On the forest floor

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After a mile or two of a hike that began in tall grassland and meadows we suddenly entered a stretch of trail that wound it’s way through a luxuriant forest filled with treasures of all kind. From beautiful Woodland Pinedrops to what seemed an unending variety of ground covers, the landscape was transformed. From dry to wet, from brown to green, you never know what you’ll find on the forest floor.

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Unusual fungi and tiny white bells.

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Life took many forms and all play a part in the ecosystem of the forest floor.

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Wishing you a wonderful weekend and some time to explore.

Little Hunters

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One sunny afternoon we noticed these little (less than an inch in length) Bluet Damselflies  hovering and sometimes landing on the tiny flowers of a goldenrod plant. After taking a closer look and a few photos we discover why. They were hunting even smaller flies that were pollinating the flowers. The hunting forays appeared to be quite successful as they nabbed numerous meals on this one little stem.

Little hunters with a big appetite.

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Loggerhead Shrike

Sitting on a fence post looking for his next victim is a Loggerhead Shrike. “These birds sit on low, exposed perches and scan for rodents, lizards, birds, and insects. They eat smaller prey (such as ground beetles) right away, but they are famous for impaling larger items on thorns or barbed wire to be eaten later. The species often hovers. When flying it uses bursts of very rapid wingbeats.”

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Loggerhead_Shrike/id

This time the victim was a large Grasshopper.

Which the Shrike Caught and them impailed on this barbed wire fence.

The Shrike let the Grasshopper be for a minute but quickly went to town on his meal.

Laramie, WY.