Ridiculous weather for mid-February, it was 57° at the house in the afternoon and extremely foggy. But before it was 57° I took a morning’s walk in the Big Woods when it was merely in the mid-40s. All of the snow had melted earlier and it seemed more like late March than February.
The soil was saturated with water from the melted snow and there was water, water everywhere in the woods, including flowing down the trail I was on –
And it was foggy as well –
Walking along I saw a number of fungi, many of which I believed I could name (no guarantee of accuracy) and others that were a mystery to me. Here are the fungi –
And there were a few examples of something that looks like a fungus but is quite different, neither plant nor animal, wolf’s-milk slime mold which starts out pink and turns brown with age –
There were other things to see that were of interest, the galleries of the emerald ash borer engraved on a fallen log –
And a rotting log that had been deconstructed by a pileated woodpecker searching for insect larvae; a closer look revealed the parallel vertical marks left by its powerful beak as it chipped into the log –
Speaking of birds, I spent some time watching a white-breasted nuthatch foraging on the ground instead of on a tree trunk as they typically do –
The feature birds of the morning were two golden-crowned kinglets that, in their usual manner, never paused long enough to allow me to get a good photograph – here’s the best of the few I took –
It was time for lunch and I was uncomfortably warm, so home I went.