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"And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good.   And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day" (Genesis 1:31)

Cohotate Preserve
 25 May 2002 Field Trip
(To enlarge the photos, click on the photos or links)

(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 01)  Today, as we entered Cohotate Preserve, we were greeted by these wild geraniums which were growing beside the gravel path.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 01a)  This is a closer view of the wild geranium.  Note its distinctively shaped leaves which aid in identifying this wildflower when it's not in bloom.







(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 02)  This is an enlarged view of this normally 1" diameter wild geranium.  A detached anther is resting on the lower petal.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 02a)  This enlarged photo of the wild geranium gives us a bee's eye view of the center of the flower.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 03)  Most of the leaves on the trees had opened to their full size, and cast their shadows in interesting patterns along the pathway.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 04)  More light and shadow along the entry path.  Communing with nature in this way gives us a special appreciation for the whole of God's creation, as we hope it does for you, too.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 05)  This little drainage ravine carries the overflow water from the pond down to the Hudson River.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 06)  Last year's cattails stand as sentinels along the northern side of the Cohotate Preserve pond.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 07)  On the northern side of the pond there is a depression in the pathway that has filled with water creating this little pond -  another point of interest.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 08)  This is a closer view of the little pathway pond.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 09)  In the water along the edge of the main pond algae is growing, giving cover to a couple of frogs who dove in as we approached.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 10)  A few of the wild flowers growing on the hillside on the west side of the pond.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 11)  This is a closer view of one of the previously pictured wild flowers.  Most of the blooms on this one have already fallen off.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 12)  Prior to our arrival, a deer had strolled along the same wet path that we were on, leaving his or her footprint in the mud.  (This photo is an enlargement.  The hoof print was not made by "Big Foot" deer!)





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 13)  As we walked along the path on the north side of the pond, we crossed over this little foot bridge.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 14)  In this photo, we are looking northeastward across the pond.   Telltale evidence of past construction activity is still visible in the foreground, where the lack of topsoil has hindered plant growth.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 15)  In this photo, we're looking in a more northerly direction across the pond.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 16)  After we left the pond area, we began walking down the path toward the Hudson River.  We came upon an old, half dead, double-trunk tree.  The northern half of the trunk had broken off about 15 feet above the ground and fallen along the side of the path.  This photo shows the fungus growing on the dead trunk.  There is also an interesting plant growth in the notch of the trunks.


(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 17)  This is an enlarged photo of the unidentified plant growth that was growing in the notch of the tree.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 18)  In nature, even the dead support life.  The decaying trunk of this tree provides nourishment for these fungi.  Lichen, a symbiotic relationship between an alga and a fungus, is also growing on this tree; but unlike the larger fungus, the alga in the lichen supplies the food, while the fungus stores the moisture, keeping both alive.



(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 19)  As we walked along the shore of the Hudson River, this bush with its bright white blooms caught our attention.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 20)  No matter how old a person becomes, there is always something new to learn about or investigate.  This bush is a typical example.  It's quite common, but we have not been able to identify it; thus, it becomes a challenge for us to find out what it is.  If you know, please reply by clicking on the mailbox below.



(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 21)  This is an even closer view of the bush with one of its flower clusters and the leaves with their veins and toothed edges.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 22)  There is such intricate detail and beauty in even the smallest of God's creations, that it fills us with awe and wonder.  Each of the little white flowers appears to have 5 petals, 5 stamens, and 1 pistil.  By looking closely, we can see some of the cell structure in the petals and the individual pollen grains.



(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 23)  As we continued northward along the western shore of the Hudson River, we spotted this lichen growing on a rock.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 24)  This is another photo of the lichen on the rock.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 25)  This is another rock with several species of lichen growing upon it.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 25a)  This is a closer view showing at least three species of lichen.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 25b)  This is another portion of the lichen covered rock.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 26)  Farther north along the shore line we saw this rock which is a habitat for lichen, moss and a few other plants.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 27)  This is a closer view of a portion of the moss covered rock.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 28)  This is an even closer look at the moss.  The spore capsules lead us to believe that this is a species of cord moss.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 28a)  In this enlarged photo, we can a closer look at the spore capsules.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 29)  We thought that the new growth of blue flag iris amidst the dead wood made an interesting contrast, and took this picture.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 30)  Looking northward from our position on the shore of the Hudson River was this partially protected shallow cove area where arrow arum have taken root and thrived.  Their new growth is just beginning to rise above the water.



(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 30a)  This is a closer view of the arrow arum being lapped by the small waves produced by the wake of a passing boat.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 31)  As we turned around and began to head southward along the shore of the Hudson River we saw this piece of driftwood with a hollowed out area where a former branch had been.  Since it could hold water, it became a home for algae.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 32)  For many years this old tree has stood along the banks of the Hudson River, tenaciously holding its grip upon the bank despite the eroding effects of wind and water.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 33)  This tree has not fared so well.  Wind and water has toppled it, but portions are still clinging to life being supplied with moisture from the remaining roots.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 34)  Since the tide was still low, we decided to walk along the shoreline instead of returning to the path.  As we headed southward we saw this lichen covered rock.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 34a)  This is a closer view of some of the lichen on this shoreline rock.







(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 35)  As we continued southward along the Hudson River shoreline, we encountered more lichen covered limestone rocks.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 35a)  This is another section of nature's continuing artwork - a collage of light, shadow, rock, twigs, lichen and moss.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 36)  These two clumps of arrow arum were sprouting from the low tide mud.  The dense matting of decaying organic matter supported us as we walked across this area of the shoreline and prevented us from sinking into the mud.



(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 37)  As we neared the grassy park area, where the old ice house used to be, we spotted this Polyporellus squamosus.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 37a)  This patch of violets was growing around the Polyporellus squamosus.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 38)  In this photo we have a closer look at the scales that make up the surface of the Polyporellus squamosus.  They look something like feathery shingles.




(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 38a)  This is another close up view of the scale patterns on the Polyporellus squamosus.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 39)  This patch of wild geraniums was growing near the education building.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 40)  On the way back up the hill we spotted this False Solomon-seal growing near the path.





(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 41)  This is a closer view of the False Solomon-seal bloom.  The more we learn to appreciate and have respect for one aspect of God's creation, the easier we should find it to enlarge our sphere of compassion and respect to encompass the whole of creation (humans, non-humans, and the environment).



(Cohotate - 25 May 2002 - 41a)  This is an enlarged view of the flowers of the False Solomon-seal.  After this hike, we walked back to our car and drove home, bringing an end a very enjoyable morning.




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