Many moons ago a scared, injured tortoiseshell showed up at the door. Cats have that way of knowing. That yard. That door. Those people. We took her in.

She was one of those beautiful torties whose face was half black, half caramel.  Dad named her Eurydice, after the wife whom Orpheus was able to bring back from the underworld. She was gentle and not meant to be feral: her hunting harvests usually consisted of insect parts and leaves. When we took in a stray kitten, she mothered her.  As with all our cats, she had other names, but came to be called “Momcat.” She remained with us 23 years.

While dad still had his sight, he lovingly painted a memorial stone, which overlays her remains in his back yard beneath a towering bougainvillea. 12-24-2018 MomCat 2.jpg


Monarch migration

Each year, we look forward to the fall migration of Monarch butterflies. In central Arkansas, they generally appear the first week or two of October. This year, we also had a chance to see them on the Floribama gulf coast, those butterflies following a route from the northeastern U.S. Compared to what we saw in Arkansas this year, the ones in Florida were so numerous, you could not go a few minutes without seeing another one southwest bound.

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Migrating Monarch butterfly lapping up nectar in Florida panhandle beach dune blossoms en route to its overwintering site in Mexico.
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Flying over Deer Lake State Park in Florida. 
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This photo, for me, somewhat captures the vastness of a Monarch’s migration from the Midlantic states, along the northern gulf coast and on to Mexico. 

Tarantula transformation

A tarantula is undergoing an involuntary transformation induced by the paralyzing sting of a tarantula hawk wasp. The wasp dragged the limp spider around a corner and up two stories to the eaves of the house, where the unfortunate arachnid became both unwilling nursemaid and pantry to a young wasp.

10-6-2017 Tarantula Hawk-Tarantula.jpg