Cemeteries: Full of life January 11, 2008
You might not consider a cemetery a place you would normally go to look for life. Interestingly enough, many cemeteries are veritable safe havens for plants and wildlife. They are often an island of peace and refuge in urban areas; the inhabitants of small county cemeteries seem to thrive on the neglect.
Consider this small plot found well off the beaten path, down a long country lane, secluded amongst white pines. I could hardly contain my excitement. Those pines and the gigantic arborvitae found within this plot are a premiere location for owls. When it comes to finding owls, I am not even picky. Long-eared owls, Saw-whet Owls, Barred or Horned, it is all good! Another surprising feature of this hidden lot, is its proximity to the Mansfield airport. And while the interred cemetery residents don't complain about the overhead traffic or background noise, some owls are known for their attraction to large grassy landing-strips. This is definitely a place to bring a posse and start scouting for owls.
Another feature of this none too-frequented locale, was the robust crop of poison ivy berries festooning the fence ( in the rear of the photo). It was a magnificent sight for those of us not inclined toward the itch and scratch. Several lively Black-capped Chickadees were feasting like there would be no tomorrow. Maybe living within this hollowed ground inspired their zest for life, or perhaps it was just the easy pickings. Obviously, the fence is intended to keep out people, who I hear, are just dying to get in....