Ask A Fairy: Spring 2022 Answers!
After a lengthy stay on North Country trails and in our backyards, our favorite naturalist fairies decided to continue north for the rest of the summer. But, before they left they made sure to write back to all of your wonderful nature questions! They wanted us to tell you that they loved answering your questions, and they hope you keep exploring and being curious about all the wonderful things around us. Read on to hear what they have to say!
Lauryn Tripp, 9, What’s the fairy’s name that lives here?
Hi Lauryn! Our names are Blossom Dewdrop and Thimble Hickory.
Avery, 8, If you could make a wish what would your wish be?
Hi Avery! If we could wish for anything, it would be for everyone reading this to have happiness, adventure, and some of our favorite pine needle tea. What would you wish for?
Trevor, 19, What’s the best way for me to see owls?
Good question, Trevor! Owls are most active at dusk and nighttime in wooded areas. They can be tricky to spot, so we’d suggest listening for their calls in order to locate them. You can even try playing owl calls to see if any respond! There are a variety of owl types you might see or hear in this area: Barred Owls, Barn Owls, Great-horned Owls, Northern Saw-whet Owls, or Eastern Screech Owls. Good luck!
Leslie N. Russek - lrussek, Old, How many types of edible mushrooms are there in the North Country?
Hi Leslie, great question! We haven’t been able to try all of them, so we’re not sure exactly how many edible mushrooms there are in the North Country. But, some of our favorites are chicken-of-the-woods, hen-of-the-woods, or giant puffballs - we get our squirrel friends to help move the puffballs! We also love to snack on golden chanterelle’s when we find them. Before we eat any mushroom, we always make sure we’re 200% positive that it’s the right one - we don’t like the feeling of being sick from eating a bad mushroom. Hope that helps!
Charlie, 60 people years old, Is there a pot of gold as in money or goodness/happiness??
Hi Charlie, thanks for your question! The pot of gold changes from person to person, but it’s very rarely money. More often it’s joy, goodness, and love!
Josephine McGrath, 3, Do you have any daffodils?
Hi Josephine! Yes, I have lots of daffodils when they flower in the spring. I sometimes like to take the smaller ones and wear them as fancy hats. The insides of the daffodil also make for the perfect bowl for carrying water or baking a cake!
Aileen, 51, What’s the difference between a toad and a frog?
That’s a great question Aileen! Toads are actually a type of frog, and one of the biggest differences between toads and frogs is that toads have short hind legs, and frogs have really long ones. This is what allows frogs to jump so high and quick, and is also why toads tend to hobble around more and move slower. So many of my friends are frogs and toads, but sometimes I have to remember to keep my hands to myself around my toad friends, as their little bumpy warts sometimes make me itchy!
Megan, 32, Do you fairies sleep at night?
Yes! Just like you, we sleep at night! Sometimes I’ll stay up late to look at the moon or spend time with my nocturnal friends like the bats, but I generally like to be outside during the day. Some fairies prefer to be awake all night or take more naps during the day, so it’s really up to a personal preference. But I like to gather my food and play games when it's light out and easier to see!
Adi, 13, How come you’re not here?
Hi Adi, I’m sorry I missed you! The summer days are really busy for us fairies, as we have a lot of foraging and winter preparation to do, but it’s also the best time of the year to play outside! Most summer days my friends and I venture deep into the woods to find a nice stream to float in, or a black walnut to play volleyball with. We love to play outside all day, and often venture far from our homes to explore!
James, 41, What types of bees are native to the North Country?
I love bees! New York state has about 450 bee species. Most of them nest in the ground, making a lot of my neighbors here on the forest floor bees or close friends of bees! Some different types of bees include snail shell nesters, resin bees, wood nesters, stem nesters, cleptoparasites, social cavity nesters, solitary ground nesters, and solitary cavity nesters. Most bees in New York are solitary, meaning they live by themselves and don’t necessarily associate with a hive. Phew! That's a lot of different types of bees. We're lucky to have such diversity!
Mary, 7, Do you have a favorite animal?
Hi Mary, what a fun question. My favorite animal is definitely a field mouse. Field mice are so kind and quick. They love to play hide and seek with fairies and they are very good at finding the best hiding places. My best friend is a field mouse named Poppy! She and I go on a lot of adventures together in the woods.
Isabel, 5, Do you get cold in the winter?
Hello Isabel, what an awesome question. Thimble and I are woodland fairies so we do get cold in the winter, but don’t worry we stay toasty by flying down to warmer forests (which is called migrating, just like geese and other birds) where we can continue to explore. Some fairies don’t get cold, they prefer the winter months. These fairies paint the frost on the grasses in autumn and freeze the lakes and rivers during the winters.
Ellie, 23, How are moth and butterfly wings different? How do bird nests in trees keep their shape? What parts of a mushroom do fairies use?
Hello Ellie! You've asked so many great questions.
One way to tell the difference between moth wings and butterfly wings is that moth wings are usually brown, beige, or white, while butterflies often have bright colorful patterned wings. Moths also rest their wings open, but butterflies rest their wings pointed up to the sky. Keep an eye out for their wing placement!
To your second question: birds use many different materials to make their nests. They use twigs and mosses as well as pine needles. These materials are the foundation that keep the nests together and keep the birdies warm. Robins build their nest with twigs, grass, and some mud to help keep the nest sturdy and use their wings and beak to push everything together.
Finally, fairies like to use all parts of our mushroom friends. Sometimes we hide under mushroom caps and gills when it is raining and we don't want our wings to get wet. We also sometimes use the stem in fairy soups and potions. My favorite part of the mushroom is the cap because I like to bounce on the top of mushrooms like a trampoline! Keep being curious!
Susie, 7, How do you fly so far?
Hi Susie, what a great question! I love to fly and my wings are strong just like your muscles. They let me fly far distances and soar above the trees with the birds. The secret ingredient to fairy flight is pixie dust! Pixie dust helps our wings stay strong and protects us against things like wind and rain.