This Week at Hilton Pond (11-31 October 2012)—“Getting Ready For Winter”

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Posted on 7 October 2012 by Bill Hilton Jr.

As the seasons move from summer to colder weather, the plant world around us exhibits myriad ways of "getting ready for winter." When we went out to the woods "This Week at Hilton Pond" we encountered all sorts of examples and offer them as part of our photo essay for 11-31 October 2012. To view this current installment, please visit

As always we include a list of birds banded and recaptured during the period and make special note of a venerable chickadee. There are also some miscellaneous nature notes and an acknowledgement for folks who recently have become "Mist Net Sponsors" for Hilton Pond Center and Operation RubyThroat.

Happy (Fall) Nature Watching!


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Figure 1. As days shorten and the weather cools, leaves on deciduous shrubs like this Winged Sumac, Rhus copallinum, get ready for winter by shutting down water flow; subsequent loss of chlorophyll allows underlying red pigments to appear. (Photo copyright Bill Hilton Jr.)


Bill Hilton Jr. is an award-winning educator-naturalist and executive director of non-profit Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History near York, South Carolina USA, where he has banded more than 58,100 birds since 1982. He is the only scientist conducting long-term studies of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds (Archilochus colubris) on their wintering grounds in Central America. Check out his Web sites for Hilton Pond Center at and “Operation RubyThroat: the Hummingbird Project” at

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