Saturday (16-October-2021) — New Jersey

Autumn Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the day viewed at the birdfeeder and in the backyard: Mourning Dove, Turkey Vulture, Red-tailed Hawk, Blue Jay, Black-capped Chickadee, American Robin, House Finch. Early in the morning there were no birds around the birdfeeder. I noticed the Red-tailed Hawk up in a tree being harassed by a troop of noisy Blue Jays. Once the hawk left, some birds did show up at the birdfeeder. Late in the afternoon as a storm approached, the sky was full of Turkey Vultures soaring ahead of the dark clouds.


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

Mid-afternoon a Monarch butterfly showed up and started feeding on a Butterfly Bush. I’m not sure if it is the same Monarch from yesterday. The wind was picking up as a storm approached, but the butterfly held on tight while it continued to feed on the nectar. It kept coming back for a good two hours. It needs to fuel up for the long trip to Mexico, or where ever the east coast Monarch’s go to hibernate. I got lots of pictures.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Butterfly Bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Butterfly Bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly on a post. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly on a post. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly resting on a bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Butterfly Bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Butterfly Bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Butterfly Bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly resting on a post. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly resting on a bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly resting on a bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Butterfly Bush. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (48.5 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (32.1 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Sun and clouds. Deficit of 16.4 kWh.

Friday (15-October-2021) — New Jersey

Autumn Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the day viewed at the birdfeeder and in the backyard: Mourning Dove, Turkey Vulture, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Black-capped Chickadee, European Starling, American Robin, House Finch.


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

Flowers (and plants) of the day: Chinese Forget-me-not, Cosmos, Marigold, Plains Coreopsis, Teasel.


Flowers and Plants of the Day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Time-lapse video of a day in the wildflower meadow. This section was plated late in summer with Cosmos and Plains Coreopsis. The earlier planting in this section failed, mainly coming up with tall grass instead of the spring to summer wildflowers. I mowed the grass down, rototilled, and covered with a black-agricultural fabric to kill off the weeds for several weeks before replanting. I am now starting to get some flowers even though the plants are not very tall. Another section was planted with Marigold and Zinnia. They are not growing very fast, and have not bloomed. It also doesn’t help that the Deer and Ground Hog continue to nibble on the small plants. [Click on the full screen button, bottom right corner to view a larger image.]

I haven’t seen any Monarch butterflies until today since August. Usually there are some of the group that migrates south to hibernate around in October. One of the places that I usually see them in October is at the Sourland Mountain Preserve. This year the brush along the high-pressure underground gas line was mowed, and there are no flowers to attract the Monarch butterflies. Today, while rototilling one of my wildflower meadows to prepare for next spring I noticed the shadow of a butterfly flying. When I turned around, I saw a Monarch. It landed on a Zinnia flower. I dropped everything and ran inside to get a camera. When I got back outside, I found the Monarch feeding on a Marigold flower.


Monarch butterfly feeding on a Marigold flower. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Deer in the backyard. They keep trying to get into the fenced off areas. Some look pretty scrawny.


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

Waxing Gibbous moon with my new Sigma 150-600 mm sport (L-mount) lens on a Leica SL2 camera.

Waxing Gibbous moon. (David J Mathre)
Waxing Gibbous Moon. Image taken with a Leica SL2 camera and Sigma 150-600 mm OIS lens (handheld). (David J Mathre)

Daily Electric Energy Used (53.4 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (33.3 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Sunny. Deficit of 20.1 kWh.

Thursday (05-August-2021) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the day viewed at the birdfeeder and in the backyard: Ruby-throated Hummingbird, House Finch, American Goldfinch, Common Grackle. The hummingbirds are feeding on both Canna and Gladiolus flowers


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


Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Flowers of the day: Black-eyed Susan, Canna, Cosmos, Echinacea, Gladiolus, Plaines Coreopsis, Poppy, Rose Mallow, Sunflower, Zinnia.


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


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

Butterflies of the day: Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Monarch.


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

Kermit in the pond.


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

Daily Electric Energy Used (53.3 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (73.9 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Sunny. A surplus of 20.3 kWh.

Tuesday (03-August-2021) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the day viewed at the birdfeeder and in the backyard: Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Blue Jay, Gray Catbird, House Finch, American Goldfinch, Chipping Sparrow, Common Grackle.


Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


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

Flowers of the day: Black-eyed Susan, Canna, Cosmos, Nasturtium, Partridge Pea, Plains Coreopsis, Sunflower, Zinnia.


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


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

Both Eastern Tiger Swallowtail and Monarch butterflies feeding on a Thistle flower.


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

Other bugs of the day include a pair of tiny Dragonflies mating, and Milkweed Aphids eating a Milkweed plant.


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

The local Fawns, still with spots are getting bigger. A groundhog in the back wildflower meadow. Kermit the bullfrog in the pond.


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

Daily Electric Energy Used (51.0 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (47.2 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Clouds and sun. A deficit of 3.8 kWh.

Wednesday (15-July-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the Day: Gray Catbird, Northern Cardinal, American Crow, Tufted Titmouse, and House Finch.


Birds of the Day. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Wildflowers of the Day: Pink Poppy, Red Poppy, and Teazel


Wildflowers of the Day. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Butterflies of the Day: Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Monarch, and Silver-spotted Skipper.


Butterflies of the Day. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.

There definitely are two types of Clearwing moths were present. They prefer pink to purple flowers (Bee-Balm, Lemon-Mint, Bergamot, Larkspur, Delphinium). The Clearwing Hummingbird moth (Hemaris thysbe) is larger, and has light-colored front legs. The Clearwing Snowberry moth (Hemaris diffinis) is smaller, and has dark/black colored front legs. I am trying different camera lens combinations to see which is the best to capture images of these moths.


Clearwing Hummingbird Moths (Hemaris thysbe) captured with a Nikon D4 camera and 200-500 mm f/5.6 VR lens. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Clearwing Hummingbird Moths (Hemaris thysbe) captured with a Nikon D5 camera and 80-400 mm VR lens. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Clearwing Hummingbird Moths (Hemaris thysbe) captured with a Nikon D850 camera and 70-300 mm VR lens. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Clearwing Snowberry Moths (Hemaris diffinis) captured with a Nikon D850 camera and 70-300 mm VR lens. Individual images from this slide show can be viewed at my PhotoShelter Gallery.

NOTE: IF YOU ARE HAVING PROBLEMS VIEWING THE SLIDE SHOWS PLEASE TRY A DIFFERENT BROWSER AND LET ME KNOW WHICH BROWSER YOU ARE USING. THANKS!!!

Daily Electric Energy Used (54.6 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (72.0 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Sun and more clouds. A surplus of 17.4 kWh.