Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Quiet Morning

Waking up early, I was motivated by the pretty sunrise, and the moon setting in the early morning light to get up and get going.  The weather is supposed to be poor the next couple days, so I high tailed it to GMNWR to see what was up.

Strapping on my cross country skis, I was soon skiing up the old railroad bed.  The only noise was the sound of my skis.  It was a quiet morning.  There were no signs of life at last year's screech owl nest, no woodpeckers on the Timber Trail, and only a few chickadees chattering way off in the distance.  As I neared the impoundment, I could hear several crows mobbing a hawk off in the woods, but there was still nothing to see.

Skiing around the impoundment, there were signs of mammal life - fresh rabbit and coyote tracks, probably some others that I didn't recognize too, but no mammals.  There was the occasional sparrow or chickadee to photograph, but nothing special.  So I entertained myself photographing the cat tails beaten down by the wind and decorated with snow.  



Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Nearing the holt, I started to encounter some photogenic downey woodpeckers in the trees.  Continuing on, there was one very determined (and probably hungry) chickadee working over the cat tails.



Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Since the sun was warm, rather than returning to parking lot, I followed the path along the upper impoundment.  Boy am I glad I did!

As I approached the bench I noticed small birds flying around.  So when I got there I just stopped and sat.  After a while they started to return.  Boy was I glad they did.  Six to eight Eastern Bluebirds returned to feast upon the Winterberries.  Once they got used to my presence, they were more interested in eating that worrying about me and my camera.


Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

Light Chronicle | Photography: GM20110120 &emdash;

2 comments:

  1. Bluebirds are feeding on winterberry. I've read that the chickadees feed on the cattail moths who are feeding on cattail seed all winter. The moths tread silk throughout the spike. Infested spikes fluff out and droop from the stem. They look much grayer and weatherbeaten than uninfested spikes. Might be a good photo op.

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  2. Your lovely, intimate images really convey the gentleness of that morning. Really happy to share your bluebird experience through these...great shots! I noticed this morning that bush is now bare, but I did see one bluebird standing on the river ice for a little drink in the open water.

    Alan, good to know more about the cattail moth. I read about it this summer, but couldn't find info about distinguishing moth inhabited cattails from all the other fluffy ones.

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