Fire danger

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Spring azure butterflies mate among the dry leaves on the forest floor. With the fire danger so high, the faintest rustle calls for a closer look.

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The red-tailed hawk lies headless in the woods. Think of it, that hooked beak passing harmlessly through some scavenger’s belly…

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All the while we eat our picnic lunch, shadows of water striders glide over the bottom of the creek like six-spotted dice. Just as we finish, fifty feet away, a limb crashes down.

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Sunlight floods the forest in April as at no other time of year. The sun arcs as high above the horizon as in August, but almost nothing is in leaf. So each blossoming shadbush stands just within view of the next – a situation no doubt intended more for the benefit of insects than for us.
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Spicebush stands in wet clay, opening miniature replicas of the sun.

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The blush on the ridgeside deepens as the red maples set their winged seed.

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Though poised for fight rather than flight, the buck’s antlers were wings of a sort, too. Warm temperatures and a shrinking creek draw vultures, and one lifts off at our approach. Did I really hear, or merely imagine, a momentary clash of tines and pinions?

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

11 Comments


  1. Nice photos. I love the “miniature replicas of the sun” and the red maple seeds.

    Reply

  2. Are you kidding me?

    Since when do you take such beautiful photos?

    Do you have a new camera?

    Are you getting more macro?

    Are Paula and qB going to have to create room for the new kid on the block?

    Fantastic suite. Continue.

    Reply

  3. huzzzah huzzah, dave
    beautiful photos today

    I posted a note on my front door
    yesterday
    to an expected guest
    and a beautful moth
    ‘chose to spend the day
    decorating it . . .

    these are some of your best photos

    and yes remeinded me of PAULA
    and you know what a high compliment that is

    Reply

  4. Gorgeous photos: I love the soaked skeleton with floating leaf.

    We’re under fire danger here in NH, too…which seems ironic given the floods of last October. That damn Nature. She’s a fickle Mother…

    Reply

  5. i could not love this more. especially the image and notion of the fierce raptor, eaten like prey – it twists thoughts.
    gorgeous images dave.

    Reply

  6. Ain’t none of us getting out of here alive.

    And that is beautiful.

    Reply

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