I was very surprised to find this small Tulip tree sapling at the FWG!! I must have walked by it many, many times and never noticed it. It is about 18 inches to 24 inches tall, so perhaps it was covered by DSV (it is in the midst of a patch of it). This species is native to southern Ontario and is one of the trees usually associated with the Carolinian zone of southern Ont. There is at least one in the Arboretum so I imagine our sapling comes from that source. Unless someone planted it at FWG??
Common barberry (Berberis)
As far as I know, we have only one of these shrubs at the FWG. It has been there for awhile as it is now quite large. I first noticed it a few years ago and wasn't sure if it would persist, but clearly it has! It is a non-native species considered invasive of natural areas in many regions. However, so far this one appears not to be spreading at all. We'll keep an eye on it though.
House finch with crabapples
The crabapples at FWG had attracted many house finches and robins. Meanwhile, the big stand of burdock not far away was full of juncos, chickadees and more house finches.
Red squirrel with walnut
It is a common sound around the garden these days, the gnawing of walnuts by reds! Red squirrels have been gathering walnuts into large piles, as well as stockpiling cones. The greys meanwhile, have been scatterhoarding like mad!
Mason wasp (Ancistrocerus sp.)
Today, inspired by Diane's observations of so many insect species yesterday, I sought out some still-flowering goldenrod and sure enough, there were some tachinid flies, a couple of tarnished plant bugs, and this very slow-moving mason wasp who was probably, sadly, at the end of his life span. I say "he" because this looks like a male, with the yellow face.
Shamrock orb weaver
We came across a large web near one of the nest boxes and peeking under a thistle plant, saw this very big female Shamrock orb weaver.
Seeds in nest box
This box contained a black-capped chickadee nest. The nest had later been taken over by a mouse who had added some seed fluff into the middle of the chickadee nest, although it looked like the whole thing had been abandoned before being completely finished. At the bottom of the nest was a layer of seeds. Not sure which plants they are from, but I'll try to find out. The mouse had clearly used the box as a storehouse for seeds,
Yellow-collared Scape moth (Cisseps fulvicollis)
This is another insect found by Diane at the garden, a lovely, remarkably fresh looking yellow-collared scape moth on tansy.
Tarnished Plant Bug (Lygus lineolaris)
A tiny little plant bug still out and about in this warm weather. Along with this, and the other insects noted by Diane, Claudia, Jeewa and I also saw a shamrock orb weaver, some wasps (looked like yellowjackets), and some biting late season blackflies.
Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare)
Although late October, there are still flowers in bloom here and there. Jeewa took some shots of this tansy plant. Also in flower are a few Queen Anne's Lace, goldenrod, mustards, clovers, dandelions, etc.
Multicolored Asian Lady beetle (Harmonia axyridis)
The warm weather brought out lots of insects. Diane was at the garden also and found, as we did, a number of these pretty lady beetles. She also found some tachinid flies, a green lacewing, grasshoppers, a moth and a few plant bugs.
Tree swallow nest
Claudia took this photo of a well made, well-feathered swallow nest, when we cleaned out the boxes. However, you can see, just above the screwdriver, a dead fledged young tree swallow. It was fully feathered but for whatever reason had not survived.