Despite what the calendar says, it’s summer. And, as what happens every summer, birds that had been caring for and feeding their young in the nest are now out and about with their families teaching the youngsters how to survive on their own. Warm weather frogs, like treefrogs, stimulated by the heat and thunderstorms, are breeding on cue. And plants, that can, like-wise, take the heat, have set blooms. Insects that have been less obvious to us the rest of the year in their larval or pupal stages of life are begining to become more apparent as adults.
Here’s just a small sampling of what you might see if you were to take a walk in the out of doors.
Over the past week and more I’ve seen a family group of Great-crested Flycatchers thoughout the campus. I most often encountered the birds near the Sailboat Pond in Catch the Wind.
On May 19, I noticed a lone gray treefrog perched on the wall on the Sailboat Pond. Soon there were more treefrogs. About three weeks later there were many, many more gray treefrogs.
Down in the Wetlands in Explore the Wild a cousin of the treefrogs was not faring so well.
After spending more than half a year below ground in the root system of dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum), dogbane beetles are once again above the surface munching on the leaves of the plant.
Among many blooming plants at this time of year, shrubby Saint John’s wort is one of the showiest.
There’s been a family group of Northern Rough-winged Swallows in the Wetlands for the past couple of weeks. Their raspy chatter can be heard before you enter the Wetlands. Bullfrogs, Green Frogs, and Green Treefrogs are calling. Daisy fleabane, butterfly weed, and other plants are blooming. No question about it, it’s summertime!