Sunday, September 13, 2015

Early Morning

A cool breeze whispered in my ear. I zipped up my sweatshirt and breathed in the lovely chill in the air. What a relief from days of intense heat. The smell reminded me of the ocean, but the ocean lies far away. I have an ocean of prairie all around and the sound of crickets and locusts charm me. I just sit and listen to what they sing. I watch the sun as it peeks above some clouds and brightens the world around me. It is a wonderful day, and will be hard to ever go inside. I sleep better when it is like this, but today got up with beauty on my mind. I  sip my coffee and realize a pastry would have had some charm. I  couldn't make up my mind the day before what was best and ended up getting some as gifts  for my grandchildren. I included some buckeyes to plant for a pretty tree in the spring.

Young Bald Eagle

Giant Swallowtail

I have watched two families of Green Heron this year. Here a youngster stalks a meal.

Gone are most of the Red- headed Woodpeckers. They like to  winter farther south, and only a few might stay. I hadn't seen one in a week or so. I have been tagging Monarchs with a few groups around the state. It is fun to meet children who some day may take over my passion for the outdoors. Monarchs like to migrate to Mexico, and this is part of a study with the University of Kansas. I have really been putting on the miles watching a lot of migrating birds and insects. Sometimes I feel I should just join them and head into fair weather all winter.
This wetland provided a nice protected area for a pair of woodpeckers. I will go back and watch to see if they stay over the winter. They were the first I had seen for over a week.


  1. That was a peaceful narrative. Nice to read. We saw our first Green Heron recently, near some dunes at the edge of Lake Michigan. We saw only a female. Hopefully she had a mate nearby so we may see more in the future. Love your photos!

  2. HI Steve - beautiful shots ... I love seeing the green covered otter ...and the red headed woodpecker. Since our trees came down .. I've seen some birds that I couldn't easily spot before ... so I've got the pamphlets out and will later on get the binoculars out to identify them. Your ocean prairie sounds amazing.

    The work you're doing for the University of Kansas must be so rewarding and often adult help does rub off on school kids ... budding scientists they might become.

    Cheers - Hilary

  3. Early morning is the best, especially when you have the time to sit and watch the world wake up. I'm wishing I would have picked up some pastries yesterday though :)

  4. Such lovely wildlife and nature shots. If you like you can link in on an all new edition of "Through My Lens" photo meme. Link is below.

    Mersad Donko Photography

  5. Beautiful. Love the otter's wet, leafy coat.

  6. You have so many beautiful shots in this post, it would take too long to comment on each one. You know I love the Monarchs, but I think the Giant Swallowtail wins today. What a beautiful butterfly. And, of course, I loved the eagle and the woodpecker and the frog and...oh, you get the gist.

  7. Stay where you are . It's a great area. We need guys like you to work on looking after the land and it's critters.

  8. I love all the animal pictures. I'm not sure what the cooler weather means for animals around here. Maybe I'll see more birds at the feeder.

  9. You can almost feel the chill 'a coming....
    Love the shots and a cream donut would have been to as well!Hahaa

  10. I don't guess I've ever seen a red headed woodpecker.

  11. A very nice narrative and terrific photos with the frog being my favorite in this series, Steve. I too welcome cooler weather and being a le to go for outdoor walks without sweating and instead wearing a comfortable fleece or sweatshirt.


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