Lake Life: Can you feel it coming?

A white-lined sphinx hummingbird moth feeds.

A white-lined sphinx hummingbird moth feeds.

My son, Lee, shared some great close-ups of a white-lined sphinx hummingbird moth feeding in his backyard. They are fast fliers able to hover, fly backwards and even upside down. They typically feed in the evening and night. They burrow just below the surface of the soil to pupate. The adults are primary pollinators of the evening primrose.

Harvest time is upon us and Halloween is just around the corner. The local pumpkin patches have yielded up piles of orange and gold waiting for your attention. And apples abound at the orchards. Most have been picked but a few remain on the trees. Take a Sunday drive to the local stands. Out back, there are a few hazel nuts the squirrels have missed. Hopefully they will ripen sufficiently for us to enjoy in addition to the squirrels. On the North Hill, just beyond the Territorial Prison, is a modest elderberry plant that has been covered with black fruit for weeks. The cedar was wings must have headed south without seeing one of their favorite treats.

The week’s rains gave us two inches of much-needed water. Our neighbors to the west were surprised with a two- to three-foot blizzard. The leaf change is coming along later than usual. The burning bush in the backyard is all lit up. This morning, the sky’s were clear and calm and the trees’ colors reflected in a mirror image on the surface of the lake. Can you feel it coming?

— Story and photos by Lee Miller

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