Heber Down Conservation Area: March 21, 2020

Today I drove (still no traffic) to the Heber Down CA just north of Oshawa. A “down” (usually spelled “downs”) refers to ” a rolling upland characterized by a lack of trees and used mainly as pasture.”

In fact, there is quite a variety of terrain here and many families were out walking on this sunny, -5 degree day.

Some of the trail goes by a stream:

and by a pond:

There is some snow and ice remaining:

Trail scenes:

Though not as exciting perhaps as the Barred Owl I photographed on March 19, I did hear my first Killdeer of the spring flying far overhead. No other migrant birds except for Robins who might be found here in winter.

American Crow

Species list: Blue Jay, American Crow, Black-capped Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, White-breasted Nuthatch, American Robin.

In my backyard, the male Goldfinches are starting to get their gold breeding plumage.

Some Botany:

Trembling Aspen (Populus tremuloides))
Poison Ivy berries (Toxicodendron rydbergii)
Hop-hornbeam (Ostrya virginiana)
White Ash (Fraxinus americana)
White Spruce (Picea glauca)
Bitternut Hickory (Carya cordiformis)
Red Oak (Quercus rubra)
Alternate-leaved Dogwood (Cornus alternifolia)
Basswood (Tilia americana)
Norway Spruce cones after squirrel work
bits of Norway Spruce cones
Red Oak (Quercus rubrum)
Red Maple (Acer rubrum)
young White Birch (Betula papyrifera)
Juniper (Juniperus communis)
Pine Cone Willow Gall
White Cedar (Thuja occidentalis)
Yellow Birch (Betula allegheniensis)
Pennsylvania Sedge (Carex pensylvanica)
Gray Goldenrod (Solidago nemoralis)
Lichen growing on Moss
Willow buds in flower
Scotch Pine cone (Pinus sylvestris)
Red Cedar (left) and White Cedar (right)

NATURE POETRY

We can only be said to be alive in those moments
when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.     – Thornton Wilder (1897–1975)

Miles Hearn

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