Gotta post

I’ve had a handful of photos from the past few weeks to get to, and have been shirking. To celebrate, we’ll have a few from today instead, because that makes sense…

The past three days have been overcast, mostly raining, and so not a lot of opportunity for nature photos (that I didn’t already fake,) but today at least the rain had stopped and the temperature climbed back up a little. Standing outside the front door, I thought I saw some movement on the Japanese maple and stared at it, thinking I could see something behind the leaves, when I realized the mover was right in front of me, blending in quite well.

Carolina anole Anolis carolinensis blending into Japanese maple leaves
Yeah, yeah, I hear ya, but in my defense, my initial vantage was several times farther than this appears, so the Carolina anole (Anolis carolinensis) was much more subtle – I’ll let you imagine the scene with the surroundings repeating for many times the size of this frame. The anole was probably out for the first time in three days, attempting to gather as much heat as possible from the invisible sun, thus the deep brown color. As for the mottling, that might be related, or it might be from the recent shed (the remnants of which can be seen on the anole’s nose,) or it might be something else entirely. Remember: uneducated photographer, not learnĂ©d herpetologist. (I’m putting myself through college on the proceeds from my photo sales – so far I have a pencil.)

But I took the opportunity while the anole was curiously posing with its mouth open.

Carolina anole Anolis carolinensis perched on Japanese maple with its mouth open
I waited patiently for it to impart some ancient wisdom, because I saw movies in the 80s and played video games, but nothing was forthcoming. I was probably doing things out of order, and had to find the Stone of Coreopsis first…

And then we changed vibes.

Carolina anole Anolis carolinensis looking velociraptory
This is that look right before it figures out how to open the door to the kid storage. Much more impressive in this magnification and cropping – the mouth was about the size of my fingernail, so the threat wasn’t exactly compelling.

One more, only a few meters away.

juvenile green treefrog Dryophytes cinereus perched on day lily leaf
This tiny little green treefrog (Dryophytes cinereus) has been hanging around the same area for close to two weeks, which means it’s about due to find a new spot, if my experience is any judge (remember: pencil.) It is about the size of the top joint of my finger, which makes me believe it’s from late last year’s brood. But it has it all figured out, perched neatly on the leaf of a day lily while sheltered by the larger (though not as cooperatively-colored) peony leaves above it, out of the frame here. It gets a little early morning sunlight, on the days that we have sun anyway, but is in shade for the rest of the day as it gets hot. When it gets hot. One of these days I’ll make the attempt to video more of their activities, but I expect that to be involved: setting up the lights (on AC power) before it gets dark so the frog is acclimated to them, with a tripod that has as good a vantage of future movements as possible, and endeavoring not to move or make any sounds to clue the frog in that there’s danger nearby – it could take hours, is what I’m saying. But the resulting video might net me a notebook, so I should be getting right on it.