Discovering Nature

Summer Falls

This is a 3/4 mile walk along a gorge, but that short span includes something like a 600 foot rise in elevation. We climbed a lot of stairs, then walked down the other side on a more gradual trail. It was an absolutely lovely day.

Bob-o-link field

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This field invited us to stop the car and try to capture the scene. The field was filled with bob-o-links making their strange, R2D2 racket.IMG_3034sm

Interior decoration

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She was gathering bark for the nest but dropped it to scream. Yes, I felt badly… even though we were actually passing by at a good clip and did not stop to stare or harrass her.

Bright Back Yard

The male goldfinches are glorious when they brighten up after their winter drabness.

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I fear my camera was damaged when it tipped over and hit the ground at a polo match over the winter. It doesn’t focus sharply when I try to zoom in on the beautiful spring birds. I’m not sure where to take it for repair.

Here are a few more bright fellows back in time for our chilly spring:

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Indigo buntings come through this time of year, but they have never stayed before. Who knows? Maybe this year they will.

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The rose-breasted grosbeak is always a favorite. We have three pairs of them battling over the feeder.

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Orioles are beautiful, conversational singers. I’ve read that grape jelly in a hummingbird feeder will bring them in. We’re using our feeder for the hummers, as we have three ruby throats — a male and two females — depending on it. But maybe I can find a way to rig up a feeder for orioles, too.

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Tree Swallows

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If only I could capture these amazing fliers in action… They are too quick for me, so I settle for shots of them looking pensive.

Vernal pool vitality

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It seems to take no time at all for these frog’s eggs to develop. Here’s a proud and strangely happy looking mother frog.

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Chipmunks

These little guys are so fearful of being seen. If only they could be quieter, they’d have better success. But first it’s the chipping out of vocal warnings from their roosts, and then it’s the frantic scrabble of little claws on bark that gives them away.

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Protective mother

This leucistic redtail has been sitting on her nest for some weeks, and now she appears to be feeding young.

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Instead of being nestled down into the nest, we see her sitting more erect, as she is in this picture. Often she’s on the edge of the nest, peering down, probably giving tiny bites to tiny beaks.

It’s interesting to see the fresh greens she has apparently added to the nest. I know Big Red did the same thing in the Cornell hawk nest we observed a few years ago too, though I’m not sure what the purpose is.

It’s been awhile since I’ve seen the male, so I hope he’s all right. At this stage, there’s plenty for both parents to do.

Spring flowers

Gaywing

Gaywing

Trillium

Trillium

Rue Anemone

Rue Anemone

Violet

Violet

Coltsfoot

Coltsfoot

Trout Lily

Trout Lily

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