Red Eft on Walkabout in the Scotia Barrens

Since I got such a great walk out of it last time, I had my husband (who was on his way to town to get groceries and gas) drop me off at the other end of Stormstown again, and I walked home through the Scotia Barrens. The humidity was about 100%, with rain expected, the corridor is green, the fungi are superb and colorful and frequent, and the mosquitoes are merciless!

I was trying to document all of the cool fungi, and I stopped along the path to photograph an extraordinarily large piece of orange punk, when I noticed this orange fellow nearby. It is a red eft, which is the terrestrial juvenile form of the eastern newt (Notophthalmus viridescens).

The red eft grows a pair of lungs, steps out of the pond, and goes on walkabout for several years, before transforming into the regular greenish-brown adult (aquatic) form of the newt. So this was a newt out on walkabout, a youngster seeing the world for a few years, before picking a pond and settling down.

The newt seemed rather phlegmatic on this humid and drippy day, and it didn't move fast or far. But as I took about two dozen photos, it strolled over to the orange punk, and at the last minute, it zipped right under! Orange newt in an orange house! Perfectamundo!

The soundtrack song for this red eft who is out on walkabout seeing the world is this one: Johnny Cash and U2, with The Wanderer. It is a fabulous collaboration between the Man in Black and U2; Bono wrote it, but Bono and the Edge only sing BACKUP to Johnny in this version, which is awesome. Johnny Cash. His voice lifts me up. And breaks my heart. <3

Walk on, red eft. Walk on!

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