Friday, November 17, 2017

Nature Study Outing :: Fall at the Pond

The vernal pond is looking quite different this fall.  Usually it is completely dry by midsummer, but we had such heavy rains last winter/spring that the pond was overflowing most of the early part of this year. So it's just now receding to normal winter levels -- just as we're about to hit our rainy season. Check out the comparison:

last november

this november

I'm wondering how this is going to affect the life at the pond. By definition, vernal ponds completely dry up seasonally, which allows differnt kinds of creatures to bloom -- salamanders, newts, and so on -- without the threat of predators like fish. With this change, we'll have to see if those populations thrive this year.

The particular morning we were there was glorious. This spot really shines in the sunlight.

We found over a dozen boar wallows, which were fun to explore.  Lots of "I wonder" questions while we mucked about around their edges.

a wallow -- smooth sides, fairly shallow

evidence of rooting

boar prints

On this outing, we did a fun comparison of coyotebrush, which blooms in later summer through fall here. We found it in several different stages of bloom, which made a great comparison for our nature journals that evening!

gianna's in progress -- learning boar wallows are hard to draw! :)



  1. All so lovely!

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Beautiful! So neat to compare rainy/dry seasons and boar wallows, so interesting!