Sometimes, I just have to wonder. The butterfly and bird- frequented puddle at the ‘quarry’ down the road, which I mentioned in this post, is obviously a spring-fed puddle. It’s there year round, rain or not. There are springs and hidden streams very near – on a quiet day you can hear them bubbling under the rocks. The cave opening in the quarry wall has enlarged itself many times over due to running water. This puddle is not in anyone’s driveway, not where it can interfere with the comings and goings of Man. It IS a puddle where I’ve spent literally hours, observing literally hundreds of butterflies and birds around it and in it, drinking and bathing.
Well – the highway dept. came through a few weeks ago and patched the potholes in the road, even repaving a section that was particularly bad. Very nice. But did they have to put that last bit of leftover blacktop in this spring-fed puddle? Really?
Of course, it may not matter in the long run that the puddle is now contaminated with tar. Last spring, the power company came through and cleared and cut the vegetation under the power lines. Understood – this is a necessary thing, and it keeps my power on during a storm. But, they did this in May and June, at the height of the breeding season. I can’t even imagine how many bird nests and young were destroyed. They also trimmed the lines along the road just down from the spring, which were thick with milkweed, butterfly weed, and black-eyed Susans. Not one plant survived to bloom last summer, and there weren’t many butterflies to be seen either. One can only hope that the plants will recover and bloom this summer.
And this, mind you, takes place in a national forest.
I do think I will pay the ranger station a visit….