It’s Their Eyes

We continue to see Great Egrets, Great Blue Herons, and other birds in the parks near our home. However, this post celebrates the wildflowers, butterflies, and other insects seen recently.

.

When presented with two equally good photos, one of a bird and the other of a insect I usually find myself more attracted to the bird. It’s not to hard figure out why, a bird’s eye more closely resembles our own, they are vocal much like ourselves, and often seem to have better parenting skills than we do. The world of insects is not as easy to understand, and when it is, it can be annoying, destructive and sometimes even painful. When I was young, undoubtedly because I was much closer to the ground and spent a considerable amount of time outside, I had a greater curiosity about “bugs”.  Now, years later, retired with more leisure time, my interest has been rekindled as I take a closer look at the plants and flowers that, to a large extent, comprise the insect’s world.

.

The flowers of early summer seem to do most of their celebrating in meadows and along roadsides. Some like Bee Balm and Jewelweed venture into the woods if sun light is available and Lazard’s Tail is never far from the water.

Bee Balm, O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve.

Rattlesnake Master, a rather rare plant in Ohio. O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve.

Chicory, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

Saint John’s Wort, (Donna), O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve.

Swamp Milkweed, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Common Mullein, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Jewelweed, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Poke Weed is not an uncommon sight this time of year, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Gray-headed Cone Flower, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Easily overlooked Hairy Wood-mint, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Shadows from an adjacent plant decorate a Wild Potato Vine blossom, Griggs Reservoir Park,

Donna checks out some Lazard’s Tail, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Lazard’s Tail, (Donna).

.

With coneflowers and milkweed in full bloom, insects seem to be everywhere. Many leaves, pristine and virgin a month ago, now soldier on with portions missing giving further evidence of the insect’s industry. Spiders and assassin bugs wait in ambush.

Donna takes aim on an unsuspecting butterfly, O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve.

Common Wood-Nymph, O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve.

Blue-fronted Dancer, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Busy backyard Bumble bees.

A Female Eastern Pondhawk keeps an Eyed Brown Butterfly company, O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve, (Donna).

Paddling is a great way to see all kinds of wildlife, including dragonflies. Getting a picture of one is another matter. O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve, Eversole Run.

That is, unless one lands on your finger, Eastern Amberwing.

Ebony Jewelwing, Kiwanis Riverway Park.

Little Wood Satyr, O’Shaughnessy Nature Preserve, (Donna).

Clymene Moth, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

It’s easy to be thankful you’re not a small flying insect when you stare down a Female Widow Skimmer, Kiwanis Riverway Park.

An Assassin bug nymph lurks in the leaf cover, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Red Admiral, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Take 2.

Green bee on Chicory, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

Northern Pearly-eye, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

Emerald Jumper, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

Take 2.

Great Spangled Fritillary, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Bumble Bee on milkweed blossom. It’s amazing how many insects make a living off this plant, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Meadow Fritillary, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

The very small but beautiful Summer Azure, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Black Swallowtail in our backyard.

.

After the many years since my youth, when they were an almost integral part of each summer day, I’m again starting to “warm up” to the bugs. We don’t always understand each other and need to work on our communication skills, but I think there’s hope. However, one area that continues to be a challenge is their eyes. I’m okay until I take a picture and blow it up. That’s when I find my brain being stretched a bit, partly in awe, if I was a lot smaller it would be fear, but in any case all of the sudden these guys seem very different almost alien bringing back thoughts of 1950’s Sci-fi movies. Fortunately that’s when I catch myself, realizing that most of them bare me no ill intent.

Cicada, Cedar Bog, (Donna).

Sunglasses anyone?

.

Thanks for stopping by.

.

XXX

.

Should you wish prints from various posts may be purchased at Purchase a Photo. If you don’t find it on the link drop us a line.

 

Enchanted Cedar Bog

It had been a while since our last visit to Cedar Bog. Only forty four miles from our home in Columbus it’s easy to reach on some of Ohio’s lovely back roads. Blessed with perfect weather we loaded cameras into our small roadster for a delightful day of open air motoring and nature. Cedar Bog Nature Preserve  contains plants and animals not typically found in most Ohio natural areas. One of the first things you’ll find out upon arrival is that it’s not really a bog, it’s a Fen.  At the end of our exploration we agreed that the highlight had been the Showy Lady’s Slippers but we had found the whole area enchanting and well worth another visit.

You are always on a boardwalk when exploring Cedar Bog.

A wet environment means fungi.

We were probably at the tail end of the Wild Columbine.

Showy Lady’s Slipper

Another view.

Woods as well as water.

Cicada, 17 year Locust, (Donna).

American Toad.

Common Yellowthroat.

Wait, I lost my balance!

Okay.

Red Admirals were out in force, (Donna)

Another view.

We saw several Broad-Headed Skinks along the boardwalk. They grow from six to 12 inches long and are the largest of Ohio’s lizards. The young have a bright blue tail. Large males become a uniform olive-brown with red coloration on the head. They are essentially a woodland inhabitant found only in several counties in the southern half of Ohio and are rare even there. (Ref Ohio Division of Wildlife)

Another view, (Donna).

.

We would highly recommend a visit to Cedar Bog. This time of year the Showy Lady’s Slippers are in bloom and greatly contribute to the magic of the place. Cedar Bog is near Urbana and when we’re in the area one of our favorite places to refuel is Grimes Field Airport Café. It’s unique and worth checking out if for no other reason than a piece of one their great pies. Thanks for stopping by.

.

XXX

.

Should you wish prints from various posts may be purchased at Purchase a Photo. If you don’t find it on the link drop us a line.

As Summer Goes On . . .

Photos often result from our time spent in nature but they are seldom the only reason we’re out there. Truth is, we just love being outdoors. Part of the fun is looking closely to see what each new day brings. Perhaps it’s a flower, butterfly, bird, or something else that appears unexpectedly.

.

Below is a pictorial ramble through things seen in the last few weeks in central Ohio that amazed or enchanted.

.

The summer flowers have really been coming through for us this year.

R P1040852c

Swamp Rose Mallow, O’Shaughnessy Reservoir

R Halberd-leaved Rose-Mallow IMG_5823

Halberd-leaved Rose-Mallow along water’s edge, Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5800

Monkey Face along Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5795

Trumpet Flower along Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5791-2

Checking out the Lizard’s tail, Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5788

A closer look.

.

While things are starting to dry out from an unusual amount of early summer rain, it continues to be a good year for fungi.

IMG_1219

Taking a close look at mushrooms in a neighbors lawn reveals unexpected beauty.

IMG_5734

White Jelly fungus, Griggs Park

IMG_5684

Chicken Mushroom, Griggs Park

.

It’s harder to find warblers now but other birds are filling in.

B IMG_1209 (2)

While kayak fishing on O’Shaughnessy Reservoir this immature Black-crowned Night Heron was spotted along the shore. A real treat!

 

B IMG_5774

Adult Black-crowned Night Heron, Griggs Reservoir.

Solitary IMG_9056

Solitary Sandpiper on mudflats, Paint Creek Reservoir

Phoebe 2 LR 2 with bug 2 closer 1 080415 paint creek   cp1

Eastern Phoebe with a snack, Paint Creek, (Donna)

IMG_9044

Killdeer on mud flats, Paint Creek

IMG_8977

Green Heron, O’Shaughnessy Reservoir

IMG_9003

Great Egret, O’Shaughnessy Reservoir

IMG_9004-2

Taking flight, O’Shaughnessy Reservoir

IMG_8744

Baby mallard, Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5693

Double Crested Cormorants in the middle of Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5687-2

Portrait of a Great Blue Heron, Griggs Reservoir.

.

At first we thought it might be a beaver.

IMG_9015

Muskrat, O’Shaughnessy Reservoir.

.

Insects continue to satisfy our curiosity.

IMG_9081

Black Swallowtail, Paint Creek

Puddling 5 better 2 080415 Paint Creek cp1

Eastern Tiger Swallowtails puddling, Paint Creek, (Donna)

IMG_9096

A closer look, Paint Creek

Blue-fronted Dancer 2 head on 1 good 1 080415 Paint Creek   cp1

Blue-fronted Dancer, Paint Creek, (Donna)

American Rubyspot 3 on stick 2 closer better 1 080415   Paint Creek cp1

American Rubyspot, Paint Creek, (Donna)

Stream Bluet and American Rubyspot 1 best 1 080415 Paint   Creek cp1

Stream Bluet and American Rubyspot , Paint Creek, (Donna)

PPowdered Dancer 4 LR 3 closer 1 080415 Paint Creek   cp1

Powdered Dancer, Paint Creek, (Donna)

IMG_1180

Ebony Jewelwing, Griggs Reservoir.

IMG_5804

Female Ebony Jewelwing, Griggs Reservoir

IMG_5806

Stream Bluets mating, Griggs Reservoir

IMG_1225

Cicada, front yard.

.

.   .   .   and it’s always nice to see turtles and snakes some of which were in unexpected locations due to recent high water.

IMG_8995-2

Painted Turtle, O’Shaughnessy Reservoir.

IMG_5724

Snapping Turtle, Scioto River just below Griggs Dam.

IMG_5720

Garter Snake, Scioto River just below Griggs Dam.

IMG_5715

Common Water Snake, Scioto River just below Griggs Dam.

.

Sometimes it’s just the place.

IMG_1170-2

Cove, Griggs Reservoir

P1040896

Paint Creek riffles, heading further upstream would have meant more dragging than paddling.

P1040879

Cliffs along Paint Creek.

P1040887

Lunch stop, Paint Creek

P1040869

It was very quiet as we paddled along the cliffs, Paint Creek Reservoir.

P1040859crop use

Looking north on Paint Creek Reservoir as cormorants enjoy their sunny perch.

P1040846-3

O’Shaughnessy Reservoir looking much more isolated than it actually is.

.

Thanks for stopping by.

The Eye of a Thieving Magpie

My view of this wonderful and crazy life - as I travel and explore.

Diary of an Aesthete

A Journey Of Heart And Mind

quercuscommunity

Life after the Care Farm

Out For 30

Exploring the world, 30 days at a time.

Tootlepedal's Blog

A look at life in the borders

Photos by Donna

Birds and Wildlife Photography

Israel's Good Name

Voyages and Experiences in Israel

Israel's Good Name

Voyages and Experiences in Israel

Eloquent Images by Gary Hart

Insight, information, and inspiration for the inquisitive nature photographer

gordoneaglesham

The Wildlife in Nature

Through Open Lens

Home of Lukas Kondraciuk Photography

Imagery of Light

Photography by Sheila Creighton

My Best Short Nature Poems

Ellen Grace Olinger

through the luminary lens

The sun is the great luminary of all life - Frank Lloyd Wright

talainsphotographyblog

Nature photography

Views From A Small Island

A photographic record of the everyday and the not so everyday life around the UK.

Mike Powell

My journey through photography