To Find A Yellow Crested Orchid

Teegate

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All,

Fortunately, Bob is always compelled to search out many of the rare plants in the barrens, and today we set our sights on an elusive and rare orchid. It is called the Yellow Crested Orchid ( Habenaria cristata) and is not easily found, especially in large numbers. Our adventure together took us down a dim road as we headed for our destination a distance away. Bob stopped when he noticed other rare plants and we exited the vehicle to examine them. I soon was roaming the road and noticed a yellow flower that was unfamiliar to me. It turns out that our intended search for the day was over, I had found what we had come for.

So if there is one there may be more we said to ourselves, and we quickly started scanning the road. It turns out we had driven over 14 plants and crushed at least one. Bob straightened it out hoping to save it, but it appeared the damage had been done. We spent the next half hour examining and counting them all, and obviously photographing them. Then we moved on. After arriving home this afternoon I was extremely unhappy with every photo I took and I just had to go back. So along with my wife and Jessica we returned to make things right if possible.














This next photo clearly shows you how fragile these plants are. This is the plant we ran over just 8 hours earlier. Sorry Bob :(







Moving on this morning, we traveled all over the area we were in and found a wasp that just loved to land in this plant. It just kept coming back.








Aster







An interesting caterpillar







After all the work we put into the “Project,” we found White Fringed Orchids all over the place today.












A frog that let us get really close











Orange Milkwart (Polygala lutea)





Guy
 

bobpbx

Piney
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Stunning shots Guy, every single one of them. Just beautiful.

I really enjoyed the day with you. Its great being way out in the pine barren wilderness.

PS: yup, I'm pretty bummed out about that orchid. But, we'll go back on foot next year.
 

Teegate

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Stunning shots Guy, every single one of them. Just beautiful.

I really enjoyed the day with you. Its great being way out in the pine barren wilderness.

PS: yup, I'm pretty bummed out about that orchid. But, we'll go back on foot next year.
Thanks Bob! And I will write the date on my 2010 calendar :)

Guy
 

Teegate

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Guy, do you shoot with a tripod?
No. I have two of them, but they are just too hard to carry out there. And I have a tendency to leave things behind like my walking stick, phone, camera case, and almost anything else in my hands. Today I walked around telling Bob I was sure I left something behind because my hands were empty.

Guy
 

oji

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Jan 25, 2008
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Looks like you all had a good day in the pines. Everytime I walk through the woods my eyes are scanning the undergrowth for colors in all the green. It's a bummer when you take a picture that looks good out in the field but is blurry when it's downloaded on the computer.
 

bobpbx

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On my way to meet Guy this morning I was shocked to see two dark-phase timber rattlers on the dirt road I was going down. The 15 degree temperature drop may have driven them to seek some sun on the road. It is uncanny how calm they are despite how deadly they can be.



One of them:



And the other:



Here is a king I found on 539. Freshly dead but I could not feel a thing wrong with him, and he was still warm:



This is Sabatia. There were some huge plants out there due to the rains.



I like the blue color of these asters. They are vibrant this year. Everything is.



The orchid in Guys photo right after I ran over it. I am sad...it was not intentional.

 

Teegate

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It's a bummer when you take a picture that looks good out in the field but is blurry when it's downloaded on the computer.
That's for sure!

Guy
 

Teegate

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Nice snake photo's Bob! If I had been closer when you called I would have been there to see them.

Hey.... I forgot one!




Guy
 

manumuskin

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Bob,,

it's a little late for mating season but not too late.The way the one snake is following the other i bet anything the one in back is a male and he was scent tracking the female for a little fun in the sun. Might be some baby rattlers out there come late september.A lot of times late hatchlings don't make it through hibernation but if they get a couple good feeds in hopefully they will.
Al
 

woodjin

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Nov 8, 2004
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Great photos and congrats on finding the rare yellow crested orchid. I always liked asters and their purple blue color. Because they are somewhat common, they remind of one of those plants that I associate with the pine barrens. BTW I saw some turks cap along 532 the other day.

Really like those snake pics Bob. To see two rattlers is really something. I never have. was this near the den site? Nice king snake also.

Jeff
 

dragoncjo

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Aug 12, 2005
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Those two TR's were probably about to mate or just did. TR's start their mating season around now until september. Found a pair mating Saturday in the pines........

Bob have you been to that TR shed site, rookery spot yet this year?
 

manumuskin

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Those two TR's were probably about to mate or just did. TR's start their mating season around now until september. Found a pair mating Saturday in the pines........

Bob have you been to that TR shed site, rookery spot yet this year?
thats what i meant by fun in the sun:)

i did have no idea they mated this late.i assumed it was earlier like most snakes.Then again I"m not taking into account they have live young so theirs no delayed egg hatching period so they can get the whole birthing process over faster.makes sense now that i think of it that way to mate later.
Al
 

bobpbx

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Those two TR's were probably about to mate or just did. TR's start their mating season around now until september. Found a pair mating Saturday in the pines........

Bob have you been to that TR shed site, rookery spot yet this year?
Yes, and one was there curled up. These 2 were 4/5ths of a mile from there as the crow flies.
 

dragoncjo

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Bob you should check back in september for neonates....I'm guessing your finding gravid females at that spot.....as for the ones on the road they could be gravid as well....that population basks on the roads alot there.
 

Teegate

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The yellow orchids are blooming. Jessica and I found one and there are a few more ready. My photo's really turned out bad in the early morning sun so I need to go back. Here is one poor shot.

Guy
 

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oji

Piney
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They're starting to bloom around here. I'm also watching a nice population of Goodyera pubescens and a few Tipularia discolor that are starting to bloom.