Thursday (21-May-2020) — New Jersey

Backyard Springtime Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the Day — Blue Jay, Brown-headed Cowbird, House Finch, Northern Cardinal, Gray Catbird, and Eastern Phoebe. Lots of action at the Eastern Phoebe nest and both parents feed the new hatchlings. It will be interesting to see if they are all Eastern Phoebes or if the Brown-headed Cowbird left any of its eggs in the nest.


Birds of the day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Spring flowers of the day include Rhododendron, Red Oriental Poppy, Five-spot, Allium, and Foxglove.


Spring Flowers of the Day — Portrait mode. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Spring Flowers of the Day — Landscape mode. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

I spent the afternoon on the patio assembling the new Grow Towers and transplanting the indoor hydroponic strawberry plants to the outdoor Grow Towers. The activity was recorded by a Garmin VIRB-360 camera and used to create a time-lapse Little Planet video.

Daily Electric Energy Used (50.3 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. The daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (85.9 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. Lots of sun in the morning with some clouds in the afternoon. A surplus of 35.6 kWh.



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Wednesday (20-May-2020) — New Jersey

Backyard Springtime Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the Day — Blue Jay, Gray Catbird, American Goldfinch, and Eastern Phoebe. A whole bunch of American Goldfinch showed up today. The eggs in the Eastern Phoebe nest above my front door have started to hatch. The parents are now bringing insects, grubs, and worms to feed the hatchlings. I set up a video camera to monitor the nest.

Blue Jay. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1600, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/200 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Blue Jay. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1600, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/200 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Gray Catbird. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1100, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1250 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Gray Catbird. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1100, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1250 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
American Goldfinch. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 220, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1250 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
American Goldfinch. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 220, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1250 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
American Goldfinch. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1000, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1250 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
American Goldfinch. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1000, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1250 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)

Spring flowers of the day include Rhododendron, Red Oriental Poppy, Cosmos, and Foxglove. What I thought was a Gladiolus plant growing up through a crack in the patio blue-stones turned out to be a Foxglove plant.


Springtime Flowers. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

I spent most of the day out on the patio assembling the new Grow Towers and transplanting the indoor hydroponic strawberry plants to the outdoor Grow Towers. The activity was recorded by a Garmin VIRB-360 camera and used to create two time-lapse Little Planet videos.

Daily Electric Energy Used (46.3 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. The daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (81.1 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. Sun with some clouds. A surplus of 34.8 kWh.


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Sunday (17-May-2020) — New Jersey

Backyard Springtime Nature in New Jersey.

Norwegian Independence Day for those in Norway. A busy day today. The trap in the patio was set up overnight for the band of raccoons. Instead, early in the morning the young fox visited several times. Each time circling and sniffing the trap. Then it entered, tasted the apple scraps and backed out. The fox would have been OK, but got greedy. A minute later, it reentered and set off the trap. As soon as it was light out, I let him out of jail.

Springtime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Fuji X-T3 camera and 80 mm f/2.8 macro OIS lens (DAVID J MATHRE)
Springtime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Fuji X-T3 camera and 80 mm f/2.8 macro OIS lens (DAVID J MATHRE)

Birds observed on the patio or while on my daily backyard walkabout include American Crow, Northern Cardinal, House Finch, Brown-headed Cowbird, Gray Catbird, Tufted Titmouse, Eastern Phoebe, and Turkey Vulture. I finally got an image of the Eastern Phoebe sitting on its nest. I also captured an image an immature Northern Cardinal is being fed by its father. I observed this behavior six years ago while on a bird photography workshop in southern Texas. One of the images I took at that time was my most viewed and commented on the now defunct Google Plus.


Birds of the Day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Eastern Phoebe sitting in the nest. Image taken with a Fuji X-T2 camera and 100-400 mm OIS lens (ISO 1600, 261 mm, f/11, 1/45 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Eastern Phoebe sitting in the nest. Image taken with a Fuji X-T2 camera and 100-400 mm OIS lens (ISO 1600, 261 mm, f/11, 1/45 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)


Northern Cardinals. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Father feeding Immature Northern Cardinal. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1600, 600 mm, f/8, 1/200 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Father feeding Immature Northern Cardinal. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 1600, 600 mm, f/8, 1/200 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Male Northern Cardinal Feeding Breakfast to a Young Cardinal at a Private Ranch in Southern Texas. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 lens (ISO 500, 500 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000 sec. (David J Mathre)
Male Northern Cardinal Feeding Breakfast to a Young Cardinal at a Private Ranch in Southern Texas. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 lens (ISO 500, 500 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000 sec. (David J Mathre)
Male Northern Cardinal Feeding Breakfast to a Young Cardinal at a Private Ranch in Southern Texas. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 140, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1000 sec. (David J Mathre)
Male Northern Cardinal Feeding Breakfast to a Young Cardinal at a Private Ranch in Southern Texas. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 140, 600 mm, f/5.6, 1/1000 sec. (David J Mathre)
Male Northern Cardinal Feeding Breakfast to a Young Cardinal at a Private Ranch in Southern Texas. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 1600, 500 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000 sec. (David J Mathre)
Male Northern Cardinal Feeding Breakfast to a Young Cardinal at a Private Ranch in Southern Texas. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 1600, 500 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000 sec. (David J Mathre)

Spring flowers of the day include Five-spot, Dandelion, Johnny Jump Up, Rhododendron, Forget-me-not, Daisy, Flax, Sweet William, California Poppy, and Red Poppy.


Wildflowers of the Day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Red and California Poppy Flowers of the Day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Kermit along with his brother, cousin, and uncle (also named Kermit) out in the backyard pond.


Kermit Clan sunning at the backyard pond. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (52.3 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. The daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (67.6 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. Lots of Sun and intermittent clouds. A surplus of 15.3 kWh.

Weekly Electric Energy Used (356 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. The weekly Solar Electric Energy Produced (514 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. Finely, a week with a decent surplus (158 kWh).


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Tuesday (12-May-2020) — New Jersey

Backyard Springtime Nature in New Jersey.

It was a busy day. Up very early to see the Waning Gibbous moon. Birds for the day included Mourning Dove, Gray Catbird, House Finch, Brown-headed Cowbird, Indigo Bunting, Chipping Sparrow, American Crow, Northern Cardinal, and Rose-breasted Grosbeak. The Indigo Bunting is new here. With all of the rain, the grass is growing fast and needed to be mowed. Afterwards, I took a walkabout and came upon both a Fowler’s Toad, and an American Bullfrog. Lots of early spring flowers including Prunella Vulgaris (also known as Self-Heal, Heal-All, and Woundwort), Jack in the Pulpit, Five-spot, Forget Me Not, Johnny Jump Up, Siberian Wallflower, Crimson Clover, Allium, California Poppy, Flax, Dogwood, and Bethlehem Star (Grass Lily). As a bonus, at the end of the day, I found a White Poppy flower. This is the first regular poppy to bloom outdoors this year. The California Poppies have been blooming for a couple of weeks now.

Waning Gibbous Moon. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 100, 600 mm, f/4, 1/640 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Waning Gibbous Moon. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 100, 600 mm, f/4, 1/640 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)


Birds Viewed from my Patio. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Male Indigo Bunting. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 600 mm, f/4, 1/400 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)
Male Indigo Bunting. Image taken with a Nikon D5 camera and 600 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 600 mm, f/4, 1/400 sec). (DAVID J MATHRE)


Fowler’s Toad. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Kermit the Bullfrog. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


May Flowers — Portrait Mode. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


May Flowers — Landscape Mode. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

White Poppy. Composite of 100 focus stacked images taken with a Nikon D850 camera and 60 mm f/2.8 macro lens (ISO 64, 60 mm, f/4, 1/30 sec). Raw images processed with Capture One Pro and Helicon Focus. (DAVID J MATHRE)
White Poppy. Composite of 100 focus stacked images taken with a Nikon D850 camera and 60 mm f/2.8 macro lens (ISO 64, 60 mm, f/4, 1/30 sec). Raw images processed with Capture One Pro and Helicon Focus. (DAVID J MATHRE)

Daily Electric Energy Used (56.1 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. The daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (82.5 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. Lots of sun. A surplus of 26.4 kWh.


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Sunday (10-May-2020) — New Jersey

Backyard Springtime Nature in New Jersey.

The day after the “Global Big Day” not as many birds around. Granted, I didn’t spend as much time watching. Birds for the day included: American Crow, Tufted Titmouse, Gray Catbird, House Finch, Chipping Sparrow, Brown-headed Cowbird, and Northern Cardinal.


Birds viewed from my backyard patio. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (59.5 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. The daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (90.4 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. Sunny most of the day. A surplus of 30.9 kWh.

Weekly Electric Energy Used (385 kWh) from meter readings the Sense Home Energy Monitor. Weekly Solar Electric Energy Produced (435 kWh) from SolSystems and Locus Energy. A surplus of 50.0 kWh.


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