Saturday, June 28, 2008

Wetlands Hike in Shippensburg, PA

I'm always looking for new places to take the dog for walks. I used to go on the railroad spur through town until I saw in the newspaper that it was actually considered trespassing and the police were arresting people.

I found this new trail connecting Dykeman springs on the edge of Shippensburg with a Little League field and eventually Earl Street. The creek goes all the way through town. There are some fabulous ponds and wetlands along the trail. Part of the trail goes over an old railroad bed with a very nice wooden bridge. It also goes through a short tunnel under an active railroad. I plan to return here often to see birds and the changing vegetation.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.
I almost forgot to mention that Beans, the dog, like it too.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Battlestar Galactica

I just watched the Battlestar mid-season conclusion, Revelations, on the Sci-Fi website. All the cylons, but the fifth hidden one, are now out in the open. The humans and cylons had to work together to find earth.

I didn't expect the ending. Be careful what you wish for; it may not be what you want. The ending reminded of one of Isaac Asimov's Foundation sequels, Foundation and Earth, where the group from the Second Foundation find the once-thought mythical home of humanity. They find an earth that is uninhabitable because of past wars. But, they find on the moon the ancient robot, R. Daneel Olivaw, a character from the Robot series of novels. Olivaw reveals that he has been manipulating human history over the centuries to protect humanity. Here's a link to the Wikipedia entry. The second half of the series will probably concentrate on how the humans and cylons will try to make earth livable. Also, the last hidden cylong will be revealed. It should be exciting.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Scarlet Tananger

While visiting the Waynesboro Watershed on Saturday I noticed this intensely bright red bird with black wings. It was in a mature hardwood stand. I tried to zoom in as much as possible. When I got home and looked in the bird book I found that it was a male scarlet tananger. This one was probably on display looking for a mate. From the book:

" When the male arrives on the breeding grounds, he perches at the tops of tall trees and sings to defend his territory and attract a mate. In the molt following the breeding season, the male retains his black wings and tail, but his plumage becomes a misture of green, yellow, and red patches, later becoming dull green and yellow, appearing similar to the female."

I guess I got him at the right time.

The book I used is Birds of North America by Fred Alsop
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Canada Geese

Originally uploaded by P_Linehan.

I was at the Waynesboro Watershed reservoir yesterday with a group of alumni. I saw this Canada geese family swimming in the water. The goslings have grown quite a bit. They were probably just eggs when we were doing field labs here back in April. I wonder when they will start flying?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Flag Day Floral Display

Flag Day Floral Display
Originally uploaded by P_Linehan.


I found this floral planting at the Welcome Center on Interstate 78 in Easton, PA while returning home from Maine. It was a hot, hot afternoon and the flowers were holding up well. As it happens it was Flag Day, which is celebrated mostly in Massachusetts and Maine. The next morning I saw a report on Flag Day on the CBS Sunday Morning show. They discussed the huge varieties of American flags over the years. And the father of vexillology ( the study of flags), or at least the man who invented the term (Whitney Smith) was interviewed.

The American flag is truly the people's flag that has always and will continue to develop over time.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Remains of post office, Bangor fire (LOC)

Remains of post office, Bangor fire (LOC)
Originally uploaded by The Library of Congress.

I've been poking around Flickr and found the archives of the Bain News Serivice showing the Post Office on fire during the Bangor Great Fire of 1911. I used to live on Center St. in the late seventies. I had no idea this had occured sixty years before. Fascinating.

One of the Flickr members gave this link to a Wikipedia article describing the damage of this fire.

Here's one more image from the same collection showing a man made homeless by the fire.