It is the beginning of the fall semester at the college - always a frantically busy period. So my birding this week has been limited to a couple of brief visits to the campus nature trail. Fall migration is in full swing now but there have been few signs of it at the college: All I saw this week was a Yellow Warbler and an Empidonax flycatcher, neither of which I was able to photograph.
Our yards at home have been largely empty of birds, too, except for migrating female and fale Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, which spend their days arguing over our nectar feeders.
If birds have been scarce in our yards, other life forms have not.
Butterflies have been plentiful at home and at work, with frequent fly-throughs by Giant Swallowtails.
Question Marks have been around, too.
I can't remember ever having seen so many Anoles before.
We have plenty of Mediterranean Geckoes also. The light outside our garage is regularly surrounded by 7 or 8, feasting on the bugs drawn to the light.
Our area seems to be having a good year for dragonflies.
I thought this one was particularly pretty.
Spiders have been less visible than usual but this one caught my eye the other day.
The Yellowjackets continue to nest happily under the roof of our deck. Over the past three months the nest has increased significantly in size and in activity. We don't bother them and - so far at least - they don't bother us.
Some different wasps or hornets have started constructing a nest above our garage door.
Meanwhile Mud-dauber Wasps have been busy making nests at various points around the outside of the house.
Last but not least, our yards (and the campus nature trail) are hopping with toads, most of which are still tiny.
To make up for my recent lack of birding activity, we're going down to the coast for the weekend. Although I haven't decided on a route yet, I'm sure we'll visit a couple of sites on Bolivar and Galveston, as well as some others on the way. The weather is forecast to change Sunday and I'm hoping this will bring in more migrating birds!