nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Archive for the ‘wild life’ Category

morning bird chorus – ephemera

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When I was a child, one of the things I prized was my collection of ‘bird cards’. These were an advertising give-away from ‘Cow Brand Baking Soda’ (Church and Dwight Limited, Montreal, Canada).

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I would spend hours looking at these, putting them in order of the ones I liked best, thinking about the birds depicted. The Meadowlark was a local bird I had seen many times and his call was as familiar to me as breathing – he always made it to the top of the pile! Today the winner would be the Cedar Waxwing who sits in the tops of the pines at our cabin, or the Goldfinch who spends all winter at our feeders!

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Today I still have two packs of these cards. They are in sets of 16 in a paper envelope. The card sets are called ‘Useful Birds of America’ and the front of each card shows an image of a bird by artist Louis Agassiz Fuertes (1874-1927), an American ornithologist and artist. On the back, there is a tip on how to use ‘Cow Brand Baking Soda’, the bird’s common name, its scientific name and a charming paragraph about its appearance and habits. The card concludes with a short message still relevant today:

For the good of all, do not destroy the birds 

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Copyright 2016 Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

August 3, 2016 at 8:22 am

Who ate the sunflower seeds???

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First week of spring! Cold and snowy!

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I woke this morning to find my newly-filled sunflower seed feeders all empty. Three pine siskins and a goldfinch were clinging to the finch seed feeder but the other birds are out of seed. A look at the yard will tell you who was slurping up the sunflower seeds in the night!

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Copyright Jane Tims 2016

Written by jane tims

March 22, 2016 at 9:32 am

in the shelter of the covered bridge – drawings

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As I complete my manuscript of poems ‘in the shelter of the covered bridge’, I am also working on the drawings to accompany the text. I have made a list of the visuals presented in the poems, so I have a specific idea of what drawings I need. Many are completed since I have a large portfolio of bird drawings, for example …

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Others are still to be done. This morning I completed a rather delicate drawing of the two kinds of roses growing beside the Darlings Island Covered Bridge and captured in my poem ‘tangle’.

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I love to draw. For me, it is like watching a movie as I see my hand lay pencil marks on paper. It is not a calm activity. Perhaps because my hand and arm are moving, I get quite agitated when I draw and I imagine my blood pressure rising as the work progresses.

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In order to have a body of work to choose from for the final manuscript, I aim to have more than forty drawings. I have completed nineteen. Lots to do !

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Copyright  Jane Tims 2016

Written by jane tims

February 1, 2016 at 7:23 am

something orange

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I love the colour orange. It must be so – it is one of the most used ‘tag’ words in my blog postings.

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This is a rather whimsical ‘side-view’ watercolour of an orange mushroom I saw recently in our cottage woods. I published the ‘top-view’ in an earlier post.

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November 22, 2015 ‘side-view of an orange mushroom’ Jane Tims

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November 5, 2015 'woodland floor' Jane Tims

November 5, 2015 ‘woodland floor’ Jane Tims

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Copyright 2105 Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

December 2, 2015 at 7:05 am

colour on the woodland floor

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Today, we went for a walk along the trails at our camp. My favorite path runs along the boundary, next to our zig-zag cedar fence and among young white pine, grey birch, red maple and balsam fir.

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The weather has been very damp, so I expected to find fungi along the way. But I was surprised to see a beautiful patch of bright orange toadstools, each with a distinct orange-red center. They stood out among the red-brown leaves and green mosses.

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I am not good at the identification of fungi, but I think this is Caesar’s mushroom (Amanita caesarea). It is easily confused with the poisonous Amanita muscaria, so no one should use my painting as an identification guide. Just a celebration of orange and red on a fall day.

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November 5, 2015 'woodland floor' Jane Tims

November 5, 2015 ‘woodland floor’ Jane Tims

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Copyright Jane Tims 2015

Written by jane tims

November 5, 2015 at 5:01 pm

art auction – new painting

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September 17, 2015 ‘Outside-In #3 – Far from the Sea’ Jane Tims

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I have submitted another painting to Isaac’s Way Restaurant, for their 25th Art Auction and Sale.  This event will run from September 27, 2015 to late January, 2016.  The proceeds from the auction go to sponsor kids-in-need. My latest painting is titled ‘Outside-In #3 – Far from the Sea’.

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The painting is the third in a series of still life paintings I have done about the many elements of nature we bring into our homes.  This includes items collected on walks, motifs on fabrics and metals, small statuary and so on.  My first painting in the series was ‘Outside-In’, a Chinese dragon hiding behind a glass cloche. The second painting was ‘Outside-In #2’ , a still life of a potpourri jar.

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Jane Tims 'outside-in' February 12, 2015

February 12, 2015 ‘Outside-In’ Jane Tims

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Jane Tims 'Outside-In No 1' May 2015

May 2015 ‘Outside-In #2’ Jane Tims

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For the new painting, I used Chromium Oxide Green, Burnt Umber, Titanium White, Phthalo Blue, Cadmium Yellow, Quinacridone Magenta and Cadmium Red.

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If you are in the Fredericton area, please drop in to Isaac’s Way. Their food is delicious and over fifty artists have their paintings on display. Bid and you could take home a piece of original art!

http://isaacsway.ca/art/

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Copyright  Jane Tims  2015

 

Written by jane tims

September 18, 2015 at 7:52 am

stinkhorns – what’s not to love?

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This morning I was trimming the vines at our front door and resting occasionally in my yellow lawn chair. Every time I sat down, I smelled a very disgusting smell. It didn’t take me long to find the source. Something I have never seen before – an Elegant Stinkhorn fungus (Mutinus elegans).

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under the yellow chair is a pink stinkhorn fungus

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Elegant is not an apt word for this fungus in my opinion. Its fruiting body consists of long pink cylinders covered with a dark brown mucilage at the tip. They belong to the family ‘Phallaceae’ (I understand the source of this name). The cylinder emerges from a whitish ‘egg’, a puffball-like body. Flies were buzzing about, attracted to the putrid smell.

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My thought when I first saw the fungus was that Aliens had invaded. Actually, the fungus has found an ideal location to grow. Recently it has been very wet, after a long spell of dry weather. The area where I keep my lawn chairs is mulched with wood chips, providing a source of food for the Stinkhorns.  I think the space had been made more habitable by the lawn chair which has kept air movement down and humidity high.

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Sorry. I am a botanist and I understand that I am the invader on our property. But these look disgusting, smell disgusting and, if people have to come to my front door, no one will ever visit me again.

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Copyright Jane Tims 2015

 

Written by jane tims

September 17, 2015 at 12:32 pm

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