Monday, March 18, 2013

A Confusing Season

It is that strange transitional season at Great Meadows. Winter is slowly loosing its grip, but is not going out without a struggle. Spring has sent the advance team, but has not yet arrived.

There are large patches of wide open water on the impoundments, but the edges and along the river are still surrounded with ice.  The water levels are high and constantly fluctuating as the storms fill the Concord river which overflows its banks filling the impoundments.

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Muskrats flooded out of their lodge

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In spite of temperatures in the teens and another snow storm on the way, a wide ranging collection of waterfowl can be found at the refuge. This week's census identified:
  • Canada Geese
  • Wood Duck
  • American Wigeon
  • Mallard
  • Northern Shoveler
  • Green-winged Teal
  • Ring-necked Ducks
  • Bufflehead
  • Common Goldeneye
  • Hooded Merganser
I managed to capture some record shots of a few of the less common visitors.

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American Wigeon moves on 
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Northern Shoveler exploring along the river 
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Startled Northern Shoveler takes flight Light Chronicle: GM20130318 &emdash;
Male Hooded Merganser

Along the Dike Trail you will be greeting by returning migratory birds including
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Red-winged Blackbirds
On such a cold morning, you find yourself jealous when you encounter an animal that has found a protected spot out of the wind, relaxing and soak up the sun, while waiting for spring to make its arrival.

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