Friday -- December 3, 2004
Water Level at Little Falls: 5.5     Water Temperature: 45

I had an encounter with a FLYING SQUIRREL. I stepped out my front door to sweep the front walk last evening when I heard some rustling in the leaves. I turned to look and saw what I thought was a wood rat leap up onto the silver maple at the bottom of the steps. I ran to the other side of the tree to try and catch another glimpse and found the little creature clinging to the tree just three feet from the ground and right in front of me. To my surprise it didn't scurry away and I was able to get a positive I.D. The squirrel was so cute with its large eyes and its tiny nose whiffing the air, it reminded me of a koala. It had a dark stripe down its side where its air-catching fur was bunched up between it front and back paws and a flat, non-bushy tail. I ram to get the kids and when we returned the squirrel was gone. Looking back I realized that I must have seen one on Monday night as well. I was leaving for my class when I saw what I thought was a wood pecker and I remember thinking to myself that it was very late for a bird to be scrambling around in the trees. As it turns out it was probably our resident, nocturnal flying squirrel. Flying squirrels are not rare and I had suspected that they might be on the island but to see one up close like I did is extremely rare and I feel fortunate to have seen one.

Friday -- December 11, 2004
Water Level at Little Falls: 4.8     Water Temperature: 45

I watched two yellow-bellied sap suckers yesterday as they busily gleened the trees for insects outside my window. There were crows on the island yesterday as well.

The beaver have been especially ravenous this season. Many of the saplings between the ferry landing and the house have been removed and carried to the Maryland shore. The beavers have a den there next to the ferry landing and there you can find the newly harvested trees piled up in the water next to the entrance of the den. I tried to keep them away by leaving the outdoor lights on but it doesn't seem to hinder them in the least.

The river level is on it's way up again and is expected to reach six and a half feet by the end of tommorrow.

Monday -- December 13, 2004
Water Level at Little Falls: 6.2     Water Temperature: 45

It was another high-water weekend and we've had to use a canoe to get back and forth to the island. It hasn't been too bad even when we had to use the canoe to bring over the christmas tree. Today the wind is blowing pretty good which is going to make the river crossing more of a pain.

A young bald eagle soared overhead as we waited for the bus this morning.

Wednesday -- December 15, 2004
Water Level at Little Falls: 5.3     Water Temperature: 41

I drained all the toilets and shut off the water to the club house and just in time too, it's cold out there!

There will be a substitute caretaker here on Sunday. I'm going to the White Mountains this weekend. We hope to climb Mount Washington. It will probably be cold up there too.

Thursday -- December 23, 2004
Water Level at Little Falls: 3.96     Water Temperature: 35

I'm sorry I haven't written in the daily log for a week, I guess I've been busy with X-mas and everything, and there really isn't much to report about. I returned from my weekend in the White Mountains to find the pipes to the well frozen but luckily managed to get them thawed out without too much trouble.

Monday -- December 27, 2004
Water Level at Little Falls: 4.2     Water Temperature: 34

It's a sunny day here on the island but there is a stiff breeze blowing down river pushing the frigid air though the cracks in my walls and floors. I have to keep the access panel to the water heater open to prevent the pipes from freezing. The beaver are still busy cutting down any young trees that aren't protected with chicken wire but other than that I haven't noticed much wildlife recently.