Wandering Around Wagon Hill

This past Sunday I spent a couple of hours exploring the trails and forest around the Wagon Hill conservation area off Route 4. The conservation area reaches past the hill to the forest and wetlands along Great Bay. I spotted a great blue heron in the stream which cuts through the marsh into the bay.

Nearly all of the red maples have dropped their vibrant red leaves by now, especially the most colorful examples throughout the wetlands. But many of the oaks are very colorful still.
Below is a shot from the point which juts out into great bay.

Sunlight Spider

I found this spider in college woods a few days ago, it almost seemed as if it was clinging on for dear life as the seasons change and winter begins to slowly creep in.
The image didn’t come out as sharp as I hoped, I probably rushed the shot too much as I tried to catch it in the sunlight, while it briefly poked through the thick forest canopy.

Chapman’s Landing

My wetland ecology class visited the riverine salt marsh at Chapman’s Landing in Stratham NH off 108. It is alongside the Squamscott River, a beautiful spot with all sorts of interesting plants and animals such as ribbed mussels and common glasswort, a vibrant red succulent plant. Below is a view of a portion of the marsh. I have developed a new appreciation for wetlands as I learn more about them. Not only do they provide essential ecosystem services such as water filtration, and can act as a storm buffer on the coast, but they are also beautiful and full of interesting natural wonders.

Red Eft

I was at Harvard Forest, in Petersham Massachusetts, recently for work, I found this eastern newt (in the red eft stage) underneath a basket used for collecting foliage. They can live up to 12-15 years in the wild, and spend a couple of years in the red eft terrestrial juvenile stage before returning to the water in the aquatic adult stage.