Friday, February 27, 2015

9-Jul-2012 Wachusett Reservoir Kendall Cove, Massachusetts

Site locations
Another week, another pair of sampling sites.  But my first site of the day would be something new: pine cones on the beach!

Site A
Site A was located on the western shore of Tahanto Point in Kendall Cove, where I found numerous eastern white pine (Pinus strobus) cones on the sand and pebble beach.  Some appeared to lay where they had fallen, while others had clearly been moved by wave action and now rested in the beach wrack.

Site A cone and wrack
Tapping 55 cones, I collected 8 juvenile spiders and 1 adult microspider TBD.  The ribbon of wrack, comprised mainly of pine needles, was long but not very thick.  I was only able to collect half a load of it, and from that, only one juvenile spider.

Site B
Site B was situated on high ground in the woods just northwest of the head of Kendall Cove.  Mature eastern white pines and younger sugar maples (Acer saccharum) dominated the overstory.

Fifty tapped cones yielded 7 spiders (not to mention a cricket and a moth), but only 2 identifiable species.  Guess what they were?  Yes, "the regulars", Phrurotimpus alarius (Phrurolithidae) and Neon nellii (Salticidae).  I suppose that sifting the ample maple-pine litter would have produced a nice batch of specimens, but I decided not to delve in due to the ubiquity of poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans) in the area.

"We were here."
A dragonfly has emerged
An old stone wall at Site B, together with the nearby place names of Sholan, Tahanto and Kendall, were reminders of the thriving communities that once inhabited the now-quiet reservoir and surrounding forest.

A toad metamorph on the beach, less than an inch long!

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