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Category Archives: Canadian Hill Farm

The White-tailed Deer rut is on and I’ve been seeing a lot of deer wandering around the yard. Yesterday, I watched for over an hour as a the bucks and does ran across the yard.

 

It snowed a bit yesterday so I took a walk through the woods looking for colorful leaves that had fallen. I found a nice spot and decided to take some abstract photos of the leaves. It’s always a fun project in the fall.

 

These were taken in my back yard.

These were taken 10 minutes later.

Every year the last flower blooming in my prairie is the New England Aster. I’m not sure where they came from but about five years ago I started seeing them in the prairie. I mow the prairie every fall so they are spreading. Generally the asters in the area bloom earlier but I live on a hill and have heavy soil so mine bloom late. Since it is the only flower blooming it is visited by butterflies and bees on a regular basis.

Yesterday there was a Monarch Butterfly feeding. It better get moving south because today is snowing out. There were also a few Painted Ladies hanging around.

The thing I look forward to this time of year is photographing the Honey Bees. With the cold nights the bees overnight on the asters. In the morning they are hardly moving so it is easy to photograph them. One morning they were covered in frost.

Frost Covered Honey Bee

 

My wife has taken up weaving after a 30 year gap in her weaving career. She has also created a beginning weaving blog describing some of her weaving projects. She asked me to take some photos of her weaving for her blog. The first items are dish towels. They seem to be a little too good to wash dishes with.

More on her weaving can be found at Canadian Hill Weaving.

The second project is a poncho which was finished just in time for fall.

The final project was a set of Placemats.

I’m seeing a lot of Foxtail on the farm as we go into fall.

I raise red wiggler composting worms. During the summer I put them out in the open range. Actually I put them out around Memorial Day into a 100 gallon composting bin. I’ve use the bin for years but it never worked all that well for composting but it really works well as a summer range for my Red Wigglers. This past week I rounded up most of the worms and put them in the bin where they will reside for the winter. It is kind of a pain to round them up because I have to go through quite a bit of compost to find them. It helps that I only feed them once in the week or two before the roundup. They then gather around the food source so it is relatively easy to find them.

 

I’ve seen quite a few Painted Ladies around the farm the last few weeks. While I was out photographing Monarchs I managed to get a few photos of the Painted Ladies.

 

 

The first couple of weeks in September I had been working out in the yard mowing and repairing my mail box. As I was out and about I would see the occasional monarch butterfly in the surrounding prairie. I tried to get some photos but by the time I retrieved my camera they would be gone. I assumed that they were just a few stragglers hanging around the farm before heading south.

One day I noticed a couple of monarchs out by my mailbox so I went back to the house to get the camera. Of course, when I returned they were gone so I stopped to take some shots in the prairie. When I started walking back to the house I noticed several more Monarchs approaching. I followed them as they moved through the farm in a southerly direction. As they left the prairie several more took their place. I soon realized that what I thought was a few monarch stragglers hanging around was the in fact the fall monarch migration.

I should point out that on my farm I have a house surrounded by a large yard. Between the yard and the pine forest is a prairie buffer. The open land is shaped like a bicycle saddle. The back of the saddle is on the north side of the property and the nose faces the south. I spent most of the day watching the monarchs migrate through. They entered to property from the north and gradually worked their way south and out into neighbors farmland. In all I counted over 40 monarchs in the time I was out taking photos. The irony is that a few days earlier I had driven over 100 miles looking for a cluster of migrating monarchs and didn’t find any.

Most of the prairie flowers were no longer in bloom but I had been doing some selective mowing to cut down the number of goldenrod plants in the prairie. As a result the prairie flowers in the mowed areas were several weeks behind and were still in bloom. These were the plants that the monarchs were feeding on. I need to keep this in mind for next year so that I can provide food for the migrating monarchs.

 

Wandering around the farm this past week I decided to create some abstract photos. These were taken by using a slow shutter speed and either rotating the camera, panning with the camera or moving the lens.