I'm disappointed to not be offering a very different image here. On our first break yesterday, we discovered we were being watched. A fledgling great horned owl was perched across the creek, taking in the strange activity. It was at the stage where it had a dark mask of mature feathers across its face. It would have made a fantastic image, if only I hadn't neglected to bring a telephoto lens.
Black maple, and many other trees take advantage of their stature. They are wind pollinated. Most of our important trees, maples, oaks, hickories, walnuts, willows, poplars and elms among them, have evolved to use the wind. They all have somewhat unappealing flowers with little or no petals, and stamens that project, or in this case dangle, into the air.