Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas, 2014

Season's Greetings and Happy Holidays!

Special greetings from the Happy-face Dragonfly:

To help us all get in the Christmas spirit, here's a physics problem from Walker Physics involving Santa:

The situation can be visualized as follows:

And now for the calculation:

Here's a bit of insight into the results:

Ah, nothing like a physics calculation to add to the enjoyment of a day.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Late-Season Dragonfly

Betsy and I visited Cranberry Lake every sunny day this Fall to see if any dragonflies were flying.  The last day we saw a dragonfly at Cranberry Lake was Thanksgiving, November 27.  On that day we saw two male Autumn Meadowhawks, which set a new record for a late flight date by one day.  They were perched in the sun, low to the ground, and the temperature was 55 ˚F.  Nice conditions, overall, though it was a bit breezy.  One of the meadowhawks flew upward, grabbed a flying insect, and landed to consume it, so they were still quite active.

Here's a photo of a male Autumn Meadowhawk:

This one is perched on the fence near the parking area, a favorite perching spot due to its exposure to the sun.

The weather has been so variable lately.  One day when we visited Cranberry Lake there was a fog bank around the shoreline of the island.  We decided to go out to Washington Park to see what it was like there.  Here's the view at Green Point:

At the top of the loop drive we were above the fog bank, and it was sunny and warm.  Here's the view:

Cranberry Lake is in the hills in the distance, above the fog on this day.  Birds were active at this lookout point, including a flock of 30 American Robins, 4 Varied Thrushes, and a single (naturally) Townsend's Solitaire.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Dragonfly Magazine

The Happy-face Dragonfly was featured recently on the cover of the (fictitious) magazine, Dragonflies.  Here it is.

Looks like a good issue.  Mr. Happy-face sure gets around!