I have seen a Red-tailed Hawk both flying and perched in treetops in the area of Griffin's Ridge. On February sixth, I was able to run home, grab a camera, and get back down to where the hawk was sitting. The first photo is a bit blurry as I just wanted to get a picture and positive i.d. before it flew off.
Saturday, February 10, 2018
Saturday, February 3, 2018
Tuesday, January 9, 2018
Thirty-eight degrees feels balmy after the arctic cold that we've endured since after Christmas through the first week of the new year. My dog, Jamis, refuses to leave the house in booties and a coat, so we haven't gotten farther than the yard in quite awhile. Today we ventured out and walked through the woods and south along the Zim Smith trail. I could take my gloves off to take a few pictures without worrying about frostbite! I had Green Hour at the Round Lake Library today and I read a book with the children about animals that live under the snow in the winter. There are signs in the Peck Avenue woods of the Red Squirrel. It looks like they have made some underground hide-outs there. If you walk straight back to a bit before the stream, you can see some small holes. Colin S., who was at the program today, worried about how the squirrels would find food. There are cones on top of the snow and squirrels will also dig down to find edibles like hickory nuts. There is also the Peterson's bird feeder, which I have seen a Red Squirrel sitting in and dining from. The children made a beautiful ice feeder today, filled with fruit, seeds, and nuts for the birds and, of course, squirrels! It is hanging in the Children's Garden behind the library. Hope to see you out and about. Happy New Year!!!
|Snow-capped Nest in Peck Avenue Woods|
|Another Nest with Tissues Incorporated Into It|
|Gnawed Tree Trunk|
|Red Squirrel Hide-out|
|Another Entrance to Red Squirrel Abode|
|Pine Cones are Super Abundant This Season|
|Ice Feeder with Fruits, Nuts, and Seeds|
On December fourteenth it was a cold morning. It was ten degrees. Little did I know that in a couple of weeks we would be dealing with wind chills below zero and daytime temperatures in the single digits. This December morning, I glanced out my glass kitchen door to look at my bird feeders. There on a suet cage, sat a male Northern Flicker. I stopped to watch him. There he sat. Minute after minute went by and he continued to just hang-out. Finally, after ten minutes, he began to eat. Enter a Blue Jay. A Noisy one. The flicker didn't budge. The jay left but wait... he came back. Now both suet cages were occupied by woodpeckers and the jay voiced his dismay loudly. Neither woodpecker looked up from breakfast. The jay vocally carried on but then stopped. It realized pieces of suet were dropping on the ground. It dove down to eat its own breakfast. The photos are taken through the glass door so as not to disturb the birds and because it was cold. Ha! Note the yellow under the flicker's tail. There's yellow under the wings too. We have the yellow-shafted group in our area. There is a red-shafted group elsewhere.
|Male Northern Flicker|
|Finally Starts Eating|
|Enter: Noisy Blue Jay|
|With Suet in its Bill, Flicker Gives Jay a Dirty Look When Jay Leaves|
|But Wait! Jay is Back|
|Jay Dives for Suet Pieces on Ground|
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
November's weather was uneventful with just a dusting of snow on the twentieth and some roller coaster temperatures through the second half of the month. I got out on the twenty-ninth to take a nature walk and got no farther than the access road to Griffin's Ridge. This is a great little birding hot spot. The stream is on either side of the road. Pat's old farm field has a good number of trees with nesting cavities and winter roosts, for birds, squirrels and raccoons, as well as, being surrounded by mature white pines. The pines are a great cover for wildlife and a food source. An apple tree in the field still had apples and is a place deer can be seen from time to time. This day, House Finches were in the tree. A Northern Flicker was looking for insects in tree cavities and under bark right along the road. Thanks to Florence Cruz and her bluebird box, which hosts two broods a summer, I saw four Bluebirds flitting around in the trees. A Dark-eyed Junco struck a pose in the field. A couple of White-breasted Nuthatches, Goldfinches, Black-capped Chickadees, and a Red-bellied Woodpecker were all spotted down there. I have also seen a Red-tailed Hawk in this area flying and perched. The Great Horned Owl, which many of us are hearing at night, seems to be both on Mount Morris and closer to this field and Griffin's Ridge this season. Let me know what you see and hear when you're out and about!
|Access Road to Griffin's Ridge|
|Pat's Old Farm Field|
|White Pines in Background|
|Great Nesting/Roosting Holes|
|Male Northern Flicker Looking for Insects. Note the Black Moustache|
|Northern Flicker Back View|
|Two Male Eastern Bluebirds|
|Male Eastern Bluebird|
|Male Dark-eyed Junco|
Saturday, November 11, 2017
I had a great run with my pepper and tomato plants up until a couple of days ago when they finally got zapped by frost and a twenty-six degree morning. On November ninth the whole village was covered in frost and the lake was totally fogged over. I had picked peppers and green tomatoes the night before and didn't bother to cover the beds with sheets this time. I brought pots of herbs into the kitchen and discovered my dog likes parsley as I found him nibbling on it. Flowers in neighbors' gardens were doing well too but the party is over for us gardeners. Time to think of what pies we'll have at Thanksgiving and when the first snow will fall.
|November Peppers and New Flowers|
|Even Turning Red and It's November|
|Found This Zuke Hiding Under Leaf Litter|
|Cullinan's Roses Going Strong|
|Dee's Morning Glories|
|A Pink Boar Tomato in November Sunshine|
|Foggy Morning at Round Lake|
|Frosted Montauk Daisy on November Ninth|
|Even Spider Webs Got Frosted|