17.08 | Nature Notes (Feb 19-25)

Photo of Snow Bunting
Snow Bunting | Hollis, ME | 25 Feb 2017

Highlights of the Week

The first pulse of (mostly male) Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles arrived this week from the south. Other FOYs for me included Brant, Rough-legged Hawk, and Ruffed Grouse.

Near record warmth unlocked local waterways, resulting in an uptick of Ring-necked Ducks, Wood Ducks, and Green-winged Teal, among others.

And, highlights of a birding trip along Route 16 in Oxford County, ME included 7 Gray Jays, 12+ Pine Grosbeaks, and 31 Snow Buntings.

Wild Edible of the Week

I consumed several cups of Yellow Birch twig tea this week. To begin, I visited a forest rich with Yellow Birch and located a couple of trees (with reachable living branches) who could benefit from thinning. I carefully cut a small handful of twigs to bring home, enough for several servings. To prepare the tea, I scraped the bark off of a few twigs and let the scrapings soak in cool or warm water for 1-3 hours.

Moon Challenge Report

I completed my Tree Twig Moon on Saturday. See my moon challenge recap post.

Nature Challenge of the Week (for you, the reader)

Locate and photograph (or sketch or simply observe) at least three types of lichen. Cemetery stones and tree bark are two good places to search for lichen.


 

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