Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Black Rat Snake and More

Black Rat Snake, and more 9/11/13

Ruby-throated Hummingbirds...

I didn't notice any hummingbirds today.  Will monitor tomorrow to see if they have left us.  Here is a migration map.  Our Hummingbirds migrated across the Gulf of Mexico, about 400 miles or so.  This is quite an ordeal for them.  According to "before departing on their northern migration each bird will  have nearly doubled its weight from 3,25 to over 6 grams; when it reaches the U.S. gulf coast, it may weigh only 2.5 grams."  And God forbid they encounter any head winds.


The map is from Wikipedia, courtesy of Ken  Thomas:    Also he has a website:

Basilica Orb Weaver (again)  Pretty little fellow know for weaving horizontal or near horizontal webs.

 Something in the Pea family

Ripper, the dog,  getting yelled at for approaching this snake.  This is a Black Rat Snake, Elaphe obsoleta.  Harmless, of course, but we are hoping to train Ripper to avoid snakes.  We hike a lot and sooner or later we may together encounter a Copperhead.  (We actually did once, but someone had killed it and left it on the trail)

Close up shot.  Black Rat Snake, Elaphe obsoleta

A great reference site for North GA and nearby is

For a week or so our fields have been swarming with these Carolina Satyr butterflies.

Carolina Satyr, Hermeuptychia sosybius

A Cardinal Flower, Lobelia cardinalis L. as they are often seen perched on a stream bank.

This appears to be a Spiderwort species, possibly Tradescantia subaspera, it seems more diminutive and compact than the common species, Tradescantia viginiana

Old Man of the Woods, Strobilomyces confusus  Common and distinctive.  Late Summer through early fall.  I was able to identify this by searching this University of Georgia site: