Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Around and About

Thought we'd share some little snippets of things we see here or there.

Not too much else going on right now.  Weather has been wonderful lately (still an unexpected  touch of cool) and the water at the ocean is starting to warm up a bit.  YEAH!

Back in January Nicole took a walk to find the nesting Eagles she had heard were close by.  Of course, she saw many other things.

This Bella Moth was a bit camera shy.  Didn't get a shot of its beautiful pink undercoat.

                      The Mallows had bloomed and were enjoying the sun

                                       and the attention of the local buzzers.

The weeds were a buzz and things were hopping.

      Pretty sure this is an American Bird Grasshopper.

                   This little one was only thirty or forty grains of sand long.

It did not feel like a January day that is for sure.  Soon, the star of the show was spotted.

     Adult keeping watch.  Baby is in there somewhere but didn't make an appearance.

                                       Just look at the size of that nest!

                    Majesty in our back yard.

On the walk out, a few other critters were spotted.

  This Daggerwing Butterfly's wings had seen better days.  Still, it flittered along happily.

         This Barred Yellow Sulphur Butterfly was not in the mood to show its colors.

  Nicole was super excited to see this Tersa Sphinx Moth.

                    In a fine end to the walk these three Wood Storks flew over.

More recently, a walk around our complex revealed a few more blooms and critter'ish things.

                                   Callistemon citrinus - Bottle Brush Tree

    Milletia pinnata - You may have noticed the distinct pea family shape of the flower.






                  This Banyan Tree hides a friend.

He greets us as we enter and exit the back path to our property.

Speaking of the back path on and off of our property, it is the reason Nicole took this walk in the first place.  The other day she had noticed that a bleeding heart unlike any she had seen was blooming.  It was time to document it.

As luck would have it, everything BUT this Tropical Bleeding Heart Vine was in good light.

Nonetheless, a few shots of these pretty flowers were obtained.

Growing up in Florida Nicole had a lot of lizard friends.  Back in the day, they were all the size of this guy.  She would catch them and put them on her thumb and they would fall asleep to the pulse of her heartbeat.

The lizards of todays Florida, however, are a completely different story.  These new residents would barely fit on her whole arm.

2015-08-22 Florida, PBG - Cuban Knight Anole Lizard (10)
We've spotted the Cuban Knight Anole down at her folk's place.

Up in Stuart, we are seeing a whole different line of non-native large lizard.

african agama
                   The African Redheaded Agama has been thriving in this area.

These larger lizards can be a bit more aggressive than their smaller counterparts.  Usually as we motor along on our bikes the small lizards scatter like leaves in the wind.  These larger ones though are not so easily deterred.  One day, on her way to work, Nicole was watching the smaller lizards scatter when up ahead a larger one turned to face her.  Of course now that he has seen me he will run like the others, she thought.  Oh, he ran alright.  Straight at her!  And he wasn't stopping.  So, just before sudden death, Nicole slammed on her brakes and he darted off to one side.  As she rode on, Nicole chuckled at the thought... "I just played chicken with a lizard!"

         Continuing on the walk... new (to us) mushrooms were spotted on property.



                                 Otherwise called Hairy Funnel Mushroom

                                     An unexpected and pretty cool find.

                                                Spotted these pretties.

They may be in the Mexican Coral Vine family although that is not confirmed at this time.

               If they were then that would make them a Cat II invasive in Florida.

                                        For now, we'll just call it pretty.

Here's some more pretty things...

                                                  Monarch Butterfly

                                        Iridescence on a Mourning Dove

                                                       Cone Flowers

                   A taste of the pretty colors on the Orchard Weaver Spider.

           These were probably pretty when they were in bloom.  Just missed them.

                                        Pretty is a matter of perspective.

                         This walk also ended with an American Woodstork flyover.

                                                Until we meet again...

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Fall is Back! Let's take Flight.

Well, we were a little off with the warmer weather statement.  It seems we had forgotten that it always chills off again before Easter.  So, we are back to cool mornings and evenings and today even the afternoon is pleasant enough to open all of the windows and put a chill in the condo.

Thus, in honor of the return of fall we will go back in time to share with you something that we experienced just a few weeks after moving to Stuart.

That thing is the...


I know what you all are thinking.  But you two don't really "DO" things.  And, you are right.  We don't.  Not in the sense that others do, anyway. 

You see... the airport is only a couple of miles from our condo.  And the "show" therefore wound up being right in front of our condo.  Sometimes it even flew right over our heads!

So, we were fortunate enough to watch the whole event from the comfort of our front stoop. 

Nicole grew up with lots of talk of planes and going to plenty of airshows since her father worked for Pratt & Whitney, one of the sponsors of this show.  Needless to say there was some perma-grin going on throughout on her part.

Being so close to the show we experienced a few extra days of practice flights, arrivals and departures.  The real kick off though is the night flight on Friday evening just after sunset.  It is quite something to watch even if our camera wasn't able to capture it well.

Night Lights - Glider Bob Carlton Jet Powered (2)
                 The highlight was when Bob Carlton lit up his jet powered glider.

                  The next two days were started off with the Navy Leap Frogs.

                             Here comes the C130 and it's two tiny escorts!

Navy Leap Frogs (1)

Navy Leap Frogs (3)

Navy Leap Frogs (12)

And then there were the planes...

AT6 Texan Bill Leff (5)
                                            Bill Leff and his AT-6 Texan

AT6 Texan Bill Leff (12)

Bi-Plane Red White Striped 1942 army air corp Gary Rower vintage Stearman (23)
                              Gary Rower and his 1942 Army Air Corp Stearman

Bi-Plane Red White Striped 1942 army air corp Gary Rower vintage Stearman (24)

Bi-Plane Red White Striped 1942 army air corp Gary Rower vintage Stearman (26)

Bi-Plane Small Stunt (3)                        Pretty sure this is Patty Wagstaff in one of her bi-planes

Douglas C47 Skytrain Tico Belle (1)
                                 The beautiful Douglas C-47 Skytrain Tico Belle

F16 (2)
                            It was not easy to capture a non-blurred shot of the F-16

F-18 (3)
                                        or the F-18 despite their multiple passes.

Glider Bob Carlton Jet Powered (3)

Helicopter (2)
                                                 Vintage Bell Huey Helicopter

Helicopter (3)
                                                   another 'copter sighting

Mig-17 Randy Ball (12)
Watching Randy Ball in his Russian MiG-17 was quite a thrill.  Photographing him was a challenge even greater than the F-16 & F-18. 

Mig-17 Randy Ball (15)
              Here he is getting ready to buzz the roof off the building across from ours.

Stunt Plane Red White Blue Stripe   John Black Super Decatlon (8)
                            Stunts and Smoke Trails were the name of the game...

Stunt Plane Red White Blue Stripe   John Black Super Decatlon (12)
                                     for John Black and his Super Decathlon

Stunt Plane Skip Stewart Prometheus
     Skip Stewart and Prometheus did some decorating.

Stunt Plane Small (4)
                      The stunts the small planes performed were impressive.

Stunt Planes Matt Younkin Beech 18 (8)
            Matt Younkin and his Beech 18 must not have gotten word that a plane

Stunt Planes Matt Younkin Beech 18 (16)
                                           like this is not supposed to do

Stunt Planes Matt Younkin Beech 18 (1)
                                                         stunts like this!


Last up are the T's.

T6 (2)
                                                           The six.

T28 (4)
                                              And, the twenty eights.

Their path repeatedly brought them directly over our condo numerous times over the course of the three day event.  They are spectacular to see and hear.

T28 (5)

T28 (47)

              Oh, no.  It's 5:15 already.  We've got to go.  Hope you enjoyed the show!