October is autumn in its glory.  September’s warmth is fading fast, and those long sunny days of summer are a memory now, chased away by colder breezes and stormfronts.  The first frost of the season happened this morning.  Change is the big theme of the month.

Autumn migrants are still heading south.  You’ll typically see more sparrows than warblers.

Be on the lookout for a particular caterpillar this month.  They can be locally plentiful on the roads.  I was riding in a friend’s car recently, and he was swerving to miss them as we drove the backroads.

Wildflowers have peaked, and are starting to decline as winter draws closer.  Not much besides Asters and a few hardy Goldenrod are hanging on for now- things are turning shades of tan and brown as the month progresses.

Leaves are at their most colorful as trees stop producing food from sunlight and start to go dormant, living off of summer’s accumulated nutrients.  More on that next week.  The woods are big evidence of change this season.

This month takes us decisively out of summer’s influence.  Nature’s colors herald big changes to come.