Monday, April 23, 2018

Nature Weekend

Such a lovely way to spend the weekend!

I had a work event that involved camping with my colleagues and various guests along the banks of my favorite river, the St. Johns. We enjoyed hiking, birding, kayaking, an eco-tour boat ride, a clean-up, communal food, great conversation, and -- of course -- a bonfire.

We saw this plant community on one of our hikes: shoestring fern and various mosses, all thriving together on the trunk of a sabal palm tree.

This beauty was a highlight of the weekend for me: a banded water snake, perfectly balanced on an outstretched branch over an old logging canal that connects to the river. It was a cool afternoon and he/she was quite sluggish, allowing us to look as much as we wanted. I'm usually not very good at spotting snakes, so this was a real treat.

You know you're camping when . . .  you've only been there 10 minutes and you already don't match.


  1. I always thought water snakes could be kind of aggressive, perhaps it's a different kind. The kind I'm thinking of isn't poisonous but it can be mean.

    1. Most snakes don't want anything to do with humans, and banded water snakes are particularly low-key. I keep my eyes open around the water, so no one gets surprised (them or me)!

      Maybe you're thinking of water moccasins (cottonmouths)? They have a reputation for being aggressive, but I have a friend who says, "Most snakes are aggressive when you're trying to kill them with a shovel." That helps me remember to mind my own business when I see one.

      This snake was especially fun to see because I was on the dock above. I got a good look without disturbing him/her.


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