This site is for people who like plants -- growers, enthusiasts, aesthetes, novices and professionals, those who appreciate wild things and those who appreciate the cultivated. I garden in Chelsea, and I've been visiting people's yards for 20+ years in the course of my work. My goal is to make this blog a community project, so if you share my interests, please consider becoming a participant and contributing content -- Guerin. Info: guerinw@gmail.com

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Tree frogs and migrating birds


We have a hot tub behind out house. We have mixed feelings about it because of its carbon footprint, and now use it only in spring and fall. But whatever . . it's a super habitat for tree frogs. There are invariably four or five of them keeping warm under the cover. The interesting thing for us it to see what color they will be -- sometimes grey, sometimes silver, sometimes mottled.

A different animal issue entirely: my 92-year-old father invited me to be his guest last week on a cruise along the St Lawrence Seaway. A good trip, great food, never even KNEW that such a place as the Madeleine Islands existed. The only disturbing bump during the week was when I decided to stay up late and I happened to visit the upper deck: some thousands of migrating birds had become confused by the lights of the ship and had landed on the deck, became trapped in netting set up for the golfers, or just didn't know WHAT to do. I gathered four specimens (one flycatcher and three sparrows, pictured here) and in the morning one worker told he had tossed an estimated 50 dead specimens overboard. I have absolutely no idea how many exhausted animals might have met their demise in the waters. The ship's engineer was dismissive and told me the bright lights were because of 'regulations'. Now here's a cause for someone to take up!

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