Saturday, April 12, 2014

Signs of Spring

While I'm out chasing sinkholes, disappearing streams and the ephemeral waterfall, spring is arriving fast.  I've always felt that the morning chorus of birdsong is the real mark of spring, and it's here - at least a dozen species echoing through the trees as I walked the dog this morning.  It's a challenge to sort out the songs in my mind, but one year I did listen to bird tapes, so I can recognize a lot of them.

This Great  Blue Heron was standing at the edge of a farm pond when I drove by yesterday.  I've been inspired by some of the other bloggers I read (you know who you are), who feature great bird pictures, so I'm going to try and do that more this year.

I'm using my wife's camera with a longer digital zoom for the bird pictures, and it seems to work well.  Here the heron flew almost as soon as I stopped the car, and I only had time to put the camera on 'sports' setting, and snap away, but this picture turned out ok.

The doves are nesting under our eave as always; they started this nest at least two weeks ago, when the ground was still totally snow-covered.  I hear them cooing as I sit inside the house reading the other blogs I follow and enjoying my morning coffee..

This morning I heard my first Song Sparrow, so I stopped and looked around til I spotted it high in a tree.  I've also heard the Cardinal and Flickers recentlly.  I usually hear birds before I see them, and I always carry binoculars on my walks at this time of year.

We headed out for Saturday breakfast (destination a fabric shop), driving across the causeway at Lake Eugenia on the way.  The Osprey are back!  Two were sitting on the nest, but one had left by the time I got the picture.

And the chipmunks have been visiting the deck, cleaning up under the winter birdfeeders.  This guy's cheeks are stuffed to bursting!

With all these 'critter' photos, I'm linking to:
http://viewingnaturewitheileen.blogspot.ca/

17 comments:

  1. A great capture and observations, they ice in the background shows cold temperatures.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wonderful variety of birds. It is great to see the Ospreys return to their nest. Love the sweet dove shot. Thank you for linking up with the critter party. Have a happy weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Fine captures. We've seen the great blue do a couple of flybys recently but there's not a lot of open water here yet. Soon.. he's one of my favourite birds.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Nice heron shot! And I love your little chubby chipmunk. :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. That's a halfway decent looking nest for a dove. I also heard the first song sparrow yesterday, and I always love Chipmunks!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I always get excited when I see a heron. I must remember to look up for those ospreys, though! Cute chipmunk. I tired to get a couple of shots of one this morning, but they were too quick for me :(

    ReplyDelete
  7. Super series of photos, a great lens, and sports mode worked very well. Love the wee fellow with fat cheeks. Cheers, Jean

    ReplyDelete
  8. Good shots!

    I always enjoy watching the intense focus of a heron doing some fishing.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Beautiful collection of shots!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Beautiful critters! I love the chipmunk.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Ah, what a nice assortment of bird/critter photos. I just love the Great Blue Herons.

    ReplyDelete
  12. You got a couple of great shots of the heron, and I love the Osprey nest. Please return and get more photos as the chicks grow.

    ReplyDelete
  13. The lighting on the first photo of the great blue is really nice -- keep up the good work.

    ReplyDelete
  14. HI Wonderful critter post especially chipmunk.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great to see these shots of all the birds and critters. I haven't seen many doves around the past week or so and maybe they are already nesting. I saw two large birds on a nesting pole along the TCH on Saturday but didn't see if they were Osprey or Eagles. I should have stopped and got a photo. :)

    ReplyDelete