Signs of Spring

There are signs of Spring popping up everyday now.  I just haven’t been able to adequately capture them.  The crab-apples have blossomed and the magnolia blossoms are achingly close to popping.  Every other tree or bush is in full bud. 

Plus, all of the birds are singing.  Every avian species’ male is singing a different tune, but using the same lyrics, “Look at me! Look at me! Look at me, baby!”  I hear a new tune everyday now.

Last week’s lows in the thirties are transitioning to today’s forecasted high in the eighties.  If we don’t make eighty today, then we should tomorrow.  It often seem to me that Spring lasts as long as it takes to flick a light switch.  One day it is still winter, the next it is summer, click.

Tomorrow is April 1st, April Fools Day.  I was going to use this news item as part of a post for Fools Day, but something better popped-up.  It is called a photonic fence and is billed as a anti-mosquito laser system.  This footage (without sound) shows a series of mosquitos literally being vaporized.  It is filmed in extremely slow motion.  The entire minute plus video represents less than a tenth of a second in realtime footage.

Intellectual Ventures Lab is the company that made the photonic fence and this video.  This system is capable of differentiating between mosquitos and other insects, such as butterflies and bees.  It can count wing beats and consequently tell the difference between male and female mosquitos.  This is one of many research projects that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has funded in its effort to stem the scourge of malaria.  You have to believe that this was more in the Bill column than in Melinda’s.  Even so, it is way cooler than the old bug zapper.

We called Dave.  He has heard from Northwestern and wasn’t accepted there for graduate school.  He has not heard yet from either Duke or Case Western.  He is also waiting to hear from Rochester on their Key program.  Anne suggested that since he was a Blue Devil in High School, that might put him in good stead to be a Blue Devil at Duke too.   Now if the Spartans happen to face the Blue Devils in the NCAA championship …

The pictures with this post are part of the treasure trove of photos that I took while Jane visited us. 

  • The Black and White Ruffled Lemar was at the zoo.  The blue basket ball is part of the zoo’s stimulus plan for lemurs.  Getting the treats out of the ball, stimulates the lemur.  I happened upon the inauguration of this program last Christmas break.
  • The orchids are from the botanical garden’s orchid show.  In my never-ending struggle to feed this blog, I visited this year’s orchid show three times.  I probably got enough pictures of orchids to last a lifetime.
  • This Spirit of Saint Louis is at the Missouri History Museum.  It is a replica, the original is in the Smithsonian.  It was built shortly after Lindbergh successfully made his flight.  So it is almost as old as the original, but it doesn’t have all the original’s mileage.  Such a deal!  What would it take for you to fly it off this lot?

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