Monday, June 3, 2013

Pondside Pleasures

After a week of far-flung botanical adventures, it was sweet to wander my home territory today, just a casual walk around Moreau's Mud Pond, under a bright blue sky, the air fresh and cool in the shade of the woods, sunny and warm where the path moved close to the shore.

No rare plants today, just the dear familiar flowers that always greet me here every year.  And as for beauty, what rare orchid could rival the Wild Blue Iris?

I was happy to see the Frostweed in flower, and I found them early enough in the day to catch these short-lived blooms before they dropped their bright yellow petals.

A pair of Pearl Crescent butterflies found the beautiful day was right for love.

After wandering the sunlit shore, I took to the forested path that circles the pond, enjoying the deep green of the shady woods and the glimpses of blue sky and water beyond the trees.

The wooded banks at Mud Pond are thick with Maple-leaved Viburnum, and today the bright white clusters of tiny flowers were fully open.

As I made my way down to the mud flats on one side of the pond,  a pair of Canada Geese urged their family of goslings to mosey along toward the water.

The very air was alive with the zooming flights of hundreds of dragonflies.   A few even sat for their portraits.  The most numerous species today was the Chalk-fronted Corporal, easy to identify by the two white stripes on its thorax, similar to those of a corporal's insignia.

I don't know the species of this gray-eyed one, but it's possibly a Spring Darner.

The Widow Skimmer, with its fat white abdomen, could be confused with the Common Whitetail,  except for the broad black bands at the base of its wings, rather than across the middle. The bands of white edging the dark bands are also diagnostic for this species.

The Twelve-spotted Skimmer lives up to its name by displaying three black spots on each of its four wings.

Returning to my car along the forested trail, I noticed that at every sunny spot on the otherwise shady trail, many dragonflies had gathered to bask in the warmth of the sun.


suep said...

I was at the Big Lake yesterday, very briefly, and noticed dozens of dragonflies basking in the sand by the Fishing-Bridge ... it's an explosion of Corporals this year !

Ellen Rathbone said...

Definitely a dragonfly day for you!