Sunday, April 7, 2013

Yes, I know. It's Spring...finally.

 "Who am I?"

Spring...I shouldn't say that too never know what Mother Nature will bring tomorrow! For the mean time, nature has sproinged its spring and we are back out into the fresh air amongst the birds and buds.

To celebrate this warmish day, we went to one of our favorite birdy places, Sandy Ridge Reservation. This area was originally a wetland drained to become fertile farm land, then changed back to a wetland in 1999. There are an amazing amount of ducks to be found during migration, a Bald Eagle and a Great Horned Owl nest here and one this is one of the easiest spots to see Sand Hill Cranes in our area.

Now all I need are a few of those warbly things...

 This is the pond that is used for geothermal heating and cooling as well as waste water treatment for the 
Johnson Wetland Center. 
Plus it's a nice place to see ducks...

 ...and Midland Painted Turtles.

 Hey look everybody! It's The Doodles!
Hi Doodles, I see you!

 If you had the new "Crossley Guide to Raptors" you would know that this is a Red-tailed Hawk.
Plus it has a red tail...

 Yep, that's a Bald Eagle sitting on the nest!
Unfortunately, there is an encroaching housing development about fifty feet behind this tree.
Empty and unsold home everywhere and they have to build more right here..duh. ranting today.

 One day I'll get an in focus shot of a Tree Swallow in flight.
Actually, one of these days I'll get an in focus shot...period.

 Very soggy woodlands!
The sounds of frogs can be deafening in the spring.

 Oh! Look at the cute fuzzy baby...that will soon grow up to terrorize all the little furry creatures in the woods!

 This is looking towards the woodland area from a viewing mound in the middle of the wetlands.
This is where The Doodles saw a Pectoral Sandpiper.
I looked and looked and couldn't find it until it took off and then disappeared...
Next time...

 Did you guess who was in the first photo?
Yep, it was a Pileated Woodpecker.
 Check closely around these trees! 
In the water many ducks and Green Herons hide and you can sometimes find Red-headed Woodpeckers in the trees.
 Speaking of ducks...It's a Blue-winged Teal.

 While watching the Teals work through the muck and mire...I spotted someone else preening in the grass.
 When I looked closer...there were TWO!
 Yipes! Snipes! Wilson's Snipes are regular nesters in the area towards the back of the wetlands.
We've also seen Sora and Virginia Rails in the past.

 So at last, I can say "Happy Spring!"


  1. You had an awesome outing! Thanks for sharing it with us. We had a night of snow and I'm sure it will get to you in a few days.

  2. I love our nearby wetlands. So much is happening there. I have been so busy clearing up my yard, recuperating from travel and now doing some volunteer work, I hope soon to have time for more hiking and walking and photography.

    1. Walking in nature is much better than working!

  3. Hi Dave, I've just discovered your lovely blog via Kelly's Red and the Peanut. You made me smile.....lots! (-: I'll be back......

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