2022 · Days of The Week · In Our Forest · On Our Property · Wildlife Wednesday

Eastern Chipmunk (Tamias striatus)

Eastern chipmunks are found in forests, but also in suburban gardens and city parks, as long as there are rocks, stumps, or fallen logs to provide perching sites and cover for burrow entrances They dig complex burrows with many entrances and chambers as well as short escape tunnels, and each chipmunk defends a small area around its burrow, threatening, chasing, and even fighting with a neighbor who invades the space The chipmunks spend the winter underground, but venture to the surface occasionally on mild, sunny days They enter torpor for a few days at a time, and then arouse to feed on stored nuts and seeds Life expectancy in the wild is slightly more than a year.

http://fieldguides.eol.org/

2022 · Connecticut · Hiking In Connecticut · My Travel Journal · USA

Fayerweather Island Lighthouse, Bridgeport, Connecticut 2022

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This afternoon we went to Fayerweather Island in Bridgeport to see another lighthouse. Once at the park, we had to climb across the barrier stones between Long Island Sound and Black Rock Harbor to get to the island. This was quite a puzzle. But I also watched other people on which stones they stepped to make the walk easier on the way back. It was a beautiful, sunny day. And a lot of anglers were out to catch fish. One guy caught a bluefish that was over a foot and a half long.

Arriving at the Fayerweather Island Lighthouse, Kevin, Sara, and I took a short break and looked up its history. We found out, that this lighthouse is not the original building. The original wooden lighthouse was built in 1808 and was destroyed in the Norfolk and Long Island Hurricane on September 3, 1821. In 1823 it was replaced with an octagonal stone tower, which we visited today. Same as the original lighthouse, this building is 40 feet (12.1 meters) tall.

As mentioned before, the walk back was much easier and faster since we knew on which stones to step. Sara was so far ahead, I told Kevin to catch up with her and pick me up in the car. Meanwhile, I sat on a bench and watched the gull on Seaside Beach.

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2022 · Beautiful Colors of Autumn · In Our Forest · On Our Property

Our Yard & Forest In Late October 2022 (1)

🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁

Autumn

When the trees their summer splendor
Change to raiment red and gold,
When the summer moon turns mellow
And the nights are getting cold;
When the squirrels hide their acorns,
And woodchucks disappear;
Then we know it is Autumn.
Loveliest season of the year.

~ Charlotte L. Riser ~

🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁🍃🍂🍁

2022 · Days of The Week · In Our Forest · On Our Property · Wildlife Wednesday

White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus)

White-tailed Deer have long, slender legs, prominent ears, and large liquid brown eyes set off against thick white eye rings. Whitetails have a shiny black nose contrasting with a whitish nose band. The chin is white and edged on either side with a wide band of dark hair. The throat area is also white or grayish.

The deer’s prominent ears are edged in a dark color contrasting with white hair on the inside. The ears are often in motion; they can swivel independently of each other to capture sound from multiple directions and pinpoint the sound’s exact location.

The deer’s underparts, including its belly and the inner portions of its upper legs, are white. The rump and underside of the tail are also white. When alarmed, the deer flashes its tail, and the white hairs on its rump flare out, giving rise to the name “white-tail.”

https://wildadirondacks.org/adirondack-mammals-white-tailed-deer-odocoileus-virginianus.html

2022 · Days of The Week · Wildlife Wednesday

Pickerel Frog (Lithobates palustris)

The Pickerel Frog is common in Connecticut. Its skin is light brown with distinct, blocky, darker brown spots. Pickerel frogs are never green. Their bellies are white and the skin under their legs is orangey-yellow. This is believed to be a warning of their unpalatability. Pickerel frogs can be 2 to 3 1/2 inches long. Northern Leopard Frogs and Pickerel Frogs are sometimes confused. A pickerel frog is never green. It has orange-yellow skin under its legs. Its spots are squarish. A leopard frog can be green or brown. The skin under its legs is white. Its spots are rounded.

Resource: http://wildlifeofct.com/pickerel%20frog.html

2022 · Connecticut · Hiking In Connecticut · My Travel Journal · USA

A Morning Hike At White Memorial Conservation Center, Litchfield County, Connecticut

Kevin, Sara, and I made use of this beautiful morning. It was only 59℉ (15℃) when we drove for a hike to the White Memorial Conservation Center in Litchfield. At the center, we parked the car by the Sawmill Field and walked along the Bantam River. In the swamps, we’ve heard a lot of frogs croaking, but couldn’t find one. They were camouflaged in the water. Close to the Mattatuck Trail, Kevin pointed out a snake. I was lucky enough to photograph the Garter Snake from head to tail before it disappeared under a rock. There were also plenty of wildflowers like chicory, purple loosestrife, swamp weed, and water lilies. A lot of people were also hiking and biking on those trails or kayaking down the Bantam River towards Bantam Lake. When we walked back to our car, we noticed it wasn’t even 9 am, yet.

2022 · In Our Forest · In Our Garden · On Our Property

Beauty, The White-tailed Deer

Usually, when I go into the bathroom I always peek out the window in the morning. This is the time, when wildlife is very active on our property. I looked around the backyard. And sure enough, I saw the rearend of a White-tailed Deer. I put my shoes on, grabbed my camera and tried to be as quiet as possible walking out the patio door. When I looked at the spot, the deer was gone. Then I turned right and saw her standing in the fern eating tree and shrub leaves. I’ve couldn’t got a better surrounding as a picture frame with her. The doe kept eating breakfast for another couple of minutes, before she had enough and jumped back towards the forest. But first, she turned around to say “goodbye” for the day. Isn’t she beautiful?

2022 · In Our Garden · On Our Property

Bubba, The Wood Frog

Wood Frog in our yard

This evening, I walked in my yard and something jumped on my pant leg. First, I thought, a toad must have mixed me up with a tree again. But by closer inspection I saw a Wood Frog in the grass. He sat there very quietly for me to capture a photo of him. But when I tried to catch him, he leaped right under the Hosta leaves and was out of sight. His name is Bubba, and he is a good tenant catching mosquitoes.

2022 · Days of The Week · Saturday - Caturday

Joshua & Karmo

Joshua met a new friend named Karmo today. Karmo is an Eastern American Toad. While Karmo leaped in the yard, Joshua kept an eye on that toad. Sara was concerned that Joshua might take Karmo in the mouth. Before it could happen, she just picked up the toad and sat it on Joshua’s back. Karmo leaped up to Joshua’s head, so he could see better. And Joshua was very gentle with Karmo. The cat let the toad sit there for quite some time. Later, we sat Karmo in the greenhouse, where he could catch some bugs.

2022 · In Our Garden · On Our Property

A Rainy Day In Connecticut (4)

It began to rain in the early morning. And the rain lasted until the late morning hours. While I captured photos of droplets, a Northern Cardinal fledgling got confused and almost landed on me. Once it figured out, I wasn’t mommy or daddy it made a sharp turn and sat on the porch railing.

Today, it was a cool day. However, this weekend we are supposed to get temperatures in the mid-90s (35℃). It will feel just like Texas, before the weather cools down to the 70s on Monday.

2022

OUCH! That Hurts! 🐿

Eastern Chipmunk on our front door steps

Kevin and I did some yard work this afternoon, when he saw Joshua dragging something in his mouth. Since Joshua was right behind me, I grabbed the cat and told him to drop it. A young chipmunk lay there and didn’t move. Kevin took Joshua, while I checked out the little chipmunk. It was on its back in my hands, so I immediately turned it on its belly to check the back and sides. Other than some cat saliva it seemed to be okay. Within a few seconds the chipmunk began to wiggle and bite my finger. The more I tried to pull that darn rodent away, the more it dug in with its teeth. So, the best decision was to let it go. It unlatched and ran under the riding lawnmower. Now, it was Kevin’s turn to find the chipmunk, while I took Joshua inside the house. Enough rodent hunting for that cat in one day! Kevin could get the chipmunk to run from under the lawnmower to and climb up the nearest oak tree. From there, he looked and yelled at both of us. “I guess, that’s the thanks I get for saving him from our cat.”

Thank goodness, the little chipmunk is not rabid. And I have my tetanus shot up-to-date. Today, my finger looks like nothing ever happened. But that bite from that little $#@% hurt.

2022 · My Travel Journal · Rhode Island · USA

Travel Journal: Newport, Rhode Island (Part II)

April 15, 2022

Kevin, Sara and I had a late lunch at the Brick Oven Pizzeria on Thames Street, before we made our way to Goat Island. We saw the famous Bannister’s and Bowen’s Wharves. A lot of people enjoyed sitting outside, eating, drinking and being social. The glass walls protected them from the wind. And the sun was warm. My face got sunburned a little bit. Sara got herself one of those Amethyst crystals, I talked about in Part I. As we kept walking, we’ve got a good look at the Oliver Hazard Perry sailboat in Newport Harbor. Almost halfway up on the bridge to Goat Island, I could capture some photos, I usually see on the frontpage of Newport tourist magazines: The Goat Island Lighthouse and the Claiborne Pell/Newport Bridge in the background. We didn’t make it all across the Goat End Connector, the bridge that connects Goat Island with Aquidneck Island. It was too darn windy. However, Kevin, Sara and I had a good time in Newport. We’ve got to see some places. Now, we know the size of Newport and Aquidneck Island. Next time, we can plan the trip better and know what to expect.

~ THE END ~

2022 · My Travel Journal · Rhode Island · USA

Travel Journal: Newport, Rhode Island (Part I)

April 15, 2022

Sara talked for months about going to Rhode Island. Since the girls have Spring Break, I started making plans for the last couple of weeks. Yesterday, Kevin, Sara and I drove to Newport and looked around a little bit. Mainly, we stayed in Thames Street, King Park, King Park Beach, Bowen’s Wharf, Washington Street, and Goat Island. The wind was gusty and cold at Newport Harbor. So, we made it short.

The photos above are from King Park and King Park Beach. Originally, we wanted to see Fort Adams. But we parked the car in Thames Street. And it was a long way to walk to the State Park. So, we took a nice stroll along King Park Beach to get to Rochambeau Statue and Monument. Kevin, Sara and I had a nice view of Newport across Newport Harbor. Newport has tons of wharves. Right now, it is still too early for sailing. But I can imagine the harbor will be full with boats in Summer. Newport also has a lot of history. It would take days to visit all these places and take all the information in. I believe this will be more interesting for Sara, when she’s older and hangs out with her friends. However, she got herself a nice small piece of Amethyst crystal in one of the tourist stores. She loves to collect crystal stones.

… to be continued …