What’s to Eat

The grasshopper in the above photo is being disassembled by a yellowjacket. The meaty parts of the hopper will be transported back to the hive where it’ll be placed in cells containing larvae within the hive. The female wasps are busy this time of year as the hive is perhaps at its largest of the season. I found the parts of a red swamp crayfish on the railing of the boardwalk leading to the Black Bear Overlook. It too hadRead more

Taking a Bite Out of the Crawfish Population

About a month ago I decided to watch our local great blue heron more carefully. The heron can been seen daily stalking across the water, sometimes belly deep, step by calculated step. Every few minutes the heron splashes its head down into the water after some unseen (by me) prey beneath the surface. I wanted to see just what he was catching and eating out there in our little wetland. Ever since I began to see red swamp crawfish inRead more

A Large Pellet

Our resident great blue heron left an interesting object on the railing of the deck at the Main Wetlands Overlook. It was a pellet. As you may know, pellets are undigested pieces of what a bird eats like bones, fur, exoskeletons, feathers and other indigestibles. The bird regurgitates these objects in the form of a pellet ranging from perhaps a quarter inch to many times that, depending on the size of the bird doing the regurgitating and the material containedRead more

Is that Orzo?

I know that this is the middle of August, but I’ve been sitting on this way too long. Back in March, I noticed a pinkish blob at the edge of the pavement as I drove down into Explore the Wild. It was morning and it had rained heavily the night before. As I passed the pink blob I slowed to have a closer at it. The blob appeared as though it might be a small pile of some sort of wetRead more

Walking Crawfish

It has rained the past two weekends. After a rainfall the Wetlands’ crawfish get up and have a walkabout. I’m not quite sure what the reason is for these expeditions, although I believe it to be a search for new areas to colonize by the crawfish. Since their gills need to stay wet in order to function (The gills are attached to the walking legs) the animals can walk around in the wet grass following the rain as long asRead more

Gulp!

It was just after noon on the first Friday of August. It was hot and humid. Earlier that morning Wayne, Camp Counselor, had reported seeing a large crawfish walking across the pavement in Explore the Wild. Over the past couple of months many of these large arthropods have been observed walking the paths of both Explore the Wild and Catch the Wind. Today was no different, or so I thought. I was just about to make the turn out of theRead more

Up to the Challenge

While slowly making its way across the path next to the Wetlands in Explore the Wild, a crawfish suddenly found itself surrounded by gigantic two-legged creatures. When confronted by a passerby, the crawfish stood its ground. Not to be outdone by a biped, no matter how big, the crawfish met the challenge. After a brief skirmish, the pedestrian finally let go of the stick. Touché! Chalk one up for the crawfish. This was just one of three separate crawfish seenRead more