Tuesday, February 26, 2008

After the Rain

Foliage of a common and prolific local thistle, distinct white veining on green leaves, apparently milk thistle, Silybum marianum, or similar. This is a plant that is being researched for its medicinal benefits. Purple (and some white) flowers will appear late spring. Many illustrations of thistles only show the flowering head but both leaves and flower are essential for proper ID, there are over 200 spp here. Most thistles in Israel are purple or white, some yellow.

Jerusalem, Israel

Temp range today ~4-10 degrees C,
4.45 p.m. ~9 degrees C, humidity 77% and rising, wind fluctuating 3-12 kt
Mostly blue skies, some small to medium cumulus

In the gardens, house sparrows, white spectacled bulbuls, sunbird squeaky call in the cape honeysuckle. Also active: jackdaws, feral pigeons, hooded crows, great tits vocal in the pines, Eurasian jay foraging in cypresses, graceful warblers calling, black redstart on the bunker ruins rubble.

Two flowering plants not in the guide in the field by the saplings.. a small bright orange composite with dark centre and complex filamentous leaves and another low lying plant with small purple flowers, almost bell shaped, ~ 5 petals, with complex leaves.. must get photos tomorrow when better light.

p.s. forgot to mention brief sighting of long eared owl flying parallel to and just east of valley road two nights ago ~ 10 p.m.

SW England
Site does not have its own weather report so I used the BBC SW England weather webpage.
Temp" ~6 degrees C, winds westerly, mostly fine and sunny with occasional cloud & rain.
Female great spotted woodpecker several visits, probably same individual as yesterday. Plenty blue tits, great tits, greenfinches, chaffinches, housesparrows, occasional coal tit, robin and nuthatch. Male and female pheasants strolling around in the background through the afternoon. 2 grey squirrels visited the feeder. We're working on figuring out a way to get clear screenshots of this site, direct copying not an option. I tried photographing with e camera but not clear enough.

P.S. We found a way with a program called 'fraps' so hopefully I'll be posting Denbury farm images in future! I tested it when a badger came out to the badger feeding station some time after 11 p.m. and was satisfied with the image.

Meanwhile in Southern California:
Temps at the James reserve up a few degrees on yesterday and the sun is shining. Since 8 a.m. local time so far I've only seen purple finches, pygmy nuthatches and mountain tits, & oregon junco, mourning dove

No comments: