I finally decided to replace my now very old Canon 5D Mark ii. The 5D has been a remarkable camera. It has been reliable in all the Kansas weather extremes, and I’ve dropped it more than once. This camera has been a hard worker for about 12 years. I’m trying out the Canon EOS R. While I have not been able to spend as much time with it as I would like, so far, it takes some pretty sharp pics. I can’t wait to be out more when the weather cools off a bit!
I think it has been about two years since I last saw a scissor-tailed flycatcher. Good to see them again!
We also managed very good looks at a sleeping barred owl and several deer foraging near the road.
Checked in on a nearby great blue heron rookery. They’ve moved back a bit more into the wooded area, so the pictures are not so great, but so glad to see they’re still there!
The Center for Biological Diversity’s June 15 press release cited a federal report noting more than 60 migratory bird species are in need of conservation: https://biologicaldiversity.org/w/news/press-releases/federal-report-more-than-260-migratory-bird-species-in-need-of-conservation-2021-06-15/
In the press release, you can find a link to the Excel file noting the species in trouble, and it is staggering. Think of the species in your part of the world that are regular visitors to your yard, the birds you see at area lakes, rivers, streams, and wetlands. Imagine them gone. Birds we regularly see in Kansas on this list include the American white pelican, red-headed woodpecker, common nighthawk, chimney swift, rufous hummingbird, American coot, American avocet, lesser yellowlegs, Franklin’s and Ross’s gulls, common tern, little blue heron, northern harrier, belted kingfisher, orchard oriole, scarlet tanager, rose-breasted grosbeak, painted bunting, dickcissel, and the list goes on. The last four years did so much damage. Please support conservation in any way you can.
It was cooler and cloudy this morning, but just a few sprinkles. Many of the paths were covered with water, but I decided to risk walking through it. I’m glad I did!
Many egrets and a great blue heron!
I think the smaller one is a juvenile little blue heron.
Frolicking muskrat youth. I counted five, but I only see four in this pic.
There were many egrets, herons, and others at the wetlands this morning. I have trouble identifying all the little peeps, but I think this bigger one is a greater yellow-legs.
I am loving the crisp mornings we’ve had the last few days. The tree swallows are here in abundance now; pied-billed grebes are popping up in all the ponds and marshes; the wood ducks are in the owl box; herons are dancing around everywhere. The moon is full and glorious.
Finally, I am getting around to getting out to the Wetlands a bit more regularly. I always look forward to cold mornings when there are just a few humans on the paths. We nod at each other and sometimes share our stories of who we have been seeing. It is a kind of quiet community, and I would venture to say, one that brings some peace to many of us worrying about the current state of things. While we may not know what is coming, one thing I am sure about is my commitment to keep sharing and hoping more humans pay attention. Click on pictures to enlarge.
Not a great a picture, but I wanted to share this because I think this bald eagle couple might be contemplating a nest here. This would be a wonderful addition to the wetlands, and it looks like good real estate!
Northern Harrier trying to outmaneuver a group of sandpipers and a killdeer. They got away.
Deer and coyotes.
Bluebirds, goldfinches, and herons, oh my.
It is that time of year again when I have trouble staying at my desk and getting my work done. The number of migrants at the Wakarusa Wetlands has been astounding. And, of course, the year-round residents like the deer and bald eagles are always a pleasure to see. Click on pictures to enlarge.
The Wakarusa (Baker) Wetlands are the place for egrets and herons at this time of year. Click on pictures to enlarge.
Click on pictures to enlarge.