Happy Holidays!

Dear Readers!

Our suburban yards are filled with so many wonders this winter season, we squirrels are caught up in your celebration.

Deer statue

Happy Holidays from your friends at The Squirrel Nutwork!

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One of Nature’s Mysteries to Solve

Hey–yawn–there.

It’s been so overcast and gloomy in Northern Virginia, I didn’t get my post up very early. But this week I wanted to share a real mystery–even to us squirrels here at The Squirrel Nutwork. This er, object photograph was sent in to us–thanks, Jeanine!–so we didn’t have the pleasure of curling it, poking our noses to it or taking a swipe at it.

Mystery #111

Any guesses?

Back with you later!

~~~

Looks like we are a little stumped. Heh, for a bit I–Hickory Squirrel–considered those little holes and the gray coloring meant a paper wasp nest got rolled around in a mud puddle and became somewhat waterlogged.

Then Miz Flora declared it a fungus because of the stalk emerging from the ground.

Nutmeg thought it might be a puffball that dried up before maturing.

But during another email exchange, our reader/photographer suggested false truffle. That’s looking like the best guess after we looked it up. The stalk is a clue, and the ‘spongy appearance’.  If any of you human readers come across one again, it seems a nasty odor and cutting the false truffle open to see if a stalk is hidden inside would confirm that’s the group.

However, please do not consider our guesses here accurate identification. Fungus are tricky to identify and since many are poisonous, please do not use our ramblings as proof. We never recommend eating anything from the wild without positive identification from experts!

One Of Nature’s Mysteries to Solve

Hey There!

Long time no see! We are on our winter break, but because Northern Virginia has seen little snow so far, I want to poke this in for a substitute.

Mystery #110

What is it?

Give me your guesses and I’ll check back later.

~~~

I don’t suppose this one is too much of a mystery since we featured Common Milkweed, Asclepias syriaca, several times this summer. See the posts here and here. These are the seeds, now escaping from their pods, dry and fluffing out.

Common Milkweed Seedpod

It’s just such a great native plant!

Common Milkweed

This stand of the wildflowers gone to seed was along a suburban street near us–lots of sun and in a place humans can easily see it. Street flowers.

street flowers

Hope your fall to winter transition is going well!