Saturday, 4 July 2015

Another cocoon: Mourning cloak

Nymphalis antiopa Mourning Cloak
My expert at BAMONA says, take in the cocoons and shelter them. It is amazing to watch.

I use an old aquarium, with an old window screen. Carefully removing the cocoon with tweezers, I tied a string to the threads on the end. Then, I taped it to a piece of vinyl, letting it dangle as it was.
There are two on the go here. The brownish one is a Mourning Cloak butterfly. The other black one is a Virginia Ctenucha.
Left: Mourning cloak, right Virginia
Thursday night it began to change to black.
I knew it was nearly time.
They tell me they hatch in the morning.

Looks like a pretty, upside bat!

5:30 a.m.
My set-up: videocam on the tripod,
thermometer says 10 C., 'twas a cold night!

Sun is rising.
I had three helpers, with Daisy on-call in the Muskoka room beyond.
I set the camera to run, popping back over to it to shut it off and begin a fresh clip. I find this works better. Then, discovering that the spare battery was dying, I'd cleverly replaced it first, I figured I had to plug it all in. That was better.

Time passed. I read yesterday's paper, did some computing, today's blog post, had 3 cups of coffee. By 7:00 a.m., hubby got up. Still nothing. By 9:00 hubby was watching tennis. Raonic won. At 9:30, I figured I'd better get my workout done. When I came back upstairs, it had broken free!
It hung on it's cocoon for over two hours. I moved it to the railing, to be out of sight of cats.

Mourning Cloak emerges from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.
I waited all morning! The visible process took 10+ minutes, I sped it up 4 x's the speed. It took 2+ hours to rest and then fly away.

Friday, 3 July 2015

Birds, bugs, babies!

Common Yellowthroat
Everything is growing and hatching...Common Yellowthroat, a new one for me.
The Osprey are doing well.
The Herons are getting huge!
Goldfinch, and Waxwings are busy.
Butterflies and raspberries, too!
Bonus of the dead elm trees
easy to take a photo!

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Book Review: Under a Dark Summer Sky

Alligator in Florida
courtesy of Snowbird Dale Peacock!
Yesterday, a day of clouds and rain, ironically. I was under a dark summer sky. I knocked off early and began reading this book. I was in the Muskoka Room, with Daisy sleeping beside me in her cat bed and Annabelle on my lap. The bugs are really bad and I was happy to be behind the screen!

It was a cool day, and having done vacuuming, and gathered garbage, I decided I would take it easy!

I adored this book. It was a page-turner. It is well-written, and I didn't spot any editing errors, which is a good sign to my mind.

The setting was amazing, with rich similes and metaphors colouring the prose. I don't need to take it apart, as it was one of those books where I was taken to another place. It worked beautifully!

I've only spent two days and one night in Florida. Hubby whisked me away Dec. 25/26 for a birthday treat. This was a wonderful trip both in time and place. It is timely, as there is much in the news about the way we treat both older and more recent veterans.

Vanessa Lafaye
On Sale Date: June 9, 2015
$14.99 USD
400 pages
Trade Paperback
Fiction / Historical / General
5.5 in W | 8.3 in H
9781492612506, 1492612502

Contributor Bio: Vanessa Lafaye is a Florida native, now living in the UK. She has worked for nearly 30 years in academic publishing, for Oxford University Press, Blackwell Publishing, and Wiley. She has published numerous articles in British broadsheets, and several short stories. She lives in Wiltshire. This is her first novel.
Summary: The Help meets The Perfect Storm in this debut novel set in 1935 in the broiling Florida Keys
Heron Key is already weighed down with secrets when a random act of violence and a rush to judgment viscerally tear the town apart. As the little island burns under the sun and the weight of its inhabitants' secrets, a devastating storm approaches, matching the volatile atmosphere in the town with the unstable sky above. Beautifully written and seductive,Under a Dark Summer Sky is at once a glorious love story, a fascinating slice of social history, and a mesmerizing account of what it's like to be in the eye of a hurricane.
Click here to see more

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Flags and tattoos ready for Canada Day!

My new flags! Artist: Curtis Wilson, in Campbell River, B.C., where my brother lives!
My pasta flag for last night's dinner.

First up, putting on our tattoos! Izzy was really good at this! We all had one! Then we did some colouring until it was time to leave. Grampa was watching tennis, although he was hard-pressed to find it. TSN had on the hockey drafts on 5 channels, and yet we have several top Canadians in the tournie.

What a great Canada Day! After a false start in Perth (no face painting), we found some fun, and rain, in Smiths Falls.

The Crystal Palace was deserted.

There wasn't too much going on...despite promises. We walked along the Tay River, to where the boat rentals were situated.  The min-golf wasn't ready, due to the amount of rain we've had. Another time! The Food Table volunteers were selling burgers.

We checked and went on into Smiths Falls. Unfortunately, the heavens chose to shower us. AFter waiting nearly an hour, Jos couldn't get her face painted. Isabelle had a grand time and after a short line-up for a hamburger, she went on the slide, had a freezie, and then sheltered under the canopy!