Friday, February 27, 2009

At The Pond...Again!

First of all I want to alert you all of something really crappy here is the link.
After you've read the article click here to see what brands are the best and worst.

It really stinks that toilet paper is made from old growth and eucalyptus, butt we can wipe this problem together. All puns asside, I think we should all start using recycled toilet paper and tell our friends about this too.

Do you remember a little less than one year ago the entry at the pond? Recently we went back to the same pond, and saw the critters below. We were a little too early in the season to see lots of frogs, but in a couple of weeks or so we'll go back there for the frog mating season. The picture below is of a young rough skinned newt who was about 3 inches long.
Taricha granulosa

A really cool millipede, one of the biggest we've seen.

Here is an adult newt, who was over 4 inches long and more bulky than the young newt.

sunset at the pond. Twice we have seen a Great blue Heron there(probably eating frogs).

This banana slug was in our driveway, and Mom and I moved him. Did you know the banana slug is the official mascot at UC Santa Cruz?

A colony of ants

Awhile ago we went to an area of Maggie colloquially called the Fairyland. There are 2 places on Maggie called fairylands. They're called that because there's something magical about them.

This fallen tree forms an arch that leads into the OtherworldMany fairies live in, under, and on top of this tree.

Dad took this picture.
Moss growing in the micro-cave underneath the waterfall.

weird water plants under the waterfall
This bathtub is sitting in the middle of the Fairy Land and no one knows why. It may have some piping going into the ground.
the reflection in the tub

A fungus that looks like a brain!

The Fairyland
Home of fairies
If you believe

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Cathedral

The Cathedral is one of the coolest places on Maggie. Unfortunately, it hasn't been on the blog much other than the pictures of Dad amongst the trees, and the calypso orchid in the entry Our Lives in Oregon, and the salamander in the first entry My Pictures. It's where the biggest trees [other than the big madrone] are. In the above picture Dad is standing in front of a tree that very likely is old growth. It is 13 feet 7 inches around. It has proven near impossible to find out how big a Douglas Fir has to be to be old growth, but if any of you has any information on the subject please leave a comment.
Here is a photo of the tree in context. The other trees are about 5 feet around

Me in front of an average size Cathedral tree which was 9 feet 2 inches around

Grampa Charlie's jeep-style car also known as the Maggiemobile [if your reading this Grampa thanks for letting us use your car it's come in handy] in front of The Cathedral
A new type of centipede which we saw in front of The Cathedral.
it's big Birtha!

So the biggest madrone in Oregon, probably an endangered species sighting, and a likely old growth tree, there are a lot of cool things on Maggie!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

One Whole Year on Maggie

Sunday, February 3, 2008 one year ago I was living at my grandma's house in Cottage Grove. There was an essay contest in National Geographic Kids magazine. The essay had to be about nature and my interactions with it[some nature photography to go with it was a bonus]. The prize was a photo expedition to the Australian outback and a new camera. So me and Dad went to Maggie to take some pictures [of coarse I didn't win] but I took my first nature pictures. Dad uploaded them onto the computer and they were better than I expected. Dad said I might have an eye for photography. We created a blog to put them on and the result was my first entry "My Pictures" then we posted the essay "Alex's Essay" [we werent very creative with names back then]. The pictures had no captions, the essay had no pictures and we didn't know how to do a lot of things we can now but was the beginning of something great. Ever since we have updated it about every week. For the last year. You my readers have followed me on a journey through the wilderness of Maggie we have trekked through things wondrous, happy, and macabre. I look forward to another amazing year on Maggie.

We visited the grave of Martha Maupin the founder of the farm. She is buried in a very small cemetery inside our neighbors land which can be accessed via dirt roads from Maggie. She has the biggest and probably the nicest tomb stone there. Here is a link to a picture in Kellogg, Oregon on GoogleMaps. The graveyard is to the right on the winding dirt road on the hillside just to the right of the bright white gravel pit.

This is the grave of Martha's son Cap. Maupin the second owner of the ranch and uncle of my great grandpa Gene who bought it from him. about one third of the graves are my ancestors'.
This grave of someone not related to me [to my knowlege] is from 1885. It looks home made carved from a block of obsidian.

A worm interacting with beetles

A waterfall

This tree down by the river has probably been assailed by red breasted sapsucker[s].

It frosted on Maggie

A frosted spider web

These are the same semi-mummified deer that was in the early entry "morgue"
As you can see they have decayed somewhat
This was the baby

My home and friend
Another year, nay many years await