CALM AFTER THE STORM...............Yes, we did have a powerful Nor'easter that was more a hurricane than anything else...winds reaching 60 mph and rain very heavy at times. I tried to get down to Small Point for pictures, but there was water across the road plus the rain and wind would have made photography impossible. The tides were extremely high, flooding access to the campground. I wondered if the water would rise above the Head Beach dunes, but it did not. For a time, as Roger said, Hermit Island was an island! He has been busy as a bee trying to clear the roads from falling trees. Power was out for most of the week at the campground. I have to say, however, that the beach sand seemed to build up rather than wash away. Many camp sites are under water as seen in this picture of Iris Downs. We have had a reprieve, and temperatures have actually risen to the 70 degree mark! So drying is taking place, and who knows? Campers may be doing their thing in the days to come..
There have been definite signs of spring up here. I continue to hear the Wood Frogs, and am sure the Peepers will follow. I saw a Mourning Cloak butterfly yesterday, flitting about in the sun. These are hardy souls - spending the winter as adult butterflies. Therefore, they are ready to fly out from the nooks and crannies where they have been concealed to reveal their flying routines and seek food. Again, I have to use a drawing since the insect wouldn't pose for a picture!
Here is another sign of spring, now visible. Looking very like a Dandelion, this flower emerges early to replicate the sun. If you look closely, there are distinguishing characteristics that make this a Coltsfoot. There are only scales, no leaves on the stem, in this stage of development. Later, the seeds will form (much like a Dandelion blow-ball only smaller), and large leaves will spread in the shape of a colt's foot.....thus giving it its name. These often grow on roadside places where conditions are not ideal..but there they are, making a spring statement.
The storm seems to have cleared the air for the progression of spring. Ospreys are feeding in Center Pond. Gulls are seen standing in pairs, with mating and nesting on their minds. The Goldfinch males are now sporting their characteristic yellow and black plumage. Robins are all over the place, pulling at the worms in our field. I continue to cut up and haul away all the damage from the wind. The White Pine branches - some 6 inches in diameter - have to be dealt with. Yesterday at the transfer station, everyone came loaded with branches from the trees torn down by the storm, while the Wood Frogs croaked in a wet area near the entrance. It was also town cleanup day, and everyone was out picking up trash along the roads. I wonder how many noticed the blooming Coltsfoot or flying Mourning Cloaks?
4/22/07 Ronnie, calmed down.