Thursday, May 29, 2008
No rare turtles were found. I spotted one large snapping turtle which I named Snappy. No pic of Snappy though. We did spot a luna moth while taking a break in the morning, which was cool. At our third stop which was the most boring of the bunch, a co-worker found this nest of three presumed baby song sparrows. Not so cute yet.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
The wine festival was great. It was held at a former estate which is now owned by the County. I've been lucky enough to be inside that old mansion on the hill. I didn't know there were going to be so many wineries but we lucked out and the first one we hit was great and cheap. We had to be smart about our selections since it would be impossible to do full tastings at like 20 wineries. It was a cloudless awesome afternoon and I bought 6 bottles of wine.
Monday was spent doing household chores and getting my car's oil changed by my dad and brother. I decided to bring Cashew along to crawl around in the grass for the first time. At first, she was brave and craning her neck in amazement. Then she got freaked out and hid in her shell for at least 20 minutes. I got tired of waiting for a good camera opportunity so I put her back in the tupperware. She came out of her shell again and I let my mom and brother watch her in the grass. She walked around a little bit more (each time my mom squealed which probably didn't help the cause) and had a staredown with an ant. Then it was back to her tank for now. I'm running out of food so this weekend will be her release date. The weather is finally being consistently nice and warm and I found a good spot for her to go. It's going to be bittersweet but it's for the best.
Monday, May 26, 2008
I ran into two garter snakes as well. Then off to the other side of the road which also has potential rare turtle habitat. It quickly went from find any turtle search to find some irises to clip, bring home and put in a vase. Then I headed to woodchip trail in the woods to make it back to my car. Literally 20 feet from car, I saw a spotted turtle on the trail. Spotted turtles are one of my favorite kinds. Since I had all my equipment to measure and weigh the rare turtles, I worked this little chap up. Upon his release, he tried to dig himself into some wet leaves in the adjacent wetland. I had found a spotted turtle crossing this road years ago. I had helped it across the road. I was delighted to find one again and it's my first this season. I am pretty sure it's not the same one since the first one wasn't so smooth.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
"Mom" as I called it came over to check me out. Babies didn't follow.
Since I didn't have food, she quickly turned around. But note all the cute various colored babies who were newly shorn.
The beginning of the day yielded this mossy well in the woods. I can't remember what sort of fairy tale troll is associated with wells, but this certainly would be a good candidate. But alas no troll was inside the well.
Here's another bear scratch mark....but no other signs of them out in the expansive woods.
The only thing I can afford is the fixer upper. That's more like my price range. It comes complete with live in wildlife. I harvested some lily of valley in its backyard. They are now potted and on my deck. I clipped some past prime lilac and changed my mind once I realized that they were infested with bugs. Of course I didn't find this out until they were already in my car. So I have lilac blossoms and mysterious fruit fly sized bugs to keep the ticks company in my car.
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
The most insanely competive guy at the office found four super rare turtles, and three other types of turtles. Here's his adolescent box turtle he found. This girl cracked me up with her half eaten grub on her snout and the rest of the grub between her neck and her skin.
The cutest find on Sunday was made by the only turtle competitive coworker..aka birdman. It was the first fawn that I saw this season. It was underneath a skunk cabbage and was being shielded from the rain by a cabbage leaf.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
I could seriously have a post for each room since each photo has a story to tell. Here's the French garden. For some reason, it reminds me of the stuff at Neverland. You know those low lying flowers in various shapes.
This is the English garden. There was a secret visitor to the Knot Garden, which was shrubs shaped into a knot...think Celtic knots. Can you spot the squatter?
Here's the Chinese garden complete with koi and a bull frog squatter.
They had a giant sequioa (at least that's what I think it was...either that or a redwood) bonzai. Poor thing!
Here's the Indo-Persian garden complete with citrus and papaya trees. Watch out for the water hazard in the middle of the sidewalk.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Above is the house on the site that I'd like to live on. It's right on the giant beaver pond. It's almost like a vacation house it's so remote.
Here's a fun sea of skunk cabbage. It's out in all its glory. This is what most of the day looked like.
Cool root action. It'd make a great little home for some critter.
Here's another awesome stone house on the site. I'm really glad the dogs were in the pic. Too bad the mastif had to be tied up...but he cracked me up with his lazy, slow and low woofs. It's like he can't be bothered to freak out like the other dogs do, but he still wants to participate.
Here's a box turtle I found at the second site we have to do down the road from the beaver pond site. We drove the perimeter and I'm delighted to say there is an alpaca farm on it. You know that hours will be wasted and many pictures will be taken while I play with the alpacas.
In good news, I went outside to fully investigate the loss of the suet feeders. I didn't want to go yesterday since they just sprayed for bugs. I discovered one suet feeder lying on the ground in the thicket of bushes. The suet was completely gone but I suspect that the real culprit here is racoons. I don't know why the condo people would remove the suet, but throw the feeder on the ground in a dense thicket. The other feeder was nowhere to be found. I was suprised because it's difficult to remove the feeder since I loop the hook back around into the wire mesh. I guess racoons are craftier than I expected. So one feeder is back in action and to be safe I made sure it was even more hidden.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
That was the thought that crossed my mind today while I visited a defunct chicken farm. My boss had been "attacked" by a "chicken," which I presume was actually a rooster and it really wasn't an attack. The rooster chased him around his vehicle and actually went around the other side of the car to cut him off at one point. He had to hold off the bird using his soil auger. I was hoping to avoid this encounter when I saw the rooster who then proceeded to come towards me repeatedly. Then I began to realize that he thinks I'm going to feed him.
Aside from the rooster, there was a bunch of feral cats around. They enjoyed watching me at a safe distance. There's actually two cats hanging out by the garage door that's open a crack. The feral cats and rooster apparently like to hang out. I tried to get as close as possible to the motley bunch but the cats are in mid scamper in this picture.
It goes without saying that there's an "Egg Room." I'm betting the Spelling mansion doesn't have an egg room.
I'm still recovering from my sinus infection. I still sound sick but I can survive without having fistfuls of tissues and cough medicine. I'm waiting for my appetite and energy to come back. It makes it hard to smell the flowers that are out. I found some lily of valley, which I feebly attempted to smell. I love lily of the valley.
Friday, May 9, 2008
Monday, May 5, 2008
Then since I was muddy and up there, I made on last stop. No rare turtles were found, but I found some unhatched old eggs. Sad.