Thursday, March 30, 2023

Redefining Waste

We all know the adage 'One person's trash is another person's treasure,' so how about 'one creature's poop is another creature's food?' It sounds icky and unpleasant, but to the creature who needs it to survive, it's wonderful. 

Flies rush to the odor of fresh poop - it ensures their survival. They lay their eggs in it, so their larvae have something to feed on when they hatch. Perhaps flies might wonder how our babies can eat pureed apples!

And of course, Dung Beetles feed on feces. Even insect excrement has its benefits -it is an organic fertilizer and improves the soil.

Molds grow on animal feces too, using it as a substrate from which to gain sustenance, and at the same time breaking it down. One of them is known as called hairy poop mold - I'm sure we can all picture it. Microbes such as this are a good thing - they're the perfect way to 'get rid of' the by-products of each species and keep the nutrients in the system without them causing disease or spreading illnesses.

Waste is part of the process of life and recycling, so waste is not the end-product, but a stage in a process that keeps re-packaging nutrients into something useful. Decomposition and the breaking down of nutrients is a normal, natural process to sustain life on earth.

The idea of something being called waste relates to its usefulness (or lack thereof) to its producer. Many organisms benefit and depend on the by-products of others, which to them is not waste, but life-giving. So let's 're-package' the idea of waste!

Waste to me is anything that is unnecessary, not sustainable and not recyclable i.e. some of the things WE humans create. This is waste.

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

A Book Well Traveled

I have been waiting a long time to receive my copy of "Final Draft" written by my friend Shelley Burbank and I'm happy to report that it's finally here!

This book has had quite the journey through the postal system, with inexplicable twists, turns and doubling back on itself before getting here. I'm sure Olivia Lively was busy solving a mystery on the way, hence the convoluted route!

Here's what we know - she left Avenal, NJ (1), traveled to Windsor, CT (2), then on to Springfield, MA (3), before doing an inexplicable U-turn and making her way down to Jersey City (4). Maybe she was covering her tracks or had to follow an unexpected lead, because she then made a detour all the way down to Philadelphia, PA (5), before making another stop at Jersey City (6). From here, she headed back up to Springfield in Massachusetts again (7), and then made her way directly to southern Maine, and finally Limerick (8). She even dallied a few days at some of her stops, but whatever Olivia Lively was investigating remains top secret. Follow her journey below:

She has now arrived - relaxed, and ready for some Maine sunshine, and perhaps more P. I. work ... can't wait to read what's between the covers!

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

TV Time

It's that time of year again - the TV's have returned. Turkey Vultures, that is. They are my favorite harbingers of spring. I know the arrival of robins, mergansers and bluebirds are also special, but to me the TVs' obvious sovereignty over the spring skies encapsulates it best.

I love the distinctive way they fly - unique, a tell-tale giveaway. It's described as dihedral flight (they hold their wings in the shape of a V as they teeter in high level winds).

I spotted my first one of this year to mark the Ides of March (3/15) and was so very excited that I had to put it on my blog!

Flirting with thermals

These masterful scavengers

Rock dihedral flight.


Monday, March 27, 2023

Troll Toes

These troll toes need a pedicure, don't you think? Is that an ingrown toenail I see, or just a fungus? Maybe some moisturizing cream is needed?

Or do you see a multi-headed, blind salamander? Wrinkled tortoise skin?

What a lovely creature this piece of ginger is!