Photo of the Week – May 21, 2015

We were working at our Rulo Bluffs Preserve this week.  While Nelson was shredding brush on the ridge tops, I was pulling garlic mustard and killing small trees.  I also found time to take a few photos.  Here is one of a small Symphoricarpus  plant (a small shrub – I’m not sure which species it is.  Probably coralberry).  I liked the way the light from the overcast sky brought out the subtle color and texture in the leaves.

The Nature Conservancy's Rulo Bluffs Preserve.  Nebraska.  Buckbrush (coralberry?) Symphoricarpus sp.

The Nature Conservancy’s Rulo Bluffs Preserve., Nebraska.

I also found a brown snake, a bright red bug nymph, a shiny metallic fly, and more.  I’ll share those photos next week, once I get time to work through them.


Photo of the Week – September 18, 2014

I’m writing this from The Nature Conservancy’s Niobrara Valley Preserve in north-central Nebraska, where I’m attending a prescribed fire planning workshop.  The weather up here is beautiful, and the prairies are already wearing their autumn colors.  The most conspicuous color on the landscape is the bright red of smooth sumac, which contrasts wonderfully with the more subtle browns and golds of the grasses.

Smooth sumac and prairie along the Niobrara River at The Nature Conservancy's Niobrara Valley Preserve.

Smooth sumac and prairie along the Niobrara River at The Nature Conservancy’s Niobrara Valley Preserve.

This photo was taken in one of the few parts of the Preserve that wasn’t impacted by the big wildfire of 2012.  I walked and photographed areas that were affected by the fire as well, and I’ll post some of those photos and descriptions soon.  In short, everything I saw is looking great; no significant invasive plant issues, complete recovery of grasslands, and positive developments under the burned pine woodland areas.