Thursday, March 28, 2013

Growing Moss, and the First Moth of the Year

I was so hoping, when I went to the woods yesterday, that I would see some Wood Frogs. I know these guys are waking up and getting into mating mode around here (I've heard reports from other southern Connecticut towns), and it was bright and sunny yesterday afternoon with 50-degree temperatures, which seemed like nice Wood Frog weather to me. Unfortunately, the only place near my house where I know I can reliably find Wood Frogs is in Naugatuck State Forest on a section of trail that is currently closed for logging. So, as a second option, I headed off to Southford Falls State Park, but even though I checked out some likely-looking vernal pools, I saw no sign of frogs or their eggs. :(

Oh well, I'll keep my eyes open on future walks. It's early yet, and there will be plenty of time for amphibians in the months to come.

Perhaps I'm getting antsy for signs of anything green and growing, because I kept noticing the moss during yesterday's walk. Here are some of my favorite mossy sights from yesterday afternoon, lovely green/orange textured carpets spreading across the forest floor:

Although I didn't get to see any amphibians, I met a different first-of-the-year creature late last night. I've seen one or two moths flapping against our windows over the past couple of weeks, but this is the first one to pay a visit to our porch light:

This moth is (as best as I can tell) a Roland's Sallow (Psaphida rolandi). I love seeing the first moths of spring, because this means the creature diversity will only expand in the weeks to come! (And I can finally balance out all the birds that take over this blog in the winter.) Plus, this guy's pretty cute -- I'm really liking those red spots above its knees, and its tucked-back antennae:

While a few scattered patches of snow and ice remain, the insects are coming out, and growth is happening. (Especially exciting: This weekend the garden goes into the ground.) Yay, spring!

1 comment:

  1. The mosses are the first signs of green in our woods too. I haven't taken the time to identify any of them due to other priorities, but I have noticed how many different kinds there are.