Readers’ wildlife photos (and a video)

June 12, 2021 • 8:00 am

Send in your photos, please.

Today’s selection comes from Rachel Sperling, whose notes and IDs are indented. Click on the photos to enlarge them.

Apart from the video, these were all taken in Connecticut and the New York section of the Appalachian Trail, which I’m hiking with a friend.

A pair of mute swans (Cygnus olor) on the reservoir near my house.

A pair of black vultures (Coragyps atratusamid some glacial erratics in northern Connecticut. I think this is a bit north of their normal range. I used to see them fairly often when I lived in Maryland.

Canada goose (Branta canadensis) on Lake Zoar in Connecticut. Nothing terribly exciting about a Canada goose, but this one was sitting on some eggs, and it was around Mothers’ Day, so I thought it was sweet.

Red columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) on the Appalachian Trail in New York.

Bleeding heart (Lamprocapnos spectabilis)on the Appalachian Trail:

Pink ladyslipper (Cypripedium acaule) on the Appalachian Trail.

A couple of millipedes (Apheloria virginiensis) on a trail in Sharon, Connecticut. The one on the right is giving a ride to an inchworm, but I’ve no idea which species of Geometer moth it might be.

Finally (for now – I’ll be back on the trail this weekend, I hope!) here’s a video I took back in December of 2017, when I was living in New Hampshire. My cat Lloyd (Felis catus) was intensely interested in a supremely unruffled American goldfinch (Spinus tristis). I don’t know much about bird intelligence, apart from what I’ve read about crows, ravens, and parrots, so it surprised me that the goldfinch would understand that it was safe from the cat.

18 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos (and a video)

    1. Lloyd Alexander! One of my favorite authors as a child and – I later learned – a crazy cat man. I interned for his publisher in college so I got to correspond with him and found him to be a very gracious human.

  1. These are great shots, Rachel! I love Canada Geese especially when they’re in flight. I’ve experienced them flying in formation right overhead, when I’ve been on my 3rd floor balcony, and what a great thrill to hear and feel the wafts of air coming off their wings.

    1. Thank you! Yeah, I know they’re nuisances, but they are beautiful in flight, especially on a fall evening when they’re heading south. There’s something beautifully melancholy. We were just charmed by the eggs and the prospect of goslings. I hope they made it; Mama Goose chose an awfully busy beach for her nest.

    1. Thanks! He’s a cutie. We no longer have a balcony, and I feel badly because the birds provided him with so much entertainment.

    1. Thanks! Yeah, they’re generally a nuisance but we saw the eggs and thought “Ooh, goslings!” I hope they make it; she built her nest on a beach that tends to get crowded after Memorial Day.

  2. It doesn’t surprise me at all that the birds understand they are safe from the cats on the other side of a window.

    Our bird feeders are south of my office. The whole south side of our house has large windows and wide windowsills, so our cats hang out on my office windowsills and watch the birds a lot. The smaller birds spend a lot of time on the windowsills, and are totally unperturbed about the cats, even when the cats are going crazy pawing the windows.

    And, I think I’ve mentioned that we have a roadrunner that comes up to the front door when only the storm door is shut and taunts the cats from the front porch.

    Neener, neener, neener, and all that.


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