Monday, June 30, 2008

Barnacles and Periwinkles: A Day at the Seashore

A scene when the tide was out at St. Andrews-by-the-Sea.

The barnacle is a crustacean which lives in shallow waters of the ocean. The Canadian Encyclopedia states that they have an odd feeding habit as ,"they stand on their heads and kick food into their mouths". The barnacle cements itself to a hard surface and feeds by waving its six legs through the water to filter food from it. Its body is composed of plates , two of which can open and close when the tide goes out and they are not feeding.
The Periwinkle is a species of small sea snail and we found them in abundance when the tide was out. Many of these are now empty shells but when active they move about on a muscular fleshy foot. When the tide goes out they attach themselves to rocks with a mucus film on the bottom of their foot. In this location we found hundreds and hundreds of these shells with a wonderful variety of designs. Above, an empty, red carapace of a crab found along the shore.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Doorway - One Single Impression

sandy fragile
welcoming sheltering homing
nest site bank swallows
nurturing feeding protecting
temporary seasonal

These lines were created in response to the word, 'doorway', which is this week's prompt at One Single Impression. For more poetry on this theme please visit the hosting site..

The Bank Swallow builds its nest in sandbanks. If you look carefully at the first picture you will be able to see a few dark holes along the base of the sandbank near the bottom. These holes are entrances, or doorways, into the Bank Swallows nests.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Gull Bath

We had gone to the coast earlier this week and while sitting on a bench having a picnic lunch we were enjoying the view looking out over Passamaquoddy Bay at St. Andrews. There was quite a bit of gull activity and we had noticed a group of gulls in a tidal pool quite close so I had
decided to take a closer look.

I noticed one gull in particular and it was taking a bath! This surprised me, as these gulls spend much of their time in water anyway, but it shouldn't have, for all birds like to bathe and groom.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Green Frog

Dreaming by the pool side, sitting in the sun and if you look carefully at this Green Frog you can see the reflection of clouds in the sky in its eye. Perhaps it is a sky watcher too.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


I used the exclamation mark in the title for I wanted to convey the excitement and surprise I felt when I saw this Porcupine ambling along the side of a woodland road. We had gone to the ocean for the day and my head was still full of tides and sand, and images of barnacles, periwinkles and gulls, and the least I had expected to add to my list for the day was a Porcupine, for I seldom see them. So to see one in open view, walking along the roadside was a treat! And the great thing about this sighting was that it continued on its walk even though we continued behind, following it while taking pictures through the windshield.Would you believe that this solitary rodent is reputed to have about 30000 quills and can unleash some of them by lashing its tail when threatened? I kept that fact in mind as I drove ahead of it, further up the road, and then stopped to get more pictures as it continued up the road towards me.The Porcupine is Canada's second largest rodent, next in size to the Beaver. And like Beaver, Porcupines have a strong orange coating on the outside of their teeth and gnaw on things to help control the growth of their teeth as Beaver do.

After taking a few more pictures it seemed like this prickly guy finally realized there was someone up ahead, standing in the road taking pictures of him, and he turned and ambled off into the woods.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Some Nature Gems for Ruby Tuesday

From Nature's jewel box I would like to share with you, on this my first Ruby Tuesday posting, some precious ruby coloured photo gems of beauty which I have found. This beautiful dragonfly above, a Calico Pennant, carries the beauty of both colour and design and adorns bogs and ponds and lakes. However if the heart- shaped designs on its abdominal segments are not your choice you may instead prefer the yellow accents on the broad amber basal band of this Band- winged Meadowhawk seen above to the left.You might like to broach consideration of a Ladybug Beetle which comes in a variety of black polka dotted versions, two of which are shown here. There are many different arrangements and groupings of numbers of dots to be found on these compactly designed Ladybugs.
Then again if Ladybugs are not your design choice then there are other options such as beetles with black oval shapes edged with yellowish white on a red background, or perhaps the irregular black shapes on red of this identified beetle walking down a blade of grass would be more to your liking. Whatever your preference there are many gems that nature has in store for your awe and admiration.
To check out other Ruby Tuesday postings, just click here, or click on the ruby on the side bar. My appreciative thanks to Mary for hosting this site.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Red Fox Out For a Walk

I'm sure this Red Fox had a purpose other than ours, which was going to find a Moccasin Slipper in bloom, but when it ran out onto the railroad tracks in front of us and took the lead, we followed. It knew we were there, quite a fair distance behind, for every now and then it would stop and and take a look at us. I am always wary and cautious of wild animals when they are close and we kept our distance, relying upon my camera lens to take us closer. It appeared to look healthy and energetic and curious and as we soon discovered, hungry too. I was amazed at the skill of this wily creature for within just a few seconds, it stopped, moved off to the side of the railroad bed, stealthily approached some sort of prey, and returned to the side of the tracks with it in its mouth.

Then it continued on its way down the tracks for another short distance before turning off into the brush.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Melodies of Nature: One Single Impression

These haikus were inspired by the word, melody, which is this week's prompt at One Single Impression. For more poetry on this theme please visit the hosting site.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Spherical Shell: Creative Photography #2

The creative outcome of this photo wasn't really planned but I did like the result. The reflection in the water created a visual extension of the shell and the curve of the dome continued on, seeming to extend and reach down and around and under the surface, giving it an appearance of a sphere. This is a Painted Turtle within the shell.
To view other creative photo entries, please visit Creative Photography . Thanks to Roger for hosting this contest.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Song Sparrow: Sky Watch Friday

All nature is a stage..

My many thanks to Tom Wigley for hosting Sky Watch Friday . For other Sky Watch entries please visit Tom's page.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Hitchhiking Beetle

Well, I find I really have to fall back on the old words 'cute and sweet' to describe this one, for look at it! Don't you think it seems to be smiling at you? Actually the green spots that look like eyes probably aren't. Perhaps the eyes are in the portion of its face that looks like nostrils? The semi disc shape on its front looks like it is made of plastic and the same edging around the rest of it makes it look like some sort of space creature. My lack of knowledge surrounding beetles (for this is what I think this creature is) is really showing here for I don't know the correct terminology to attach to its various parts but I do love the beauty of the colour and design of this little, fascinating looking creature! I had been walking through a meadow looking for butterflies, carrying my larger camera with the hood on it in my left hand, and I had my camera with my macro lens on my right shoulder on its strap. I happened to glance at the camera hood and saw a tiny bug there, so holding both cameras I took a picture of the little beetle and this is what it turned out to look like close up! Pretty cute I think.