Category Archives: Nature

Travel Theme: Broken

By Vladimir Brezina

Nature Morte…

Broken shell 1
Broken shell 2
Broken shell 3
Broken shell 4

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Broken.

Travel Theme: Bountiful

By Vladimir Brezina

Spiderwebs glitter in the sun
Suspicious purple
Bacchanal of fruits and colors

Fall 2013 in NYC’s Central Park. A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Bountiful. Another “Bountiful” contribution is here.

The Park Is Still Green, but if You Look Closely…

By Vladimir Brezina

… Fall is definitely on its way.

(Click on any photo to start slideshow. In Manhattan’s Central Park, September 27, 2014.)

Travel Theme: Inviting

By Vladimir Brezina

Landed on Sandy HookPaddling out from Manhattan for the day, we often find ourselves heading south to Sandy Hook, NJ. Our favorite spot to land there, about half-way down the bay side, is a picturesque little “island” of wooded high ground that rather improbably rises above the otherwise flat Sandy Hook View over the salt marshlandscape. (Indeed, it is man-made, being the overgrown concrete ruins of an early 20th-century military installation, Battery Arrowsmith.) Separating the “island” from the “mainland” of Sandy Hook is a salt marsh.

Whenever we land at the “island”, we always take a few minutes to walk round to the back, to the edge of the salt marsh.  We go there to observe a mass display of invitation.

The marsh is fringed by a zone of bare, or sometimes sparsely overgrown, ground. Looking down closely, we see that the ground is studded with holes, large and small.

Field of holes

At first, standing there, we see nothing remarkable.

But within a minute or two, we glimpse, here and there, a furtive movement. Then more and more, and soon there is movement all around—movement of a curiously stereotyped sort.

Each hole is occupied by a fiddler crab.

Two fiddler crabs
Fiddler crab emerging

There are both male and female crabs. They are easy to distinguish—the males have one greatly enlarged claw. And they use this claw in a characteristic courtship display. They stand next to their holes and repeatedly raise their large claws, inviting the females to enter.

It is quite a sight to see the whole area come alive with hundreds of crabs all raising their claws simultaneously in their inviting gesture…

(A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Inviting.)

Happy Fall!

By Vladimir Brezina

Wild flowers along the riverbank (photo by Johna)The Fall Equinox occurs this evening. So, although we very much regret, especially this year, Summer’s passing—Happy Fall, everyone! (Well, everyone in the northern hemisphere… for the others, Happy Spring!)

Fall colors by kayak

Weekly Photo Challenge: Endurance, Take Two

By Vladimir Brezina

The only way to build up endurance is to endure…

Icy day at the Reservoir
Endurance 1
Endurance 2
Endurance 3

In response to this week’s Photo Challenge, Endurance. The first response was here.

New England On the Edge of Fall

By Johna Till Johnson

Fall is arriving early this year.

Last weekend I was up in coastal Connecticut helping my mother settle into a new apartment. The retirement community where she lives is lovely, surrounded by hills, trees, and not-too-manicured fields of wildflowers. And on this mid-September day, with still more than a week to go before autumn officially starts… the trees are turning.

Fortunately I had several errands that involved walking around the community in the golden afternoon sunshine. I took as many photos as I could to capture the essence of the day: Brilliant blue skies, sun-dappled trees, wildflowers dancing in the light breeze.

Nobody knows what the winter will bring. But if autumn continues the way it’s begun… it will be beautiful!

(click on any photo to start slideshow)