So many hours in the day!
Summertime, so many hours in the day, today the sun comes up at 5:24 but it actually starts to get light at 4 am and the sun sets at 8:54 but there is still some light until 11:21…welcome to the Northern hemisphere! Astronomers hate Summer;) ha! What to do with all that daylight? Sit and watch the world go by!
The bugs are other worldly! Dragonflies with racing stripes, or bright green, or called widow skimmers…ominous sounding isn’t that! Butterflies named after admirals and crescents and then their is the Little Wood Satyr…who thought to name them after a class of lustful, drunken woodland gods? In Greek art they were represented as a man with a horse’s ears and tail, but in Roman representations as a man with a goat’s ears, tail, legs, and horns. Now…seems to be the naturalist was likely drunk;) But then who wouldn’t want to be named after a lustful drunken woodland god, there are worse things;)
When you sit and watch, it is amazing what happens by as well. Creatures that might slip under your radar slither across your path;)
I had a visitor from House Slytherin this afternoon as I was waiting for un-co-operative hummingbirds…you never know who you might meet if you sit and wait. He/she sniffed me out (the tongue thing) and decided I wasn’t a threat so slithered past me across the driveway and lawn to where I was sitting. Hello Grey Rat Snake:) This is the shiniest snake I have ever seen! Had I brushed up on my parseltongue this morning I could have asked her/him if it was the lovely creature that deposited it’s eggs in our compost last year, it did come from that direction:) Are we going to be snake god parents again??!! Yeah! It was longer than I am tall so almost 6′ I’d say and and some small rodent was in that bulge I would imagine;) These endangered snakes are very docile and always a joy to see!
And why the tongue thing? She is smelling you!
The snake’s tongue has a fork on the end of it, because it captures little pieces of smell-odor particles-that are floating in the air. The fork in the tongue that holds this smelly air is brought back into the snake’s mouth and pressed against the roof of the mouth.
The snake has an organ called the Jacobson’s organ inside its head. When the snake’s tongue goes back inside its mouth, it is put into two pits in the roof of its mouth. Those two pits are the entrance to the Jacobson’s organ. The two pits in the roof of the mouth is why snakes have to have that forked tongue.
The air particles that are pressed into the two pits in the roof of the mouth have information that is sent into the Jacobson’s organ. This special organ reads the information about the air’s scent and then sends that information to the snake’s brain. That is how a snake’s tongue is used to smell! How cool is that?!
I did finally get some shots of the lovely Mrs. Ruby Throated Hummingbird. Patience, moving the feeder to an area with more plants worked out. I can sit in the shade and have her in the sun! I thought I caught a shot of her with cobwebs on her beak, nest building, but they must have gotten washed out in the light:) She has been busy! Mr. hangs about bossing everyone around but she no longer takes any guff from him!
A foray out from the lake to replenish the cupboards brought us past an Osprey nest. I had Mike pull over and I jumped out to take some shots. The road is under construction but from the bridge you can look straight at the nest versus putting a kink in your neck looking up! Such amazing flyers these wonderful aguila pescadors-fish eagles in Spanish! They do fish in the lake and we get an occasional flyby but not this close! Hope to see one diving for dinner one day while we are canoeing!
We have had some other late day visitors to the house as well….Rocket has fallen in love…with a little raccoon:) He follows her from window to window craning his neck for a view as she dismissively looks at him and keeps searching for a tasty snack. She cleans out the compost of any edibles and then searches for dropped bird seed. I caught her swinging from the oriole feeder so that has to be put away before sunset now! Now, it could be a he, can’t see anything other than that fluffy tail! She/he is quite bold so am thinking it is one of last years babies that was about:)
They have been hard on the Canna Lilies-between her and the chipmunks they are in tatters! Digging looking for seed and someone has been gnawing on them as well…sigh…sharing with the neighbours;)
When I walk out to check the mail…or run, deerflies in pursuit, there is so much life in the swamps and along the road. I check the progress of my Goldenrod Crab Spider on her milkweed plant-have to check this week to see if she has laid her eggs! How cool is a white and pink spider! Barbie Spider;) The new dragonflies flitter about, I’m slowly getting to know who’s who but new ones keep appearing! Wildflowers are in full swing, daisies, salsify and a small patch of beautiful Purple Flowered raspberries in an old mica mine hole! The laneway seems to be getting narrower and narrower as the plants grow! Beautiful!
Yellow-horned Flower Longhorn Beetle (Strangalia luteicornis), that is a mouthful! What do we call him for short?;) He/she had a friend to share the rugosa rose with:) It’s all those little marvels that can make your day. Funny how there is so much time to gaze at these amazing creatures, but not to do the dishes or laundry;) ha! We HAVE to have priorities! Take the time to smell the flowers, and greet the bugs my friends-I’m off to find that pot of gold across the lake, make that a double pot of gold, if I can beat the wee leprechauns to it;) Saludos amigos!