Frosted phragmites — they’re Grrrreat!

Sugar-coated shafts

Sugar-coated shafts

Bowing a bit under their icy coverings, these marsh reeds (probably Phragmites australis) withstood their first real winter storm.

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Ashen abstract landscape

Snowy soccer color field

Snowy soccer color field

The heavy snow today turned the view across one of the park playing fields into a muted monochromatic Mark Rothko painting.

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The Enchanted Gummy-bear Broccoli Forest

Salted sand stalks

Salted sand stalks

Looking as if someone had emptied boxes of frozen florets, gel-like green mushrooms sprouted here and there in one of the sandier sections of Weltz Park. The fungi might be some type of Waxcap (genus Hygrocybe).

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The Upright Stuff

Red October

Red October

Last month, several red dragonflies were flying around the Little Silver Nature Trail, sometimes resting on the boardwalk that cuts along and across a creek. This one — perhaps an Autumn meadowhawk (Sympetrum vicinum) — preferred to perch vertically on a tree trunk.

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Buckeye witness

Sitting pretty

Sitting pretty

A flashy little flier, this Common buckeye butterfly (Junonia coenia) took a few minutes to rest atop a meadow leaf and bask in the early afternoon light.

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Guacamolde

Arboreal avocado

Arboreal avocado

Little bits of mold-like moss or lichen grew in just the right way around a fallen log’s knot to suggest a split avocado.

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Little pate of butter

The Return of the Kinglet

The Return of the Kinglet

Crown jewel

Crown jewel

Back in this area for winter, or perhaps just passing through, this Golden-crowned kinglet (Regulus satrapa) hopped & pecked its way through grass and underbrush looking for insects.

Apparently undisturbed by close observers, this small bird was practically underfoot at times.

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