I noticed a black squirrel eyeing the bird feeder on my patio today. For the past 25 years, the squirrels in my backyard have all been the grey variety. I do remember seeing a black squirrel in Princeton several years ago. So maybe the black ones are expanding their range.
Individual images in the slideshows can be viewed here.
While moving some of the wood being used build the stairway to my patio, I noticed some holes in the ground with a relatively large cicada larva. It had spent the last 13 or 17 years in the ground, and is waiting for a rain storm before crawling to the nearest tree. There it will crawl up and got through the final metamorphosis to the insect phase. We can expect the loud noise of the cicada in the near future as they look for a mate.
Later in the afternoon, I saw a scruffy Cardinal at the bird feeder. Probably an immature bird just getting its adult red colored feathers. There were a large number of deer in the backyard. At least four fawns with spots, four or more doe’s, and one buck with its new antlers.
After dark, I could see both the waxing gibbous moon and mars peaking in and out of the clouds. I couldn’t get both in the field of view with a Nikon D4 camera and 600 mm lens. Switching to a Nikon D850 camera and 500 mm lens I was just barely able to get both in the same image. The image of the moon was sharper with the Nikon D850 camera since it was shot with the mirror up, silent mode. With the exposure being used, Mars was just barely visible as a disk.
The leaves on the Japanese maple tree have faded from bright red to brown. Yesterday, some birds found the newly renovated bird bath. They will have to wait until next spring for me to install the solar-powered fountain. The three inquisitive but wary does looked on as I was taking pictures of the statue on the bird bath. Now that it is hunting season, the deer know that they need to stay within 400 feet of a house in order to stay safe.