Sunday, September 19, 2010

Volo Bog - 9.04.10 - Post 5

Last card of shots from Volo. More flowers than critters, but a lot of new ones.

Common Mullien with Three Blossoms
Common Mullien.  I like this for the same reason I like Blue Vervian - the stalk of buds with a few open flowers on the top.  I think it speaks to me about potential - when these flowers fade there will be plenty more to take their place.
Tickseed Sunflower Sunning
Tickseed Sunflower.  For a sunflower they're very, very small.  More daisy-sized.  It's hard to see at this size, but if you look at the flower closer to the top of the shot, the petals closest to the bottom, you can see the veining of the petals.  I'm glad I tripped over this name while looking for something else, because with the black and white stamens, I probably would have started looking for a relative of chicory flowers.

Random Blue Lace Agate Stone
Now this was unexpected.  I've made jewelry with natural stones for years and I like working with Blue Lace Agate.  I never expected to find chunks of it laying in the path as I walked through the prairie.  Reminds me of when I was a kid and we went to South Dakota and there were chunks of pink quartz lying around.  Now obviously, I didn't take it with me - you never take anything but pictures and memories in a natural preserve - but it would have made some interesting jewelry in it's raw form.

Bergamont Bloom
 Bergamont or Bee Balm.  When I see a flower like this, it always seems to be at the end of it's flowering, but really, that's just how they look.  Like coneflowers they just have large, petal-less centers.
Not So Bluet
If I thought dragonflies were tough to shoot, damselflies redefined 'tough'.  First of all, you absolutely can't use auto-focus.  The camera absolutely can't stay focused on something that small and thin.  In the wind I was facing that day, that was even more impossible.  These shots of damselflies aren't great, but I do want to catalog the species I saw while I was out.  This guy looks awfully gray to me, but something like 80% of damselflies are 'bluets' and their primary color is, obviously blue.  I think, judging by his markings that he's a Familiar Bluet.

Much More Bluet
Now this guy is clearly a Bluet.  Blue back, blue eyes, blue and black tail.  Again, I think he's a Familiar, but he really looks to be a whole different color than the guy above.
A Deer Was Here
I never did find a deer out there, but I found evidence that they do, in fact, exist (in this park, not just in general... it's not like I thought deer were mythical or something). This was the only print I saw.  There wasn't one for the opposite hoof or clearly identifiable back hoof prints.
I see! I see! I see a Cutleaf Rosinweed!
Okay, so the centers of these flowers look a lot like the centers of the Tickseed Sunflower above, but the petals are so clearly different.  So I Google "Sunflower Species".  Let me tell you what I didn't want to see.  Sunflower Family: the largest flower family in the world.  Oy, this could take a while.  What I'm finding indicates that this is Cutleaf Rosinweed.  Personally?  I think they look like the flowers in Dr. Seuss books. :)

Egret Egress
This was a shot from the birdblind on the trail.  (How much do I *love* that they have a photography blind set up?  A lot!)  I know these egrets are kind of ubiquitous in Florida, but they're pretty uncommon in Illinois.  I think this is the first one I've caught.  I think he's passing through as the migration gets going.
Lobelia Leaning
I posted picture of this flower yesterday, but it focused on a flower that hadn't quite bloomed yet.  This is the Great Blue Lobelia.  Again, there's something fascinating about the sharp folds and edges in this flower.  It kind of looks like fork.

Lobelia Lobes

Here's a close up of the flowers.  The rows of petals make it look like one long zigzagging petal.

Alright, nearing the end of this hike. Of course, I have about 4 more walks I haven't even started and I'm going on another one tomorrow. :)

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