31 January 2010

Foxes on the move

While sitting in our kitchen drinking coffee, our neighbor Harley noticed a young red fox in the field across the road. The fox slowly trotted across the field and into the woods before I could get my camera. Within 20 minutes a second, larger, fox appeared in the same field. It's the mating season for foxes and this fox "zigzagged" across the field allowing me to get some pictures before it disappeared into the woods. A couple of hours later Harley spotted a fox crossing his lawn.

25 January 2010

January Thaw

Wikipedia defines "January Thaw" as an observed but unexplained temperature rise in mid-winter around January 25th. It looks like we are right on schedule this year. So far this year we haven't seen much snow fall and the recent predictions of flooding from the National Weather Service seemed to be unfounded, but correct.

The rain started yesterday afternoon and continued overnight. By early morning the local streams were running full and some flooding started.

The small stream by Saylor's

The approach to the Wysox creek bridge was under water and closed to traffic.

The bridge leading to May Cook's.

03 January 2010

Snow Fleas

While walking through the woods after our last snow fall I noticed several dark areas of snow. A closer look reveled hundreds of little oblong specs, 1/16 inch, that sometimes moved/jumped. These little specs were "snow fleas" (Hypogastrura nivicola).

Snow Fleas

The "snow flea" is not a flea at all, but instead is a species of springtail (Collembola). Snow fleas eat decaying organic matter as well as bacteria, fungi and algae. They need not be of concern to homeowners, as they do not cause any damage.

Snow Fleas