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Knowing your neighbors

  • Blog Post by: Karl Seckinger
  • November 5, 2012 - 12:50 PM
So how much do you really know about Bob, Betty or Clyde down the street. You may recognize their daily patterns like off to work at 6, home at 5, bowling at 7 and most weekends there golfing or shopping but did you know that Sumac, who also lives in the neighborhood, comes with red hairy drupe fruit. Sumac only means red, which isn’t at all black and white but now the White pine down the lane, from the Latin pinus or pit resin was in the past (pre-19th century), well, they were often known as fir, from Old Norse fyrre, and strobus, the soft pine which isn’t a hardwood but take the alley cruising "birch" which is derived from an old Germanic root, birka, translated in English to “white, bright; to shine." And another “bright spot” slinking around in the neighborhood would be none other than the mysterious Lynx. The name "lynx" originated in Middle English via Latin from Greek word "λύγξ derived from the Indo-European root "*leuk-", meaning "light, or brightness in reference to the luminescence of its reflective eyes, and some tall eyes just out of town would be on a Moose, which according to early sources likely derived from moosu meaning "he strips off”. While something that roars off, with eyes much lower to the ground, say on a Ruffed grouse, which by the way have feathered feet, And duly considered omnivores in that they eat snakes, salamanders, insects, berry’s, well the list is endless to what they ingest. Leaves me to wonder, My what a tasty bird. Things I like that I consider tasty to ingest include the common name, "walleye" from the fact that their eyes, like those of lions, reflect white light. This "eyeshine" is the result of a light-gathering layer in the eyes called the tapetum lucidum, which allows the fish to see well in low-light conditions Another low lighter or night lifer is the flying squirrel which cannot actually fly; although they can be airborne by Gliding for a remarkable length of time relying on the tautness of the patagium (a furry membrane) used much like a parachute. Also, once deployed, who knows where they’ll hit the ground, but when they do maybe you can have a seed or two lying about to be friendly to just one of the many forested neighbors. The trout whisperer

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