Woooo, I’m a ghost!

What that title means is that I’m here, but you’d never be able to tell, at least not from my posting or indeed from the number of photos that I’ve shot recently. There’s been too much going on, yet not anything worth mentioning here (and you know that’s not exactly a high bar.)

I got out, very briefly, in the past couple of days to do a few pics, even though the fall colors aren’t really too impressive now, partially due to the weather conditions, partially due to my delay in pursuing them. I can always find the occasional tableau that makes it look like I know what I’m doing, but nothing that’s going to win awards or acclaim or my own sitcom.

fall foliage against sky at West Point on the Eno
The weather has gotten a bit brisk, with a couple of overnight frosts, and the frogs within the front planters have long ago vanished, I’m almost certain burying themselves in the soil of the pots. Curiously, however, while The Girlfriend and I were doing a little autumn yardwork yesterday, I spotted a small Copes grey treefrog (Hyla chrysoscelis,) again no bigger than an actual thumbnail, barely nestled in the fold of a vinyl cover in the backyard.

juvenile Copes grey treefrog Hyla chrysoscelis semi-protected in vinyl cover
Where it sat, it had a good view of the two of us marching back and forth, and was clearly aware of our presence though not too concerned with it, and it was in the same spot when I went past it much later that night, though a slightly different position. There’s a front pushing through and the rain due any minute, so perhaps it was enjoying the warmth and anticipating the moisture? I certainly expected it to be holed up for the winter, and I haven’t seen it anywhere in the vicinity for at least weeks.

One of our tasks for the day was repotting a couple of bushes, which provided another small surprise. As The Girlfriend shook out some potting soil from an open bag we’d had sitting under the porch, a bright green misshapen object distinguished itself from the nearly-black soil, and I realized what it was almost instantly, before it roused from its winter stupor and began trying to right itself. One of the resident green treefrogs (Hyla cinerea) had wintered itself within the bag, which would have been a pretty good choice if it hadn’t been for our rude intrusion. If you’ve ever wondered what an amphibian look of reproach was, it’s this:

adult green treefrog Hyla cinerea unearthed from bag of potting soil
adult green treefrog Hyla cinera having enough of our shenanigansI quickly moved it to a safe location so we could continue our chores, but knew I’d be back to do a couple of photos. When I eventually returned, it had taken up a sleeping position against a rainbarrel, but I attempted to convince it to settle into the pot of the newly-transplanted bush, even very gently burying it to give it the idea – it was having none of this, and was making the effort to leave us well behind. After the images, we let it be and so have no real idea where it got itself off to, but I expect that we’ll see it again come spring, when perhaps it will have forgiven us. Or perhaps not. You know frogs and grudges.

One more autumn pic, which brings us to just about the total number of images that I’ve shot is the past two weeks or so worth sharing – it’s been pretty bad. Maybe I need to plan a trip out to Hanging Rock State Park. Somewhere, anywhere, as long as it has something more to shoot than here – but of course this also requires the time to expend on it. Any avid readers out there want to spot me airfare to Belize or Costa Rica? I’ll make the rest of it work if you do, and I promise to present at least an extra post or two in appreciation – I’m that kind of guy.

autumn colors shot up the trunk

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