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Saturday, August 30, 2008


These pictures were taken about three weeks ago, when our visitors from Toronto were here. We went to this nearby lake. The children loved it. I pointed out the shorebirds to my little three year old granddaughter who was walking along the shore with me. "Where are they, Grandma, I can't see them, where are they," she said as she looked through the binoculars trying to find the birds.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think this sandpiper is known as Yellowlegs. I'm not sure whether it's the Greater or Lesser Yellowlegs though.
This is one of the chicks we saw making its way slowly over the rocks to the water.
Here's a zoomed in photo of the same fluffy chick.

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Sky Watch - Clouds and Lake Reflections

"The sky is the daily bread of the eyes."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sky Watch participants
Hosted by Tom, Sandy, Klaus and Imac

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


and the jaunty red cap
of a Pileated Woodpecker
On this day he flew from tree to tree
stopping at the Serviceberry bush
(we call it Saskatoon here)
for a juicy treat. Here he is clinging
to one of the berry laden branches.
The same Pileated Woodpecker
on a Birch tree. His red cap and red
moustache stripe really stand out!

Ruby Tuesday is hosted by Work of the Poet.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Calliope, I believe. They have a shorter bill and tail.

I've been trying all summer to get a photo of a hummingbird at a flower. They zip around so fast though! These are the ones that turned out the best, and I can see that I've left a lot of room for improvement. We have both the Rufous and Calliope staying with us during the summer. There are still a few coming to the feeders, but soon they will be leaving for their long journey south. I know they go purely by instinct, but I admire their brave little spirits.

24/08/08 Note: The flower is Larkspur.

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Thursday, August 21, 2008

A View

no one at home in this large nest,
an impressive sight high atop a leafless
(lifeless) poplar tree with wispy clouds
floating by in a bright blue sky.
the tree's branches stark
against the wide awake sky, reaching,
everything touching, interconnected,
a memory woven by time.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Nature Notes

A rainy day-

Saw three deer grazing in a logged off area adjacent to the highway on the way home from the city.

In the evening a Downy Woodpecker pecked on the corner of the house. He wasn't exactly welcome, and I had to shoo him away.

With the window open in my computer room, I heard all kinds of bird sounds. Also, heard "plop, plop, plop". At first I thought it was hail coming down until I looked closer and saw the Birch tree cones. And there was Squirrel at the very top working his way through the branches and cutting the cones which then landed at the base of the tree. Wow, that's a sure sign that Autumn is on the way when Squirrel begins harvesting and hoarding food for the winter (shh, I don't want to say the "w" word too loudly yet).

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Close to Home

All the forest animals and birds are busy foraging for food.
Tap, tap, tap
I took these pictures of two Pileated Woodpeckers ten days
ago when I spotted them outside by the back deck. I had to
be so careful not to let them see or hear me as they are very
shy and would have flown away immediately. How do you
open a window quietly? I did it during the tapping.
A close-up of one of them digging for ants.

These last four pictures were taken on Friday
I'm seeing lots of little birds now flitting in and out of the trees,
after the berries, seeds of the weeds and flowers or insects.
The Northern Flicker is here as well; sometimes I have
come upon them on the ground grubbing for ants. This one
detected me and flew down the hill to perch on this birch
tree, still very cautious.
The chipmunk was so much fun to watch as I sat at the
picnic table. He was having a great time in the Saskatoon
berry bush,
his cheeks bulging with ripe berries.

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Monday, August 11, 2008

A Windy Day

A Bald Eagle, his feathers ruffled by the wind, surveys the choppy waters of the lake and then casts a wary glance in the direction of the people on the beach.
Our son and his family (visiting from Toronto) with my husband. We had so much fun with our little granddaughters (ages 3 & 4). They loved exploring the beach - watching the birds through the binoculars, finding pretty stones, collecting reeds, picking up ants, running and telling Grandma about their discoveries.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Placid River Scenes

Ne'er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will:
Dear God! the very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!
Earth has not anything to show more fair.

~ William Wordsworth
Composed on Westminster Bridge, Sept. 3 - 1802

William Wordsworth (1770-1850)
English Poet

My river is not the Thames in London, England, yet the feelings expressed in this beautiful poem are universal and timeless and could very well depict what I saw on a recent still morning (except, of course, for the city scene). "A sight so touching in its majesty"

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Red-winged Blackbird

Sighting in a marshy spot at the road's edge
The Red-winged Blackbird is found
throughout B.C. during the summer
in these thick marsh land bulrushes.

I have never seen them before,
but I think these are the immature birds.
They have those beautiful stripes
all the way down the front.

I'd appreciate knowing for certain if I've identified
these small birds correctly.

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Friday, August 1, 2008