A few photos

Bobbleton

Explorer
Mar 12, 2004
464
41
28
NJ
Some shots from this season - mostly herps but one or two other things I found interesting as well . . .

First some non-herps (rare for me)

Velvet ant - when you see them up close like this, it seems much more obvious that its a wasp. The problem is that they NEVER stop running. I had to temporarily trap this one in a little pit of loose sand just to get this lousy shot.


New York Aster?? Just guessing, I'm pretty terrible with these little flowery things.


Early portent of the cold months to come. You can see a lot of low-bush blueberry changing but the huckleberry is going strong. I also chose this picture because it illustrates the visual difference between these two heavily overlapping species (which I think Bob or Jeff brought up not long ago). The leaves that are "sharp looking" and still all green are Black Huckleberry, while the "soft looking" ones that are turning red are low-bush blueberry.



Now the pbtfs - I make sure never to go a season without at least seeing a few.









Also some of your typical barrens snakes:

King:


These are surprisingly abundant, but good luck finding them
Green:


These are hit or miss, but always worth seeing. Unfortunately this is one of the species I suspect gets hit hardest over mistaken identity.
Hognosed:



That's it for now. If I endeavor posting more at once I'll just get lazy and end up scrapping the whole thing. Hope you enjoyed.
 

oji

Piney
Jan 25, 2008
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Browns Mills
The one where the frog is turning his head is excellent! Almost like he's saying " Do you mind, can't a fella get a little privacy? "
 

turtle

Explorer
Feb 4, 2009
633
165
43
a village...in the pines
We call the velvet ants "cow killers"...they are nasty. I particularly love the colors already of the low bush blueberry - almost "Warhol-ish" when mixed with the leaf green colors. And there is no doubt that the second picture of the pbtf takes the cake. I have expected to see more herp specimens this year while plant searching but more often the birds are proving to fill my field of vision! It's all good and your photos are wonderful. Thanks

turtle
 

Teegate

Administrator
Site Administrator
Sep 17, 2002
22,489
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Wonderful photo's. My snake encounters have been less than normal so far this year, so it is always nice to see them.

Guy
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
11,843
2,269
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Pines; Bamber area
Great color Bob. That tree frog is great to see in that position. I see so many of the same old-same old. That one looking back at you is refreshing.

In regards to that Aster, that is the same one Guy and I encountered Saturday. I had some difficulty keying it out, but it is Slender Aster (scientific is Aster gracilis). However, now it is called Eurybia compacta. This kind of unsettled me. To me, it will always be an Aster. Here is why it changed.

From Wikipeadia:

"The first name applied to the slender aster was Aster gracilis, which was given by Thomas Nuttall in 1818. Asa Gray later decided that it was better treated as a variety of Aster surculosus. When Guy Nesom decided to transfer many of the North American plants within the genus Aster to Eurybia, the plant needed to receive a new name as a Eurybia gracilis had already been used for a different species named by George Bentham in 1837, and now placed in Camptacra"

PS: the reason I had trouble keying it is that Aster gracilis is supposed to have basal leaves with long petioles. This one did not exhibit that trait, but thats just the way it is. It can't be anything else.
 

cousinmike

New Member
Jun 16, 2009
3
0
1
54
Great shots, especially of the herps. I'll be in the Barrens Labor Day weekend armed and ready with my Nikon!
 
Apr 30, 2009
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WOW....great photos. Thanks for sharing. I also love taking photos, but I have to admit, mine are not nearly as good as yours.

Take care
Thanks again!!
 

cranbrake

Scout
Jun 3, 2009
80
10
8
killer shots there bob-esp. your 'flagship',pbtf's......learned something new too-good info for differentiating betw. thje huckleberry and blueberry.
 

woodjin

Piney
Nov 8, 2004
4,274
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Near Mt. Misery
Nice pics Bob, I remember that night we met in the swamp and located a mess of them (pbtf). that was a good time. I always referred to velvet ants as cow killers as well, never had a bad experience with them though. such amazing creatures to observe. I always associate them with sugar sand and lichens.

Jeff