Plants continue to flower…Fringe Tree, some azaleas still in bloom, numerous coreopsis, spiderwort, walking Iris, petunia, roses…the rudbeckia is close to bloom. Thunbergia, Honesuckle and Confederate Jasmine in bloom by the 18th of the month. Wildflowers blooming along the highway to include Mullein. This year’s oaks continue to have an abundant leaf drop and are still in the process of putting on their new leaves. Wisteria is finishing up blooming and our dogwood had a nice bloom in early April. Also in early April the leaves of Pecan trees were budding out.
Deer are still seen along the side of the roads and an occasional turkey. Hemingway is still around fishing in the pond. Haven’t seen any gators recently. Small lubbers are everywhere and easily killed in the early morning and evenings. Bullfrogs sound strong, whip-poor-wills heard in the morning along with the now yearly call of the Sandhill Cranes out in the prairie. Owls and hawks are also a continued part of the day and evening homestead wildlife. Armadillo activity is starting to pick up. Mosquitos are prevalent in early morning and evening. Had the first sign of Deer Fly on the last day of April (’16) in late evening. Dragonflies are becoming active. Several Geese are heard on the lake once again.
April Celestial Observations…
April 16 – New Moon. The Moon will located on the same side of the Earth as the Sun and will not be visible in the night sky.
April 22, 23 – Lyrids Meteor Shower. The Lyrids is an average shower, usually producing about 20 meteors per hour at its peak.
April 29 – The planet Mercury reaches greatest western elongation of 27 degrees from the Sun. This is the best time to view Mercury since it will be at its highest point above the horizon in the morning sky. Look for the planet low in the eastern sky just before sunrise.
April 30 – Full Moon. The Moon will be located on the opposite side of the Earth as the Sun and its face will be will be fully illuminated. This phase occurs at 00:58 UTC. This full moon was known by early Native American tribes as the Full Pink Moon because it marked the appearance of the moss pink, or wild ground phlox, which is one of the first spring flowers. This moon has also been known as the Sprouting Grass Moon, the Growing Moon, and the Egg Moon. Many coastal tribes called it the Full Fish Moon because this was the time that the shad swam upstream to spawn.
Orion continues to move from East to West throughout the course of the night.