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More grasslands

 Forgot to mention yesterday, I had another American Woodcock in our woods. Exciting, but alas no photo ;-(   I have seen more of them this year (three total) then I have ever seen before. Also had a Fox Sparrow and Northern Harrier. Neither seen very often anymore at home.

Script lichen (Alyxoria varia). It was really tiny and the black apothecia (fruiting bodies) looks a bit like mouse turds when you look at them under loupe.




Looks like someone spread out. Kinda like a skydiver would.




Rusty Blackhaw was really twisted.





Another angle.





A view of a ravine with beautiful moss!





Front side of a Trout Lily!




Backside of a Trout Lily.





The Redbud trees really have red branches! No buds yet.





Two Trout Lilies blooming with another one to the right. The one on the right may just be coming up.




Rabbit Tobacco (Diaperia prolifera) starting to sprout up!





Coyote scat. It might be a opossum; certainly the right color.





Missouri Primrose seedpod opened at the end. Sorta looks like a brown flower.

This is all of the grasslands for today. I will continue on with the last of grasslands photos in tomorrow's post.



The three photos below were here at our house today.

Texas Paper Wasp (Polistes apachus) was out today at home.




Tiny Bluets (Houstonia pusilla) are getting thick!




Crow-poison (Nothoscordum bivalve) is blooming!


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Keep looking!





Back to grasslands photos

The internet got fixed. YEAH!  Sorta miss it when I don't have it. So on with the grasslands photos!


This is Coryphantha sulcata. One of the common names is Pineapple Cactus. It will have a pretty yellow flower with a red center. Note it has a center spine. 






Blue Funnel-lily (Androstephium caeruleum). It will have a light lavender color flower. It will stay low to grow and has a vanilla scent.





Another view of the first Trout Lily (Erythronium mesochoreum)!






Bright orange crustose lichen on wood.





A pretty shrubby Goldeye Lichen (Teloschistes exilis) plus other crustose lichens.






This is the back side of a Trout Lily. It can be quite bright too!





Wet nostoc! When dry, it looks crusty black.





This Rusty Blackhaw tree was weird how the branch had split. Then it went back together. Weird!






A cache of acorns!







Another Trout Lily!





Close up the the beautiful leaf color. 





Close up the Trout Lily's flower. The flower points more to the ground.




I will do more grasslands photos in tomorrow's post.



At home, the Whitlow-grass (Draba cunneifolia) is blooming at my house!





And the Chickasaw Plums are getting ready to leaf!



Keep looking!


 

Internet is down

 The internet device is broken at my house. It took forever to download the following two photos from grasslands on cell signal. So I will finish up the grasslands post tomorrow hopefully when the Nextlink person fixes it.

We saw a half dozen of the Dainty Sulphurs! Love them!






Devil's Toenail fossil. Tons of them on this limestone prairie! This one was a particular nice specimen!


Until tomorrow...when we have internet again!


Keep looking!





Absolutely purty weather!

 Ah, the temperature was so nice this afternoon. No breeze and 62 degrees, I could not have asked for better. Today's mission on the grasslands was to check if the Trout Lilies (Erythronium mesochoreum) were blooming.

The first critter was this Dainty Sulphur. A delightful find! I have not seen the usual numbers this winter. Yes, they are out in the winter here. There was a Goatweed Leafwing but I didn't manage to get its photo. My shadow scared it off. The Leafwing was the first of the season for me.





Cymopterus (Vesper macrorhizus) was a nice find. This one has a dirty lavender color.






This Cymopterus is more of a dirty white color. Both the same species. Can't wait for their cool seedheads. That is my favorite part of the flower of this species. It was Shirley's too. 





We found multiple fallen paper wasp nests. This one was as wide as my shoe.






I can see an eye on this "critter" and it is smiling!  LOL





This was the first Trout Lily discovered today! Its bloom was not fully open.






Another paper wasp nest! Eventually we saw one still in a tree.





Moss and a crustose lichen on limestone!





This unit has a lot of limestone that is embedded with fossils..





Clam fossils!





A Cymopterus with no bloom and a Missouri Primrose's (Oenothera macrocarpa) seedpod. The seedpod was a bit shiny.






Grama grass seed heads on the ground next to the greenery that is starting to spread on the prairie.



Low temperature this morning was 32. After all that cold, the plants can not be stopped. Nature is wonderful!  I will do more photos from today in tomorrow's post.



Keep looking!



Three Sisters

 This is the second part of our prairie scouting trip on Saturday. This is the Three Sisters farm. David told us he acquired the land in 1991. He named it Three Sisters for his three daughters. Nice name! The land was not in very good shape. David has been trying to restore it. He has planted five acres plots with some not so successful and some that did well over the years. It is still a work in progress. If you check the Ft. Worth Chapter of the Native Prairies Association of Texas blog, he said he will keep us up-to-date on his progress. Go David!


This is part of David's prairie. Looks very golden in the dampness.





Fallen log with Turkeytail shelf fungus.





A puffball fungus.





Tiny shiny brown gilled mushroom.





Crust fungus from the underside of a fallen log.





A tiny cricket was also underneath. It is just off center to the right.





Round-headed Bush Clover (Lespedeza capitata) really stood out!





Turban Lichen (Cladonia peziziformis) found on a fallen cedar. I don't ever recall finding this species on cedar.




The color really pops on this lichen! I'm not sure of the species.





White fungus on the underside of this fallen log. Fungus is such an important part of the ecosystem.





Young grasshopper, possibly a Mermiria species.





This puffball fungus has purple spores. It also has a flattop. I'm not sure but it might be a Calvatia cyathiformis.




Beautiful moss! Moss can often be found on the ground in the prairie among the grasses and forbs. 





Meadowlark feathers. Mourning Dove feathers were found as well.





Croton species.






Pretty tiny mushroom!





A polypore fungus! Pretty cool!





This fungus was also on the same cedar. I'm not sure if it the same fungus as above; maybe just younger.






This one was interesting the way it wrapped around the knob.


Closer view.




Orange crustose lichen.







The group walking in David's prairie. It was a great day despite the damp weather. The prairie supports a lot of life from the grasses, forbs, fungus, critters, and so much more. Thank you David for sharing your wonderful prairie!





This huge burl was on road near David's farm. Pretty awesome, eh!


Thank you all for joining me on the Prairie Seeker's scouting tour!  I always enjoy a good outing!  Thank you to David, Carol and Richard for sharing their prairies with us!





Keep looking!