Sunday, April 15, 2012

Under the Old Apple Tree

We woke up last Friday morning to 6" of new snow. I feared a huge delay in the season for wildflower and bug photography.  However, this Sunday morning it's nearly all melted at the Quincy elevation.  I visited the old apple tree on Lee Road and found that the plants and animals that live there were hardly disturbed.  I picked up a few little logs, boards and small stones and found a busy cluster of ground beetles underneath.  They scuttled around rapidly like Carabids and played dead when disturbed. (Top three photos)  I always replace the rocks and boards so these creatures won't have to find or make new homes.  There were still several nests of Earwigs tending their eggs (4th photo) and some pleasant greenery.  A cute crop of Bedstraw was emerging at the base of the tree, and the Henbit Dead Nettle that has been blooming here for several weeks seemed none the worse for the wear.  I expect several new species to emerge here in the coming week.   Warm temperatures are forecast and the soil is wet.  Great combination for a "real" spring to begin.

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