Journal for November 6, 2010

The temperature got down to 18 degrees last night – our coldest night this fall.  The flowers have almost disappeared, the summer birds are gone, and the winter birds are arriving.  In the last week I’ve seen the first Northern Shrike and American Tree Sparrows of the season.

Western Prairie – a wintry view

A few late flowers –


New England Aster

A Northern Shrike flew through our bird feeder area yesterday – I don’t think it caught anything.  It flew up to the window where I was having my lunch, stared at me for 30 seconds or so, and then flew into a tree.  The chickadees harassed it while it was in the tree – flying all around it, chirping and dee-deeing.  It didn’t chase any of them.

A beaver built another dam in the creek, inside our culvert.  That’s the one place where we can’t leave a dam, because we’re afraid it will flood our driveway.  The beaver swam away as we arrived to pull out the dam.

Mike, inside the culvert, raking out the beaver’s sticks

I’ve been enjoying seeing so many different kinds of fungi in the woods.  This fall has been wetter than most, so the woods is still moist, and the mushrooms – and lichens – are thriving.  I still can’t identify most of them, but I love looking at the colors and patterns they make.

This is the only one I know.  It’s called Blue-stain, or Green-stain because the mycelium grows in decaying wood and stains it blue.  This is a piece of stained wood.

This shows the fruiting bodies of the fungus.  It’s one of two species – either Chlorociboria aeruginascens or C. aeruginosa.  It would have to be examined under the microscope to tell the difference.


I haven’t even tried to identify the rest, but Roseanne Healy has suggested possible IDs for a few of them.

Stereum – possibly S. ostrea – False Turkey-tail

Plicaturopsis crispa – Crimped Gill

Aleurodiscus oaksii

Possibly Stereum complicatum

Possibly Stereum complicatum

Moss and lichens