A couple of squirrels

According to The Conversation 2019 is a “mast” year for oaks.

If you have oak trees in your neighborhood, perhaps you’ve noticed that some years the ground is carpeted with their acorns, and some years there are hardly any. Biologists call this pattern, in which all the oak trees for miles around make either lots of acorns or almost none, “masting.”

In New England, naturalists have declared this fall a mast year for oaks: All the trees are making tons of acorns all at the same time.

We certainly have hundreds, if not thousands of acorns on the ground.

And with the acorns come squirrels.

First picture taken with a Canon EOS 5d and EF 28-105mm f3.5-4.5 USM; second with a Panasonic Lumix GF-1 and Lumix G Vario 45-150mm f4.0-5.6.

Fall foliage around the lake

Taken from a few walks with our dog, Harley around the lake. Above a view looking North from Roaring Brook Lane – less than five minutes walk from our lake house.


A view from our house.


View to the South from our dock.


Lake View from North Beach looking south.


Leaf on a rock.


Tree on Lake Shore Road.

Taken with a Canon EOS 5d and EF 28-105mm f3.5-4.5 USM.

A cricket

Ever since we moved to our house in Briarcliff Manor from time to time we see one of these in the lowermost level of the house. They seem to live in the crawl space but every once in a while one ventures out. I managed to get a closer look at this one and I’ve concluded that it’s a camel cricket – not originally native to the US. It originated in Asia. They don’t bite, don’t fly, don’t carry disease and, most importantly, don’t make noise like normal crickets. Our house must be their entire universe and I don’t have the heart to kill them. But then I’ve always liked bugs and this one, as bugs go, is rather cute.

Taken with a Sony RX-100 M3.

Surprise encounter with a snapping turtle

As we were walking up from North Beach our dog, Harley suddenly gave a startled yelp and leaped backwards. When I looked down this is what I saw, the only difference being that its mouth was open and it was spitting: snapping turtle, about two feet long. Luckily Harley showed no signs of injury, although that looks suspiciously like Harley hair in the turtle’s mouth..Must have been a close thing.


Broader view of the monster.

Taken with a Canon EOS 5d and EF 28-105mm f3.5-4.5 USM.