Rock Flipping Day – 2012

I begin with apologies. iPhoto is still giving me fits, and though I spent a good part of yesterday at the Apple store trying to get iPhoto to behave, whatever fix they did will (may) solve the problem going forward. Any photos I took prior to yesterday are subject to the random feistiness or cooperation of iPhoto. Of course all of the photos I took for International Rock Flipping Day were taken before yesterday, so I had to use a work around that they showed me. At least, apparently, I haven’t lost any photos, though sizing them is a challenge. But you go to the blog with the photos you have.

The cricket you see above was hiding under a rock in the gravel near the cabin. It was the only live thing I found in all of my flipping. Immediately below it in the photo you can see some brown rocks. Those are stained with rust. Somewhere among them is a bit of iron pyrite. The last load of gravel the men put on the parking pad behind the cabin contained many iron pyrite pebbles, and as they’ve gotten wet over the years, they’ve rusted.

I found this old cache of acorns that some critter had hidden beneath a large rock across the lake. The rock sits at the base of a very large black oak, and there is a hole in the trunk near the rock. I suspect the critter — perhaps a red squirrel — lives in that hole and keeps a larder under the rock. These acorns looked ragged, so it may be that no one has visited the supply recently.

Above is a little experiment I’ve been conducting at Roundrock. In past years, I acquired the orange spoon and white fork you see here. I was told that they were biodegradable, and I wanted to see that in action. So I placed them under a paving stone before the cabin. This was several years ago. In fact, I think it was before I even had the cabin, so that would have to be at least three years. Before this I had screwed a similar spoon to the trunk of a tree where it would be exposed to the elements. Aside from a critter gnawing on it, the spoon showed no sign of degrading. Someone then said that it would have worked better had the spoon been buried. Hence the experiment above. Nothing seems to have happened to the spoon and the fork. Maybe I’m thinking in too short a term.

As I roamed my woods that rainy Saturday in search of likely rocks to flip, I saw another fellow out there, also flipping the occasional rock, though rooting among them seemed to be its preferred approach. The armadillo let me get quite close. It regarded me and then went about its business, nonplussed by my presences. It was small, so I guess it was too young to understand the “danger” of humans. Plus it was busy rooting out something that it devoured with haste. I think the wet weather put a lot of food within its reach that hadn’t been available through much of the summer drought.

To see these photos as well as photos by many other people who actually know what they’re doing, head over to the Flickr page devoted to flipped rocks.

6 Responses to “Rock Flipping Day – 2012”

  1. Vickie Says:

    Ah..have not seen an armadillo since the last time I was in southern mo a number of years back. Great picture. Nothing but rolly pollys under my rocks, as expected. However, in performing certain yard duties one has when one has a dog, after the storm the other day I saw a piece of glass glinting near the end of the back yard that I’m sure had not been there before as I would have picked it up to keep my dog from stepping on it. I brought it in and cleaned it off and it is a jagged piece from an old Hires root-beer bottle. Amber brown colored with the word Since in white and part of a mug with white foam and Hi on it. I believe the bottle from which it came likely may predate my birth and it has taken many years and two recent storms to bring up this small piece–a small treasure that I have not yet been able to throw away.

  2. Pete Says:

    Love that armadillo! I didn’t realize there were any of those in the Ozarks. And I appreciate the reminder, though I suspect the rocks in my backyard won’t yield anything more than earthworms, roly-polies or ants.

  3. Ontario Wanderer Says:

    The only armadillo I have ever seen was in Texas when I was on my honeymoon with my first wife. Both were exciting at the time.

    The “biodegradable” spoon and knife are a bit upsetting. I hope you are taking photos back to the people that claimed they are biodegradable.

  4. Ontario Wanderer Says:

    Re iPhoto . . . I quit using it as it kept hiding the photos and not letting me put them where I wanted to put them and also changing the dates at times. I did not upgrade to the newer iPhoto so I don’t know if this will work for you but . . .

    Go to Finder
    Right click on iPhoto Library
    Left Click on “Show Package Contents”
    Scroll down to “Originals” and Left click
    You should see dates for photos
    Left click to see the photo(s)
    You may COPY and paste them elsewhere but DO NOT erase or move them
    If you made changes on photos in iPhoto they will be under “Modified”
    Again don’t erase or move but feel free to copy & paste

    All this being said, I can do this under my name but not under my partner’s name even though we are both “administrators.” Not sure why that is the case.

    I am using iPhoto 09 version 8.1.2 and don’t know if the above will work with other versions. Good luck!

  5. Rock Flipping Day 2012 – Posts! Says:

    […] Growing with Science Blog Wild About Ants Powell River Books Blog Walking with Henslow Roundrock Journal Mainly Mongoose Random Hearts Wanderin’ Weeta Rock, Paper, Lizard. (The Interpreter) Beasts […]

  6. Judy Says:

    Likely the armadillo was eating quickly so you would not have a chance to shove him out of the way and take all the goodies for yourself…
    Iron pyrite pebbles in the gravel. That sounds interesting – you can send the kids out to prospect for gold nuggets when they are driving you mad…

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