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User / annkelliott
Anne Elliott / 22,810 items

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Thursday, 6 October 2022: temperature at 8:30 am is 2°C (windchill -1°C!). Sunrise is at 7:44 am and sunset is at 7:03 pm. Another sunny day.

Again, a few more odds and ends. I will add the description that I wrote under previously posted images taken on the same days, as it means less use of my right arm, which has damage to the shoulder rotator cuff, apparently. Have to make an appointment for an ultrasound to check how much damage was done. Had a doctor's appointment a few mornings ago as a follow-up to my trip and fall accident on 12 September. My broken nose seems to be healing well, but I have a huge, really painful hematoma on the right side of my chest, which can take months to heal. Holy smokes, I had to take a taxi as I am not driving yet, which cost $102 for the round trip!

"This photo was taken on 15 June 2016, when I went for a short drive SW of the city. I really do need to go to a few different areas, to see different bird species, but my most recent drives have been mainly to check on three different pairs of Mountain Bluebirds, and to see at least one of the usual Wilson's Snipes. On this trip, I saw all the usual things, knowing that before too long, all of them will have left on their long, long journeys.

"These plump, long-billed birds are among the most widespread shorebirds in North America. They can be tough to see thanks to their cryptic brown and buff coloration and secretive nature. But in summer they often stand on fence posts or take to the sky with a fast, zigzagging flight and an unusual “winnowing” sound made with the tail." From AllAboutBirds.

www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/wilsons_snipe/id

"Wilson's Snipe (Gallinago delicata) is a small, stocky shorebird. This species was considered to be a subspecies of the Common Snipe (G. gallinago) until 2003 when it was given its own species status. Wilson's Snipe differs from the latter species in having a narrower white trailing edge to the wings, and eight pairs of tail feathers instead of the typical seven of the Common Snipe. Its common name commemorates the American ornithologist Alexander Wilson." From Wikipedia.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilson's_snipe

According to Fisher and Acorn's book, "Birds of Alberta", "the common Snipe is both secretive and well camouflaged, so few people notice it until it flushes suddenly from a nearby grassy tussock. As soon as the Snipe takes to the air, it performs a series of quick zigzags - an evasive maneuver designed to confuse predators. Because of this habit, Snipes were among the most difficult birds to shoot (in the days when shorebirds were hunted for sport), and skilled sportsmen were known as "snipers" - a term later adopted by the military."

youtu.be/Z16CUdX2g5Q

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Had to miss the fungi season this year, sigh.

A few more odds and ends. I will add the description that I wrote under previously posted images taken on the same days, as it means less use of my right arm, which has damage to the shoulder rotator cuff, apparently. Have to make an appointment for an ultrasound to check how much damage was done. Had a doctor's appointment a few mornings ago as a follow-up to my trip and fall accident on 12 September. My broken nose seems to be healing well, but I have a huge, really painful hematoma on the right side of my chest, which can take months to heal. Holy smokes, I had to take a taxi as I am not driving yet, which cost $102 for the round trip! For the first time since my accident, I drove my car down the road to a nearby small food store - kind of urgent. Did not feel good, though.

"Note: any IDs given are always tentative, even when we have been provided with an ID. Fungi are not easy to identify and caution must always be taken if a person picks mushrooms for eating! Unless you are a trained specialist, never eat wild mushrooms.

How many fungus species are there? It depends on what you read. For example, the two comments below are extremely different!

"Currently, there are over 10,000 known types of mushrooms. That may seem like a large number, but mycologists suspect that this is only a fraction of what's out there! We can put these various species in one of 4 categories: saprotrophic, mycorrhizal, parasitic, and endophytic." From link below.

www.mushroom-appreciation.com/types-of-mushrooms.html

"Even scientists don’t currently agree on how many fungi there might be but only about 120,000 of them have been described so far." From link below.

www.lanl.gov/museum/news/newsletter/2018/01/fungi.php

Yesterday morning, 30 August 2019, I went with a small group of friends to search for fungi at West Bragg Creek, west of Calgary. I had been hoping for a bright, sunny day that would allow enough light into the forest for photography. However, that was not the case, but at least we didn't have rain, unlike today, overcast and raining. Crummy weather for a long weekend. I'm wearing a sweater, have turned on the heating, and am listening to the falling rain. Is this really still summer? In fact, did we actually have a summer? High temperature today was 14C.

What we did have was the joy of finding enough fungi to keep us happy. We sure had to work hard to see them, with even more bush-whacking than usual. The forest floor is treacherous there, with such a dense blanket of soft moss, that you never knew when you were going to suddenly sink. In contrast, there are a lot of fallen trees and broken branches to trip you. Unfortunately, we did have one casualty that resulted in blood, and no doubt a few bruises today. I find that every single step you take needs to be done with great caution - and with good friends who help when necessary! We got a real workout and I definitely feel painful today.

When I arrived at the parking lot first thing, a huge, lit sign said "Warning - bears in the area"! Not the first time that has happened, and I know I would never go exploring on my own. As it was, the only animals we saw were Maggie and Ben, our leader's Beagles."

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A few more odds and ends. I will add the description that I wrote under previously posted images taken on the same days, as it means less use of my right arm, which has damage to the shoulder rotator cuff, apparently. Have to make an appointment for an ultrasound to check how much damage was done. Had a doctor's appointment a few mornings ago as a follow-up to my trip and fall accident on 12 September. My broken nose seems to be healing well, but I have a huge, really painful hematoma on the right side of my chest, which can take months to heal. Holy smokes, I had to take a taxi as I am not driving yet, which cost $102 for the round trip! For the first time since my accident on 12 September, I drove my car down the road to a nearby small food store - kind of urgent. Did not feel good, though. The young woman staff worker collected the things on my list for me and helped carry them out to my car, which I appreciated.

"The spot where I was standing had a picnic table. This Columbian Ground Squirrel was obviously used to people throwing a bit of food, but it was out of luck with me, because I don't feed any wildlife.

This afternoon, 25 July 2022, I am quickly posting five more photos taken on 20 July 2022. Another drive to Kananaskis, mainly to get out of my house which is so hot inside. Slow to post at the moment, as my infected tooth is causing great pain over the left side of my face and neck. Same thing happened with the same tooth - which needs a root canal - last year. Had an appointment at a different clinic a few evenings ago, as my own doctor is on vacation, and have been on antibiotics since then. The infection has caused my temperature to go up and my blood pressure to soar, so will be so thankful when the antibiotics start working. The hot weather is not helping! Unfortunately, not feeling well enough at the moment to be able to go for a drive in my car, in its air-conditioning.

The hot days continue, though there is no longer an Alert in place. On 20 July, it was just too hot and stuffy indoors, so, yet again, I climbed into my car and off I went. Same direction as the previous drive, on 14 July - south-west to Kananaskis. Total mileage was 388 km and I was out for 10 hours. No bears this time, but I was glad to see one little American Pika just when I was ready to give up. Most of my shots will end up being deleted, but finally the tiny Rock Rabbit stopped for two or three seconds, giving me a chance to get one OK shot. Not sure, but its left eye looks like there might be something wrong with it.

Several Bighorn Sheep were on the road, along with quite a lot of vehicles. The poor Sheep are still wearing quite a lot of their shaggy winter coat. No doubt they will be relieved when their summer coats are finally revealed, and they will certainly look much better.

The usual scenic shots had to be taken, of course. This time, I drove as far as Mt. Engadine Lodge before turning around. I was hoping to find a certain pond that I had been to before, but I guess I should have looked on a map at home before my drive. I think the pond must be on the main highway through Kananaskis. Maybe next time."

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A few more odds and ends. I will add the description that I wrote under previously posted images taken on the same days, as it means less use of my right arm, which has damage to the shoulder rotator cuff, apparently. Have to make an appointment for an ultrasound to check how much damage was done. Had a doctor's appointment a few mornings ago as a follow-up to my trip and fall accident on 12 September. My broken nose seems to be healing well, but I have a huge, really painful hematoma on the right side of my chest, which can take months to heal. Holy smokes, I had to take a taxi as I am not driving yet, which cost $102 for the round trip! For the first time since my accident on 12 September, I drove my car down the road to a nearby small food store - kind of urgent. Did not feel good, though. The young woman staff worker collected the things on my list for me and helped carry them out to my car, which I appreciated.

"With rain in the forecast for a few days, I decided to get out for a few hours yesterday, 22 August 2022. My first stop was at the Saskatoon Farm to buy some very fresh vegetables, and some fruit from BC. While there, I enjoyed a late breakfast to keep me going till I got home.

From the Farm, I drove a bit further south and called in at Frank Lake. I so rarely go to this location, but before too long, the gate will be closed and I will have to wait till next year. While there, I bumped into a fellow birder/photographer, who gave me a heads-up about seeing a juvenile Black-crowned Night-heron and also the Great Egret that many people have been seeing. No sign of the Egret, but I love juvenile Black-crowned Night-herons with their beautiful brown and white patterns.

Stopping briefly at the ponds near Frank Lake, I was saddened to see that they had both dried up, thanks to our very hot weather for so long and mostly lack of rain, though it did rain part of yesterday and this morning. So thankful. Frank Lake's water level had also gone down.

The American White Pelicans gave a spectacular display with a feeding frenzy. They all gathered together in a very long line, closely packed. A couple of reports from the same day mentioned seeing about 300 of these large, beautiful birds, which sounds about right to me. The video posted here shows only a few of them.

One of the things I was also glad to see on this visit was the Maximillan Sunflower. Not native to here, but so beautiful. Not many of them, so they were not being invasive. This is the only place I have ever seen them.

On the way home, I drove a few back roads and found a couple of hawks - a Red-tailed Hawk and a Swainson's. Can never have too many hawks!"

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A few more odds and ends. I will add the description that I wrote under previously posted images taken on the same days, as it means less use of my right arm, which has damage to the shoulder rotator cuff, apparently. Have to make an appointment for an ultrasound to check how much damage was done. Had a doctor's appointment a few mornings ago as a follow-up to my trip and fall accident on 12 September. My broken nose seems to be healing well, but I have a huge, really painful hematoma on the right side of my chest, which can take months to heal. Holy smokes, I had to take a taxi as I am not driving yet, which cost $102 for the round trip! For the first time since my accident on 12 September, I drove my car down the road to a nearby small food store - kind of urgent. Did not feel good, though. The young woman staff worker collected the things on my list for me and helped carry them out to my car, which I appreciated.

"Early evening, 21 August 2022 - it's RAINING! At long, long last!!! The temperature has also fallen to 19C.

From The Weather Network:
"Even with La Niña doing its best to keep 2022 from setting new records for global heat, last month still ranked among the hottest months of the past 143 years.

July 2022 was one of the hottest months ever recorded on Earth according to the world’s major climate monitoring agencies. Based on NASA’s records, it was tied with 2020 for the 3rd warmest July, behind 2019 and 2021."

Having problems with the Internet yesterday and today. No Internet or land phone line for a lot of the time - and then they come on for a short while. Also, Flickr won't save comments I write on someone's photo.

A few more photos from another long day, making the most of my car's air-conditioning. We are under a Heat Warning today, 20 August 2022. Our temperature is 23C (feels like 25C) at 2:00 pm. Sunrise was at 6:30 am and sunset will be at 8:47 pm. Forecast is for rain, but we never seem to get it when it is forecast! We desperately need RAIN. Our temperatures are supposed to be a few degrees cooler this coming week.

The day before yesterday, 17 August 2022, I had another fairly long day, 305 km in total. Once again, I travelled S and then SE of Calgary, first calling in at the Saskatoon Farm for breakfast and to buy some fresh fruit and vegetables. Felt good to know that the new potatoes that I had for supper had been in the ground earlier in the day. Same with the broccoli, that was picked before I arrived at the Farm. The fresh fruit, such as peaches and nectarines, comes from BC (British Columbia).

From the Farm, I drove a familiar route southward, seeing a number of hawks - maybe 10 or so during the whole day. Seeing two Ferruginous Hawks was a treat, as always, even though they were far away. Such a lack of smaller birds - it was strange not seeing Vesper Sparrows and Savannah Sparrows on lots of fence posts. Instead, I saw a number of Great Blue Herons, which made a welcome change."


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