Wildlife Walk April 8th

The Alewife Reservation always has so much to offer. We walked from the stormwater wetlands over to blair pond. On this month’s walk we saw many of the spring birds migrating, including flycatchers, various sparrows, gold finches, and some lesser scaup. This was the first time that I have seen lesser scaup in the reservation. We also saw some of the migrating birds of prey like cooper’s hawk. The highlights of the walk were an osprey and a juvenile bald eagle flying over the stormwater wetlands.

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Deer At Alewife Blair Meadow

First Signs of Spring Way back deer eat new sumac shoots. 2/28
First Signs of Spring
Way back deer eat new sumac shoots. 2/28. Blair meadow at Cambridge quadrangle is mowed for Spring growth. Wetland and dry meadow plants are beginning to show. Biochar for permaculture plots is producing rich microbial soils for early April research experiments. Call 617 290-4864 for more information.

 

 

Wildlife Walk 12/16/2017

Today was a very cold day so we only went on the north side of little river. We saw hooded mergansers along the river, mallards, starlings, three blue herons, a red tailed hawk, and a pair of white tailed deer. Despite the cold there were many wildlife sightings. Overall a very nice walk.

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Wildlife Walk 11/12/2017

Birds of prey seemed to be the theme of this walk. At the oxbow lookout in the stormwater wetlands we saw a juvenile hawk either a red tail or broad winged.  In the storm water wetlands we observed two swans that carved out a small patch in the icy water. Later at little pond we saw hooded mergansers, cormorants, a belted kingfisher, and a bald eagle swooping over the water then landing in a tree. On the walk back looking in the trees we saw not one but two great horned owls. This is the first time in years that great horned owls or any owl has been seen at the alewife reservation. It was truly a great walk.

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Insects of Alewife

FAR is delighted to have these wonderful insect photos

because of your “extention tubes”. This is very exciting for us

 

 

Recently I acquired some extension tubes for my camera which allowed me to try my hand at some up-close insect photos. The insects of the Alewife Reservation have been my (sometimes) obliging subjects these past few months.

Great Golden Digger Wasp
Great Golden Digger Wasp
Jagged Ambush Bug, Phymata sp.
Jagged Ambush Bug, Phymata sp.

Coming from the birding world, this was a change of pace for me. There was a surprising amount of insect diversity to be seen and photographed here along the wildflower meadows on the north side of the reserve! I was very pleased to find this space saved for outdoor passive recreation as well as crucial habitat for the wildlife community here. And so close to public transportation!

Bicyrtes quadrifasciatus
Bicyrtes quadrifasciatus
Eastern Hornet Fly, a mimic
Eastern Hornet Fly, a mimic

I have been entering each of these records into iNaturalist.org to help science record the occurrence of these species in our area. I encourage everyone to submit their photos so we can flesh out the abundance of wildlife found at Alewife! There are currently 306 species totaled here (ranging from deer to bald eagles to dragonflies) with many more just waiting to be added.

Alewife on iNaturalist
Alewife on iNaturalist

So the next time you are walking the trail or boardwalk and stumble across a curious bug, bird, plant, or mushroom, snap a pic and upload it to iNaturalist. There, a community of fellow citizen scientists will help identify it and we can keep track of all the life dependent on this habitat.

Acanthocephala terminalis
Acanthocephala terminalis

Happy trails!      -Mike Mulqueen

Baby Black Crowned Night Heron

The black crowned night heron have been scarce this year in this area… but at least 2 were born at Alewife Reservation….here is a young baby just out of a nest…. and what s/he will look like as an adult….the BCNH come north to breed and will leave in mid fall…they have used this same nest for several years….bcnhbabe-fledgeyatesjuly2017

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