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Monday, March 29, 2010

Basking in the Sun

Garter Snakes
Their "notice sudden is" *

* from Snake by Emily Dickinson

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Out of Hibernation

For the past week I have been checking this birch tree to see if the garter snakes have come out of hibernation. Today I saw the first one warming itself on the trunk. It is their usual and favourite springtime spot. Their den must be fairly close, although I have never seen it. This particular tree is also perfectly situated for catching the benefits of the strong afternoon sun, and just look how well the snake blends in with its surroundings.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Walk in the Forest

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Sinkut Mountain

Forest Floor

Tree Stump
Red Squirrel

Moss and Lichen
Spruce and Birch Trees

Kinnikinnick (Bearberry)

The picture below was added later the same day. We were visited by three Mule Deer in the afternoon. One was in the garden, and two were in the area of the compost bins. It's not often that we see them so close to the house. This deer saw me and made off down the hill.

Mule Deer on hillside

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A Beautiful Springlike Day in the Central Interior of British Columbia

An immature Bald Eagle perches in a tall poplar tree.

It takes four or five years before a Bald Eagle acquires the characteristic adult plumage.

The lake is slowly opening up...sunlight sparkles on the water.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Spring Rituals

The forest has come alive again with the first stirrings of spring. Last week I saw above me two crows performing their aerial courtship, and today I saw one with a twig in its bill. They certainly are more vocal than they have been all winter, and there are more of them, too. The Pileated Woodpeckers also have begun their ritualistic tattooing, declaring territorial rights or trying to attract the attention of a mate.

The loud hammering drew me to a hydro pole a short distance from the driveway.

Fortunately, the Pileated Woodpecker soon gave up this dangerous perching spot and flew back to a dead, hollow tree, where I had first seen it during my walk earlier.