As the temperature drops, I get out more. I love the crisp weather and having a walk to myself. There is still time to see migrating birds and the residents who will stick around as long as the water is not frozen. Click on pictures to enlarge.
I did not get to the Wakarusa Wetlands much over the summer, but now that we are heading into fall, I plan to do something about that whenever I can. I took a couple of hours off yesterday to see if what I had been hearing about great numbers of pelicans was true. While a road grater scared many of them away right after I got there, a few remained. It is great to see them in this relatively new space (part of the mitigation for the SLT). While I in no way can speak to the anger and betrayal felt by so many regarding this sacred space, I am choosing to focus on making peace with my relationship with this place that has meant so much to me. I hope it will continue to be a place of relative safety for the beings who live there, and I hope that migrants continue to find it a restful and nourishing spot in the fall and spring. It was wonderful to see thousands of gulls coming through high overhead and the blackbirds were dining on sunflower seeds. A few cormorants were hanging out in a tree, kingfishers patrolled, and grebes dived. Click on pictures to enlarge.
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.
This guy has been patrolling this pond that I visit occasionally. I’ve been out there a few days trying to get a decent picture, but I do not want to run him off, so I am keeping my distance. If you have never seen one doing his/her thing, it is pretty amazing. They talk a lot, hover over the water, then dive right in. Hopefully, he will hang around for a while and I can get better pictures. Click on picture to enlarge.
I watched this amazing little one hovering over the water. Kingfishers plunge in head first. Click on picture to enlarge.