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Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally

ERIC P. ORFF
Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer - Wildlife Photographer
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983
nhfishandwildlif@aol.com

NH Nature

New Hampshire Nature Notes by Eric Orff

Monday 09/29/2008 Reflections of color and time. How both are so fleeting.

Today is a perfectly gorgeous and colorful fall day. The brilliant red maple leaves are perfectly reflecting in the sunlight on the Suncook River out back this morning. Life seems perfect. Except our country's financial markets are in turmoil and possibly as bad as the Great Depression. A kind of pall hangs over our heads this day as the government seeks to "bail out" Wall Street. The House is about to vote as I type. Will it work? We all wonder. Not only am I worried about myself and my retirement investments but I worry just as much about the future debt my children and grandchildren will be indebted for through this vote. I do have a knot in my stomach that even a perfect day hasn't unwound yet. ( Now I see the house has voted down the plan and the DOW is down some 600, geeze you guys!) I'm now more interested in voting out rather than in.

But life goes on and goes by. I can't help but reflecting on the years that have drifted by from this date nearly three decades ago when my son was born. And how quickly my two granddaughters are changing as well. It just seems like a good day to spend some time watching the reflections on the river. It too looks perfectly calm and still yet a telltale ripple here and there gives away its passage beneath the golden reflections of it's surface.

Last Thursday I took St. Anslem's ecology class of Dr. Barry Wicklow on our annual tour the Suncook River avulsion here in Epsom. He brings the class here every fall now; This is the third year, to see the changing Suncook River. I was down the river earlier this spring at the end of Rhodora Drive, but I have not hiked in the length of it since taking his class last fall. And what a difference there is since last year. The river has dramatically moved where Leighton Brook dumps into the Suncook River. The river banking has eroded close to 100 feet here since last fall. The old Suncook Rail Road bed is now in jeopardy of being washed away. It is so amazing to see how quickly the river continues to change.

This morning while I stood in my driveway to toss the ball for Koko the acorns were not just occasionally thumping and ricocheting singly down from the red oak across the road, but were pouring out of the tree's branches cascading down through the branches and bouncing across the road into my driveway. But the red oak tree of equal size right next to this one has just a few nuts from what I can see. So not every tree is loaded with acorns, but some sure are.

I sat on my deck the other night through a beautiful sunset watching a few ducks fly by. They were going by in just ones and twos with only one group of three. All were either wood ducks or teal. Nary a mallard or black. I have seen a few small flocks of geese milling about. No migration numbers yet. The Monarch butterflies are drifting by though not in great numbers like last year or the year before. Song birds seem to be few in numbers. We did have heavy rains from a tropical storm for Friday and Saturday giving me 2 1/2 inches of rain in my gauge and bringing the rivers and stream up quite a bit. Far from flood level though. Hurricane Kyle that passed to the east yesterday left less than an inch of rain here. And no wind to speak of. I guess the ocean was a bit tossed according to the news. With all the hurricanes lined up for a while this late summer I thought for sure we would get a little into the mix. I guess the tornado of July 24th was our prize weather for the year. This rain sure has brought the frogs out at night. That reminds me I should be checking my cellar window wells to make sure none are stuck down there. I advise you to do the same.


   

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2008-09-24 Fall is quickly coming on

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2008-10-17 Ooo, la, la what colors. And ADD ducks

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