Weekly Notes – October 20, 2013

Clouded Sulfur Butterfly

Clouded Sulfur Butterfly Colias philodice


Bunchberry in Autumn

Bunchberry in Autumn

Fall is all about color and I have found some butterflies and blossoms still lingering in amongst the fallen leaves.  Walking through the woods, this patch of bunchberries glowed a brilliant red in the afternoon sun.

Bunchberry Bloom

Bunchberry Bloom in Fall

As I got closer I found one plant still in bloom!





The brook trout pictured below has the beautiful deep red color pattern displayed during the spawning season each fall.

Brook Trout

Brook Trout Salvelinus fontinalis with fall spawning colors.

I caught up with Toby Day from the Enfield Fish Hatchery recently.  He was out stocking Brook Trout in ponds off of the Golden Road in T3 R11, Piscataquis County.  Trout are considered a cold-water species that is specially adapted to the clear spring-fed ponds and brooks in Maine.  Although there are many ponds that support native populations of trout, IF&W stocks ponds from state run fish hatcheries to maintain a healthy population.

IF&W fish stocking truck

IF&W fish stocking truck

At the IF&W Maine Wildlife Park you can visit the Dry Mills Fish Hatchery where they raise Brook Trout.  The park is open daily until November 11th when it closes for the winter.  Click here for more information and to visit Maine Wildlife Park …..

   IF&W fish stocking report   Click here for the 2013 IF&W fish stocking report….

Green Frog

This Green Frog Rana clamitans decided it was time to head for hibernation.

The full moon occurred on October 18th, the waning gibbous moon can be observed this week.  On the 24th Jupiter will be to the left of the moon if you happen to observe it during the wee hours of the night.

As the foliage colors fade the night sky begins to glow with northern lights.  There have been observations reported over the past few weeks.  Click here for a link to the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center….

Black and Yellow mystery beetle

Mystery Beetle

In follow-up notes to previous posts, Fred Gralenski suggests the beetle is a Ladybug Propylaea quatuordecimpunctata  (I think) and….

he took the plunge to fry up some grasshoppers with mushrooms for an appetizer. He tells us:

I fried up some shaggy manes (mushrooms) in butter and a little wine and also added some red legged grasshoppers.  Fit for a King (bird?).  Not bad but the grasshoppers were not fried crisp, so the exoskeltons were tough and chewy.  I guess the moral (morel?) of the story is fry (or roast) your grasshoppers separate from your mushrooms, as mushrooms are too juicy.

Red legged grasshopper with mushrooms