I was out looking for wildlife - bears and otters on my mind. Stopped for a minute, and noticed a group of these spinners being lit from behind by the low morning sun. They were brilliant! I looked around to find a pair that had an uncluttered background way behind, so it would be way out of focus. Not competing with the spinners. And had the good fortune of no wind - not common out here. Not at all what I had in mind to photograph yesterday! But often these little gifts whisper to me if I slow down and listen.
Backlit by the early morning sun, these maple seeds begged my attention. Formally called samaras, are also referred to as spinners, helicopters, ‘copters, whirligigs, whirlybirds, and twisters. When they fall, they spin and stay aloft, floating out from under the wide canopy of their tree, where they have a greater chance to germinate and produce a healthy tree. These are early April specimens from swampy Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge in eastern North Carolina. The seeds inside the pod are edible.
April 10th, 2021
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