As I wandered up the Dike Path I encountered a sizable snapping turtle on the bank. Observing it for a while, I realized that it was a female laying eggs and burying them in the sandy soil. Turtles nesting is the first theme for the day. Later I encountered another Snapping Turtle and a Painted Turtle each digging nests along the banks of the impoundments. Unfortunately, each chose a nesting location near plants, that made it impossible to get unobstructed views of the turtle and their nest.
Backfilling the Nest
Mom's job is done, The babies will fend for themselves
Also prevalent around the refuge is the Swamp Iris. This pretty yellow plant, is not native to North America, and is an invasive plant to the refuge. It can be found in clumps ranging from the water in the impoundments to the swamping banks of the river. While photographing the Swamp Iris, I noticed my first Damselflies of the year. Unfortunately, after waiting a while, the two Damselfiles still had not found each other, so I moved on.
At the far side of the refuge, I checked up on the Tree Swallows I had seen earlier. They have started to started to nest, but I can not tell if they've laid eggs yet. While I wait for the appearance of young, I will have to amuse myself with photographing them visiting the nest hole.