to this area or that tree. And the Vernal Pools are forming. Within these "singles bars" of the woodlands, many of the amphibians of our area are busy gettin busy. The frogs and toads will become more vocal in the days ahead. Salamanders will chase one and other looking for a willing breeding partner. The eggs sacks will start to appear, and the circle of life will continue for some of our seldom seen woodland creatures.
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
The transition between late winter and early spring is a difficult time. As humans, we want it now. We want spring to be here. We crave the warming sun, the spring wildflowers, the change to better times. Nature does not care what we want. She will do things in her own fashion as she has done them for eons. She is waking the woods. The signs are there. But it awakens slowly, as it should, as the time is right. No need to rush these things.
(Side Note - this image was made four days before the vernal equinox. Even though it was almost spring, the woods had a very "fall like" feel to it.)
Thursday, February 28, 2013
Nature has a way of reminding us of how fragile life actually is. The message is always there for those who care to notice. Every time I venture into the woods, I see the cycles of nature. The beginnings and the ends. If there are, truly ends. For it is an endless cycle. Nature recycles everything. When something dies, or a season changes, what remains behind is recycled into something else that causes life to begin again. It is a cycle that has served the planet quite well for eons, until man came along and tried to change the cycle.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Spring is coming! Even as the ice, snow and cold haggles for more time in our lives, spring is coming. Mid-winter can be a depressing time. The days are cold and gray. Time seems to pass slowly. The sun holds too close to the horizon to provide much warmth. But, if you are brave enough to venture forth, from the warm, comfortable and somewhat secure homes that we make for ourselves, we find that nature is ready to awaken. She is ready for SPRING! The sun is actually warming the landscape. Birds are singing. Spirits are rising. And plants are growing and thriving, and pushing their way through the ice that remains where they live. You can't stop progress in the natural world. Come on, Springtime!
Thursday, January 24, 2013
With everything being so cold and gray outside, I've been longing for something green. Since finding that in the outdoors at this moment is unlikely, I started going back through my image archives to see if I could find something to cheer me up and and maybe re-work, that would feel warm and sunny. In the end, I decided to go with a little different feeling in this image, just because. I think the leaves of this tree/bush (I can't remember what it's actually called) lend themselves to black and white. I'm not sure what emotion I'm feeling when I look at this final version, but it's definitely different from what I felt in the original. Here's to a little winter green....uh....gray.
Saturday, January 19, 2013
My first venture back to the woods, of this new year, did not reveal anything surprising. It was a beautiful day with sunshine and temperatures in the mid 40s. Deer were moving about, but kept their distance. One small buck made a mad dash away when he felt I had gotten a little too close. Squirrels scurried about the leaf covered forest floor as they always do. Redtails watched from the tops of trees and glided effortlessly in the wind when they flew. Their raspy call fills me with a sense of being in the wild and that I am not alone. I like the woods in winter, as well as every season, really. The winter woods is open, exposing all of it's secret places that cannot be easily found when it is awake and alive with thick green leaves. I find it interesting being able to see further back into previously unseen areas and knowing now, what is there. As near as I can tell, the woods is resting peacefully and will begin to awaken soon. I'll be ready, whenever it is.