Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digital SLR and Interchangeable Lens Cameras > Pentax / Samsung dSLR, K Mount Mirrorless

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Mar 18, 2013, 7:44 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default It's Definitely Springtime in East Tennessee!

Have been down plenty of warm muddy trails here in East Tennessee in the past few weeks, enjoying the many signs of spring's return.

Buds packed tight full of leaves or flowers are beginning to swell, and to drop their winter "bud-coats." Here are a Buckeye tree leaf bud, a White Trillium flower bud, and a Trout Lily flower bud, each about ready to open.
Attached Images
   
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Mar 18, 2013, 7:50 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

One of my favorite early spring wildflowers is already past the peak of bloom. We've seen an abundance of Hepatica in recent weeks. The odd name (hepatic means liver) is because of the liver-like leaves. Our native hepaticas bloom in a range of colors - mostly white, but some pink or blue or striped combinations. Individual plants seem to bloom in the same color year after year, but I'm not sure if it's genetic, or more related to localized soil conditions...

Here are some buds and blooms of the pinker variety:
Attached Images
    
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 7:51 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

And one each of a blue-flowered and a white-flowered Hepatica plant.
Attached Images
  
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 7:55 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

Spring also means re-awakening insects. Here's a tiny Mayfly. Most species of mayflies hatch in May, but this variety is much earlier. After almost a year of life as a water-dwelling "bug," he emerges in early March as a flying insect. Mayflies mate, lay eggs, and are usually all dead by the end of their one day of adult life! (PS - trout fishermen call them...bait!)
Attached Images
 
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 7:57 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

Have no idea what species of beetle this is, but it sure did emerge well before any leaves! It seem safe to assume that these beetles don't taste good - the bright red color is usually a warning...
Attached Images
  
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 8:01 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

Most butterflies spend the winter inside their pupa case. But a few of our native butterfly species overwinter as adults. This Mourning Cloak probably spent the winter folded in a bark crevice, and came out on this warm March day to soak up some early spring sunshine.
Attached Images
 
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 8:04 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

Garter Snakes also sleep the winter away in crevices. And they also enjoy an early spring sunbath. This little fellow was not at all shy - seemed almost glad to pose for the persistent photographer! Actually he was probably just a bit lethargic - having just come out of his winter sleep, and still being rather cold.
Attached Images
    
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 8:11 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

I saved the cutest for last. We have a number of early spring amphibians in East Tennessee. Probably the most noticeable, but least seen, is the Chorus Frog. These tiny frogs gather at small pools and puddles, sometimes as early as February, to sing in VERY LOUD choruses. You can hear them everywhere in rural and suburban East TN, but you'll almost never see them. I've been trying for years to get a good shot at one while it was singing, and failed miserably. But this past weekend, thanks to my sharp-eyed son, I finally got a chance to watch one sing. Got thoroughly coated in mud to get these shots (and enjoyed the mud almost as much as the frog!!)
Attached Images
   
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 8:13 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
mole's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 8,522
Default

Spring is such an exciting time of new life here in the Tennessee hills. Am looking forward to more days out in the field this springtime! Sure do hope you enjoyed these views of some new spring lives, and that you will share your comments, critique and suggestions!
Attached Images
   
mole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Mar 18, 2013, 10:41 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: East Central Vermont
Posts: 1,890
Default

These are wonderful photos Mole! I couldn't pick a favorite if I tried. I know very little about close-up photography, but I must ask what lens you used, and even more important, did you use any external lighting source? If so, what? the flowers look like they were shot in natural light on a somewhat overcast day, while the moth looks like it was either in sunshine or with a flash. In any case, the results are extraordinary.

Your photos are also a source of inspiration. It was five degrees above zero this morning, and the weather forecasters are projecting more than a foot of snow tonight and tomorrow. Looks like spring won't arrive in my area any time soon!
mtnman is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:54 AM.