30 June 2012


If you've followed my blog for any time you'll know I like to take pictures of wildlife, and one of my favorite animals to photograph is a skunk. Today was a good day for photographing skunks.

In the early evening, while driving my old John Deere tractor to our cabin, I spotted this young skunk searching for food along our driveway. Over the years of photographing skunks I have learned how to approach skunks to get close-up shots. I was able to get within a couple of feet of this skunk which was more concerned about its tasty snack (it didn't want to share) than it was afraid of me. After about 10 minutes of photos, we each went back to our prior activities.

As I approached our cabin with my noisy John Deere tractor I spotted another skunk. This was another young skunk, about the same size a the first one but this one had a totally white back and tail. I was also able to get within a couple of feet of this skunk before it wandered to a hiding place under a tree. I continued to see both of these skunks for the rest of the evening as they hunted for food.

29 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

With the regrading of the pipeline right-of-way nearing completion, some of the excavating equipment is being moved to the next location.

28 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

The pipeline reclamation of the Wilmot Pipeline continued today with the seeding of the temporary access road on Richard and Hope Minyon's property. This access road was only used during pipeline construction.

The Wilmot Pipeline right-of-way was reseeded from our wetland crossing north to Jason and Mary Abell's.

Back at the Wesauking Pipeline where it crosses Joyce Road near our farm, two fawns were playing in the road.

27 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

More pipeline reclamation activity on our property today. This crew is working on putting netting down in the wetland area near our cabin.

Back at the valve site, one crew works on placing crushed stone under the Wesauking Pipeline valve assembly as another crew (in background) works on finishing the reseeding of the last section of the Wesauking Pipeline right-of-way on our property.

Over at Jason and Mary Abell's, crews are busy regrading the contour of the Wilmot Pipeline route on the hillside.

A tracked vehicle is loaded with hay bales for mulch on the reseeded areas.

Oops! Structural failure in the stacking.

26 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

At the wetland crossing next to our pond, an excavator uses a pipe to smooths out the topsoil.

With the topsoil graded the excavator works to remove the timber mats from the wetland crossing.

At the valve assembly site, an excavator operator works to install a culvert pipe for the access road.

Deer are grazing near the valve assembly while an excavator and dozer work on the access road less than a hundred yards away.

Another deer moves through the brush while a dozer works on the pipeline right-of-way.

At the end of the day, a young cottontail rabbit checks out the 24 inch "pig launcher"

25 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

The timber mats are being removed from the access road to the pipeline valve site so a permanent road can be constructed. A rock base will be added to the access road along with better drainage.

With the pipeline right-of-ways regraded and ready for seeding, timber mats were stacked wherever space could be found.

Back at the pipeline right-of-way through our woods, a deer (center of photo) walks through a section that was recently reseeded.

24 June 2012

Wildflower - Indian Pipe

The Indian Pipe (Monotropa uniflora) is a flowering plant, but it isn't green. Unlike most plants, it is white and does not contain chlorophyll. Instead of generating energy from sunlight, it is parasitic. Its stubby roots contain fungi that extend in a web-like way to connect up to the roots of conifers.

These flowers are small and the green forest in this photo moss.

This clump of Indian Pipes was found next to our pond.

23 June 2012

Making Hay

It's that time of year when farmers are making hay while the sun shines.

Yesterday's brief downpour of rain delayed hay baling for a day but Jason Abell was able to bale some hay today.

Pipeline Construction

The pipeline reclamation crew was taking advantage of the sunny weather as another load of construction debris is hauled from the pipeline right-of-way. In the background a dozer works on reclaiming a temporary access road that was used during construction of the pipeline.

A view of the reclamation crew working on a section of the pipeline right-of-way on Richard and Hope Minyon's property.

Back at the pipeline valve site, on our property, the crew was busy loading and removing the timber mats used during the pipeline construction.

A forklift operator removes mats from the stack, but somewhere in the stack is a woodchuck that thought it would make a good home.

As the last stack of mats was lifted by the forklift, the woodchuck (lower center in photo) jumped from the moving load and made a dash for the woods.

22 June 2012

Butterfly - Baltimore Checkerspot

While taking my daily walk around our pond I came upon this colorful Baltimore Checkerspot (Euphydryas phaeton) butterfly in the tall grass. The butterfly was very sluggish and may have just emerged from its chrysalis.

About three weeds ago I took some photos of bright orange and black caterpillars in the same area. I now know these were Baltimore Checkerspot caterpillars.

After some looking in the grass I was able to find a Baltimore Checkerspot chrysalis.

A view showing the underside wing pattern and the bright orange antennal clubs and face.

Pipeline Construction

With most of the regrading of the pipeline right-of-way complete, the crew works on clen-up of construction debris.

The finial grading is done at the Wilmot Pipeline valves and the crushed stone has been applied.

21 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

Another warm day and the pipeline reclamation crew is starting to work on the right-of-way and access road on Richard and Hope Minyon's property.

A crew works on debris removal at the intersection of our cabin driveway and the Wilmot Pipeline.

20 June 2012

Pipeline Construction

For the past couple of days a crew has been working on the finial stages of pipeline construction, reclamation and reseeding.

They have regraded the area around the valve assemblies and placed crushed stone under the valves.

Along the pipeline right-of-way, a dozer regrades the topsoil that was stockpiled during the clearing of the right-of-way.

A dozer and excavator work on the finial grading of the topsoil.

Regraded area of the pipeline right-of-way near our cabin and pond.

19 June 2012

Bugs (and other insects)

As I take photos of wildflowers, I sometimes get some good close-up shots of common insects, such as this honeybee on a thistle.

A ladybug (ladybird beetle)

Sometimes the bug is not as common but interesting.

A wasp, there are hundreds of different types.

A white moth.

A brightly colored beetle, but I was unable to identify it.

Some insects I was able to identify.

Yellow-collared Scape Moth (Cisseps fulvicollis)


Spotted Cucumber Beetle (Diabrotica undecimpunctata)