autumn at jug bay: no child left inside

the Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary is a place that warrants a visit with every season.
this fall we compared and contrasted forest and wetland ecosystems.
we captured, examined and gently released several specimen like
spiders, slugs, worms and centipedes.
we marveled at all the types of fungi.
we halted ourselves just in time from squeezing berry-like insect galls
which held hundreds of baby arachnids.
we were fascinated by wooly aphids.

centipedes can give a serious bite.
don’t squeeze this berry, because it’s not a berry. hundreds of baby spiders wait inside.
beautiful natural patterns of wood burls.
funnel mushrooms look like nature’s pottery.
our most astonishing find of the day was a cross between cotton balls and snowflakes: wooly aphids.
once fungus forms at the foot of a tree, you can be certain that the tree is at the end of its lifecycle. what a beautiful way to end.
can you spot the snake?
leaf memory game
with claws like an osprey you’ll rarely miss your catch.
if you had teeth like a beaver, you’d want to grind them down on a tree too.

a walk in the woods is always a source of wonderment.
but a walk in the woods with other curious friends
and our ebullient and sage guide, Jen,
was a phenomenal way to begin the fall
and appreciate the gifts each season.

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