Monday, May 25, 2020

What is it Wednesday archive: May 9, 2018




Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on
May 9, 2018. 



And the answer is....



This is an adult mayfly. 

Mayflies are one of the critters we find most often in our streams at Lutherlyn. Most frequently we find the nymph stage of the mayfly, which lives in the water (and is easier to spot and catch). 

When the mayfly emerges into its adult stage, it leaves the water behind and lives the rest of its short life on land and in the air. 

Sometimes we find adult mayflies, or even get to watch them as they emerge from nymph to adult. This photo was taken just after emergence: its left wing is still a little crumpled from unfolding. 

Mayflies are great to have around because they are indicators of good water quality.


Stream studies are one of LEEP’s most popular activities during school field trips, summer camp, retreats, and other events.  


Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

What is it Wednesday: May 20, 2020




Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on
May 20. 2020. 



And the answer is....


This is a frond of a type of fern called “interrupted fern.” 

The frond is the whole leaf of a fern; each division of that leaf is called a pinna (pinnae for more than one). In this picture we can see one pinna that is dark green and bumpy – that is the fertile part of the fern, the part that produces spores to create more ferns.


Many ferns have sterile frond and fertile fronds – some of the fronds have no spores at all (sterile), other fronds do have spores (fertile). In some ferns, the fertile fronds only have spores on some of the pinnae, usually near the top or near the bottom of the frond.

Christmas fern with smaller darker fertile pinnae near the top of the frond. 

Interrupted ferns are unique however – in their fertile fronds, the pinnae with spores on them are in the middle of the frond, with sterile pinnae above and below.

Interrupted fern with dark green fertile pinnae in the middle of the frond.

In these pictures, the fertile pinnae are dark green - that's what they look like when the spores are developing. They turn brown as the spores are mature, then become dark brown and shrivel up after the spores are released. Eventually they may dry up and fall off – leaving the fertile frond with a gap in the middle, looking like its growth was interrupted between the base and the tip of the frond

Fertile fronds of interrupted ferns usually have 3 or 4 pairs of pinnae in the middle of the frond have spores on them. In today's unusual fern however, there is just one fertile pinna on the frond.


Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!

Monday, May 18, 2020

What is it Wednesday archive: sometime in 2017




Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday 
sometime in 2017 - one of our earliest! 



And the answer is....



This little cutie is a Red-spotted Newt. Newts are a type of salamander. 

Red Spotted Newts begin their life when they hatch from eggs laid in water. The newly hatched larvae live in water until the end of the summer when they emerge as bright orange efts. We often see this terrestrial stage of the newt on trails at Lutherlyn during wet weather. Red-spotted Newts live as efts for up to 7 years, then they become adults and return to the water to live out their life for up to 10 more years. As adults they are olive green with fin-like tails that help them swim well. 

Based on its color, the red-spotted newt in this picture is probably in transition from eft stage to adult stage, on its way back to the water, probably in Upper or Lower Lake. 

Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!

Monday, May 11, 2020

What is it Wednesday archive: May 16, 2018



Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on
May 16, 2018. 



And the answer is....


The black dots inside the spirally blobs of gel are spring peeper eggs, found in the garden pond at Terra Dei. 

These were discovered in late April and are now hundreds of tadpoles. In about another month they will hop out of the pond as small frogs. 

Spring peepers are responsible for the high-pitched “peeping” sounds heard when the weather gets warm. Many people think this sound is created by an insect, but it is actually the call of these small frogs looking for a mate. Though they are not much larger than a fingernail, they can raise quite a loud sound on spring and summer nights!


The LEEP staff frequently encounters spring peepers during Animal Encounters in Life in the Wild camp, on night hikes during summer camp and overnight field trips, during Camp Blast and other special occasions, and of course they are the backdrop sound of summer nights at Lutherlyn. Check out Lutherlyn.com for more on ways you can visit Lutherlyn and encounter these delightful little parts of God’s creation. 




Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

What is it Wednesday: May 6, 2020




Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on
May 5, 2020. 



And the answer is....




This is the broken egg of a wild turkey, found at the edge of the forest behind Baker Chapel. We found at least three eggs in this one spot. 






















Wild turkeys make their nests on the ground in dead leaves at the bases of trees, under brush piles or thick shrubbery, or occasionally in open fields or meadows.



Turkeys begin to lay eggs in April and early May, laying one egg a day until the nest contains 8-15 eggs. After the last egg is laid, the hen begins to incubate them all. The baby turkeys, called poults, generally begin to hatch in June. This nest was probably pilfered by a predator. Animals that might eat turkey eggs include raccoons, opossums, skunks, gray foxes, groundhogs, and snakes. If a turkey’s initial nest fails to produce poults, the hen will often lay another clutch of eggs in a new nest.

When you are out in nature, take some time to observe all around you, at various heights, including on the ground – you might find surprising things!

  
Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!

Monday, May 4, 2020

What is it Wednesday archive: May 2, 2018



Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on
May 2, 2018. 



And the answer is....


This beautiful tree is a redbud in bloom, near Wallace Hall at Lutherlyn. 

Redbuds are native to Western Pennsylvania, and are one of the earliest trees to bloom in the spring, providing a welcome burst of color when much of the natural world still looks brown and gray. The redbud’s heart-shaped leaves develop after the flowers are finished blooming.


Hundreds of students visiting Lutherlyn during spring field trips get to see this beautiful tree in bloom every year (and thousands more will visit each spring after it is done blooming). To learn more about LEEP field trip opportunities check out http://lutherlyn.com/ee.





Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

What is it Wednesday: April 29, 2020



Can you identify what's in this photo?


Each Wednesday morning 
on Camp Lutherlyn's Facebook page
 the Lutherlyn Environmental Education Program posts a photo. 


Readers have all morning and afternoon 
to make their best guess about what the photo is. 

Around 6 pm LEEP provides the answer and a brief explanation.


Each week's What is it Wednesday post 
will also be posted on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
 after it is posted on Facebook,
sometimes with additional bonus information. 

In addition to bringing you current editions of What is it Wednesday 
on the Nature of Lutherlyn blog, 
we will be reposting old editions,
creating a What is it Wednesday archive. 

This photo was posted as a What is it Wednesday on
April 29, 2020. 



And the answer is....


This is the blossom of a flowering dogwood, just beginning to open. Soon this blossom will transform into the familiar four-petaled white flower that makes the flowering dogwood tree such a beautiful part of springtime.


One neat thing about this picture is that the dogwood twigs are visible as well as the blossom. Dogwood twigs are distinctive for a couple of reasons. The branches of the twigs grow directly across from each other – this is known as opposite branching pattern and very few tree species in our area grow like this. Maples and ashes are the most common in addition to dogwoods.

You can also see from a close look at dogwood twigs that this is a very slow-growing tree. The small lines that encircle the twig mark the ends of a year’s growth – on dogwood twigs these lines are very close together, showing that they grow only about an inch a year, sometimes less.

Getting to know your natural surroundings can mean learning what the flora and fauna look like in all their life stages, not just the dominant or most familiar ones. Watch a plant up close for a whole year and see what surprising things you notice!  


Like and follow Camp Lutherlyn on Facebook, to see What is it Wednesday posts when they come out and have the opportunity to share your guesses in the comments!