Bad Hair Day
My plans to walk with friends today was a total washout as the morning started with booming thunder and torrential rains. Once things had quieted down a bit, I zipped outside with a camera to see what I could find. And along came a male cardinal in the middle of a messy molt, not helped by the rain. He fluffed himself up and tried to raise what's left of his crest which all made him look just a bit silly. It also made a great photo op.
When the sun finally crept out, the monarchs who's spent the night and morning tucked into the trees came down to have a feed on the buddleia. So as I stood next to the bush, enjoying being surrounded by beautiful butterflies, I spotted ...her. A great big Chinese Mantid just sitting there right next to a big bunch of buddleia blooms. I raced back to the house, grabbed some gloves (to avoid an unfortunate nip) and hauled her over to a clump of goldenrod. where she will hopefully stay put. The goldenrod is attracting lots of bees and wasps (none of whom will overwinter) so she'll have food. And she is strategically located where I can easily see her from inside so I'll know if she's trying to make a move back to the butterfly bush. And, no, I can't bring myself to kill her even though she is a non-native species. I'll put a shot in Extra of her being relocated in my gloved hand. She wasn't happy and, yes, she tried to give me a nip.
I also got a rather nice close up of a white-breasted nuthatch, which you can see HERE. There was a nice little flight of warblers in the trees - no good pics but I was able to identify both Magnolia Warbler and Red-eyed Vireos in the flock. No hummers today.
Thank you for the love on my blip yesterday.
Dark with raspberries today. Ghirardelli does a nice job with this flavor combo.