A fine farewell to August.

What a stupendous morning in Estabrook Park. I know there is one more day of August left, but it will be hard pressed to provide a better send-off than today. Might as well just call tomorrow September 0.

The sky was clear and the air was cool, dry, and calm.

The deer were grazing on the front lawn of the Benjamin Church House.

A great blue heron was fishing in the pond.

A bunny was on the river trail.

A goldfinch was in the sumac hiding behind a stick.

A young mallard was on the river by the mudflats.

Yesterday was nice too, if a little breezy, and a slightly-roughed-up painted lady was sipping from a bull thistle blossom in the bright afternoon sun.

And a roughed-up clouded sulphur finally, if inadvertently, showed off the dark strip on the top side of its wing(s).

The one new thing I’ve spotted is this rough cocklebur or large cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium) growing on the mudflats by the river.

As always, the Pedia of Wik helpfully explains, “the plant may have some medicinal properties and has been used in traditional medicine in South Asia and traditional Chinese medicine.

However, while small quantities of parts of the mature plants may be consumed, the seeds and seedlings should not be eaten in large quantities because they contain significant concentrations of the extremely toxic chemical carboxyatratyloside. The mature plant also contains at least four other toxins.”

Probably best to leave this one alone. Instead, if you’re hungry, it looks like someone dropped a bunch of raisinets on the soccer field.

Just kidding. Don’t eat those either. The five-second rule has long expired, Silly.

Published by Andrew Dressel

Theoretical and Applied Bicycle Mechanic, and now, apparently, Amateur Naturalist. In any case, my day job is teaching mechanics at UWM.

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