I am in love with this belted kingfisher. I have seen her before patrolling up and down the spillway at Clinton Lake. This morning was the first time I have ever been close enough to get a decent picture. I love the sounds she makes and her head-first dives into the water. And, of course, how remarkably cool she looks. Click on pictures to enlarge.
Now that the ice is melting, we’re seeing many more great blue herons along the shore line. This poor fish is nearly as big as the heron. I thought she might not be able to take off, but she managed just fine. Click on pictures to enlarge.
Every winter, as long as there is open water, there are a few pelicans who stay around. I don’t know how they do it. I am not sure how they managed the polar vortex. I am in awe of their pelicanness. Click on pictures to enlarge.
I have not been to the Wakarusa Wetlands as much as I would like over the last few weeks, but I am not sure that is a bad thing. My walk there on Monday was on one of those five degree mornings. The sparrows were moving about in the long grass, but not coming out in the open much. I saw a few hawks and a bald eagle made a quick pass high overhead, but I did not see any mammals. No beavers. No deer. No coyotes. I have not seen a mink in months. The noise and the ever-growing gash made by this equipment are changing the land in ways we will never fully understand.
Construction closures: http://www.ksdot.org/topekametro/laneclose.asp
Wetlands Preservation Organization: https://www.facebook.com/wetlandspreservationorganization
Voices of the Wakarusa Wetlands: https://www.facebook.com/voicesofthewakarusawetlands
Occupy the Wakarusa Wetlands: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Occupy-the-Wakarusa-Wetlands/1380914642133457