Photo of the Week – April 13, 2018

Spring is here, but only for a few more hours.  We saw some nice green-up this week, with temperatures in the mid to upper 70’s.  Tonight, we’re supposed to get 5-7 inches of snow along the Platte River and as much as a foot and a half up at the Niobrara Valley Preserve.  Next week?  More warm weather.

I did my best to enjoy the warm weather this week.  Between prescribed fires, I got my camera out of the bag a few times, and found both flowers and invertebrates (or at least one) to photograph.

Fringed puccoon (Lithospermum incisum) was popping out of the ground this week.

I rescued this leopard frog from fire as it was hopping into danger during our prescribed burn this week.

Rosettes of fourpoint evening primrose (Oenothera rhombipetala) keep some color through the winter, but their winter red is transitioning to green now.

I spotted this juvenile wolf spider scooting through a patch of bare sand and it sat still just long enough for me to photograph it.

Sun sedge (Carex heliophila) started to bloom on Thursday. I know that specifically because I checked on it Tuesday and Wednesday, desperately hoping for some color to photograph. By midday on Thursday, it was finally starting to bloom on the south-facing slopes of hills at our Platte River Prairies.


This entry was posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants and tagged , , by Chris Helzer. Bookmark the permalink.

About Chris Helzer

Chris Helzer is the Director of Science for The Nature Conservancy in Nebraska. His main role is to evaluate and capture lessons from the Conservancy’s land management and restoration work and then share those lessons with other landowners – both private and public. In addition, Chris works to raise awareness about the importance of prairies and their conservation through his writing, photography, and presentations to various groups. Chris is also the author of "The Ecology and Management of Prairies in the Central United States", published by the University of Iowa Press. He lives in Aurora, Nebraska with his wife Kim and their children.

1 thought on “Photo of the Week – April 13, 2018

  1. That sun sedge is an interesting plant. And bless you for saving the little frog. That reminded me of a favorite line from Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim At Tinker Creek: “We have not yet encountered any god who is as merciful as a man who flicks a beetle over on its feet.”


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