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Hurricane Irma

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Hurricane Irma is here, and from tonight into early afternoon tomorrow is supposed to be the worst of the storm for us here in northeast Florida. We are fortunate to live in a zone D area on the A-F flood probability scale, with A most likely to flood and F least likely. We did not have a mandatory evacuation for our area, though all of the A and B zones did have to evacuate.

It’s windy and rainy now, as predicted for tonight, and we’re just riding it out (or hunkering down, as they always say during hurricanes here). No problems so far. The power is still on and it would be wonderful if we don’t lose our power tonight. Last year our electricity was out for a week after Hurricane Matthew went through. Here are a few photos from today.

Wind and rain in the backyard.

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More wind.

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During hurricanes frogs often just appear on our sliding glass back door. Max was fascinated when this one showed up.

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Little bluebird looking for bugs this morning before the storm really moved in.

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We have plenty of supplies–food, water, batteries, flashlights and battery-powered lanterns, a propane stove and a charcoal grill, and the rest of the things they always tell us to stock up on when a hurricane is coming. So we’re as ready as we can be for this storm. If the power stays on I’ll check back in tomorrow.

 

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Thursday Photos

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An assortment today, starting with this little skipper butterfly on a basil plant. One pair of its wings is lifted up vertically, and the other pair is flat and horizontal.

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A baby anole was out on a basil plant also. I’ve been surprised to see so many little ones climbing around in the basil plants this year. We have more basil than usual and the plants are in larger pots, both of which may be making a difference.

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Big guy on the fence. This is the current guy in charge of the area near the gate. He seems to be used to seeing me and will just calmly sit and watch me when I approach with the camera.

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Raindrops on the cedar vine on the fence.

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A pair of black swallowtail butterflies.

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And another swallowtail, the one I identified the other day as a King Swallowtail. There is an almost identical butterfly called the Giant Swallowtail, and now I’m not sure which this one is.

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One more of the King or Giant Swallowtail.

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Max and More on Thursday

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I took Max outside today with the intention of taking a few photos of him. At first he wasn’t very interested.

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But when I pulled a couple of dog treats out of my pocket, he brightened up and was suddenly ready to pose. Look at that smile–and those giant ears!

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This is one of our screen door anoles, hanging around the plants near the back door. She’s a pretty female brown anole.

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Closer look at the anole–she’s looking back at the camera.

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We had a storm this afternoon, so there are raindrops on this gloriosa lily in the backyard. The lily looks a bit like a pinwheel from this viewpoint.

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Another lily in the front yard.

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After the Rain on Wednesday

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More rain today, very heavy at times, but we do need it. After it stopped I went out with Max and the camera, and the first thing I spotted was this Mourning Dove up in a tree. It seemed to be grooming itself after the storm.

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Mourning Dove, looking a little better.

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One more of the dove.

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Nearby a squirrel was running up a tree branch, but it froze when it saw me.

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It was motionless for a couple of minutes.

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And then it turned to look around before going on up the branch.

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Raindrops on branches and vines.

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Raindrops on a leaf.

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Rainy Saturday

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For the first time in weeks we had a rainy day today–the rain was really needed. We have forest fires going in the southeast US, and though we’re not anywhere near the fires and are perfectly safe, we’re still getting smoke and ashes in the air sometimes. I hope the rain has helped. I went outside with the camera during a couple of breaks in the rain.

Tomatoes after the rain.

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Lantana flowers sprinkled with tiny raindrops.

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Raindrop on the tip of a leaf, catching the sun.

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Yesterday I transplanted some small basil plants into two large pots. I love having basil outside the back door. We use fresh basil a lot, and when the plants flower they attract honeybees and butterflies.

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Brown anole on the fence, trying to look impressive with a dewlap display.

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One more of the anole showing off.

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Wednesday Photos

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A mostly gray, wet day here.

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I did see a little Yellow-rumped Warbler in a tree.

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And a closer look at the warbler.

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Female cardinal stretching and bending to reach some berries.

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One from the other day, when the sun was out and the sky was blue: it’s the Loggerhead Shrike again. I like this little bird–I’ve been surprised by its curiosity and boldness.

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Sunday Photos

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Storms rolled through this afternoon with rain, wind, and tornado watches. Fortunately all we had were gray skies and rain.

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We did get some sun today too, and I saw several anoles. This is the green anole I’ve seen before around the back door.

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And this is the male brown anole I’ve seen before, sitting up exactly like this in the same spot on the fence, just looking around.

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Eastern Phoebe picking berries.

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And Max in the yard, looking up at me.

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