Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Reading Lessons

How do you read the following pictures? What's the story in each one?
When you've finished reading, there are some possible answers at the bottom of the post for self-checking.
You're on the honor system.

Picture A (above) on the marshy edge of Hagen's Cove. Do you see a short story here?

Picture B (above) is also at Hagen's Cove in the intertidal zone. What' the story here?

Picture C (above) has a tale to tell too. What might it be?

Answers ... some possible answers, are below if you scroll down a wee bit.

Scrolling ...

Picture A: The question is, why the cluster of palms around the dead oak? The answer is birds love to eat the small seedy fruit of the sabal palm and they love to perch on any tree standing in the mainly treeless marshland. Birds being birds, plenty of seed laden feces were dropped from those perches with the resulting ring of palms.

Picture B: A fiddler crab lives here. The balls of mud are the pellets produced as the crabs process detritus and other nutrients in the mud.

Picture C: A hole in the limerock at Steinhatchee Falls. This might be the same process that happens up north where a cobble gets caught in a dip in the rock and then tumbled relentlessly by the current until it gouges out a bowl shape in the bedrock. Our limestone is a fairly soft rock so the process probably happens faster here than in places with real rocks.

Class dismissed.

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threecollie said...

This is my favorite class!

Hal at Ranch Ramblins said...

Picture A brings to mind some trees we have here. We call them cedar-oaks, because the cedars seem to have grown nearly out of the base of the oaks, appearing to be one tree from a distance. Because of your explanation, I now understand how this comes about. Thanks.

Hick said...

I wish I was in your class.

Down the road apiece are two trees intertwined. One is a pine tree and the other is an apple tree. If you don't look closely, you cannot tell that they are two trees. My kids used to be fascinated by the apples growing on the pine tree. I told them it was a pineapple tree.


roger said...

i failed. all three. though i did see palms growing around a dead tree. i don't think we have fiddler crabs on the left coast. i have seen water eroded bowls in granite all over the sierras.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

Another great science show....

robin andrea said...

Great pics for a fine lesson this morning. I should have known about the palm and oak, our birds arrange the landscape to their liking as well.

Laura said...

I'm so glad this was an "open blog" test. :)

Mrs. S said...

I'm not a nature-knowledgeable person, so when you said "what are the stories?" my brain went straight into fiction-mode.

What type of FICTION stories would you come up with for these shots, FC?

Floridacracker said...

You go to the head of the class!

Palm oaks, cedar oaks, blackcherry fence lines, ... the birds are doing their part in reforestation.

Neat. I've seen an oak growing around a palm tree.

no failures allowed. i think fiddlers are too tropical for your part of the left coast. they are found around the world in warmer climes...maybe a trip to baja would would turn some up.

...and your answers are ...?

I suppose that's another effect we may not think about when bird populations drop in an area.

I'm sure you didn't peek :)

Mrs. S,
Well, it's clear to me that the Trigorgian tractor beams have sucked the life out of the oak and now, disguised as palms, the TriG"s are huddling, planning their evil takeover of the world.

The second photo plainly shows a cave where Earth's last remaining humans are stockpiling mud balls to throw at the TriG's ... as you know, the TriG's are alergic to mud.

The last photo is actually a satellite photo of south FL after the TriG's finished their scorched earth attack. The lake in the center is Lake Okeechobee of course. Miami, West Palm, and Fort Laurderdale have been completely vaporized.
Ah well, sacrifices must be made.

Ava said...

Very enlightening post!

Floridacracker said...

Thanks Ava!

Mrs. S said...

Those were the best answers EVER!! Just so you know ;)

Hurricane Teen said...

Yay I made your blogroll! Thanks FC!
I really don't know what causes the palms to grow around other trees like that, but I have wondered....
The little dirt balls are definitely the work of a fiddler crab.
And that last picture looks like a hole in a piece of limerock...But I don't know why.

Very educational...I never really thought about the birds or how that hole got in the limerock like that. Thanks again for informing my un-enlightened mind :-D

Floridacracker said...

Mrs. S,

Hurricane Teen,
I did some blogroll cleaning and moved you from Favorites to the front page. Now ...write!
...get your school work done first tho.