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Saturday, July 25, 2015

A Large Fledgling

photo taken from an upstairs window

This baby Bald Eagle landed at our doorstep one evening recently.  He/she tried to fly but couldn't manage to lift off.  He waddled down the path toward a more open area and stayed there just looking around.  In the morning we came across him perched on a tree that had fallen over in a wind storm.  When he saw us, he spread his wings and flew down the hill.  It seemed he needed a clear spot and a higher elevation to get started.  Happy ending.   

Friday, July 24, 2015


A hummingbird perches among the Saskatoon berries.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Berry Picking Time

Some birds eat the whole berry; other birds eat only the seeds.

Sunday, July 19, 2015


on a sunny morning

It is eight o'clock in the morning, and one of the young Merlins is perched in a Spruce tree at the back of the house calling and calling and calling.  Another Merlin lands on a branch below with its prey.  This is probably the parent with some food for the youngster.

Some Facts:
Breeding period: May
Clutch: 3 - 5 eggs
Incubation period: 1 month
The young leave the nest when they are 25 - 35 days old.
Shortly afterwards, they begin to catch insects on their own, but still rely on their parents for another month or so.   

Wednesday, July 15, 2015


Now that the hummingbird babies have fledged, there is a lot of activity at the feeders.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Snowshoe Hare

When I looked out and saw Hare-iet in my garden, I quickly pulled up the venetian blind.  She immediately jumped at the sound and ran to the safety of the bushes.  The next time I saw her, she was sitting on a mound in the front yard eating clover.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Merlin Pair

I couldn't see very well as they were in the upper regions of the tree, and at first I thought there was only one Merlin.  There was some movement and feathers floating down.  

Sunday, May 3, 2015

White-crowned Sparrow

I am seeing many White-crowned Sparrows lately.  It's a treat to observe them as they practically run everywhere foraging for insects and seeds. 

Friday, May 1, 2015

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

A flock of Yellow-rumped Warblers have been active in the garden today.  This one seems to have caught an ant.

Weather:  a little of everything - wind, hail, rain, clouds, sun

Sunday, April 12, 2015

A Visitor to the Garden

stayed a while enjoying the freshly sprouted grass

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Garter Snakes on a Warm, Sunny Afternoon

I've been checking every day now for the past week to see if any of the garter snakes had emerged from their winter den.  This afternoon when I was out walking around, there were two on the grass warming themselves in the bright sunshine.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Dark-eyed Junco
Hope Is The Thing With Feathers by Emily Dickinson

"Hope" is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all -

And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard -
And sore must be the storm -
That could abash the little Bird 
That kept so many warm -

I've heard it in the chillest land -
And on the strangest Sea -
Yet - never - in Extremity,
It asked a crumb - of me.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Crow Pair

It's wonderful to see them again. 

Here they are under the bird feeders.  Look at their glossy feathers. The crows returning to the surrounding woods to nest are one of the earlier signs of spring here.

There are a few snowflakes falling, and the temperature is about 1°C this morning. 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

On a Rainy Morning

I observed a Pileated Woodpecker visiting one of the tall Spruce trees. She preened a little, looked this way and that and eventually flew to the adjacent property.

Pileated Woodpecker, female
Red cap isn't as extensive as the male's
Female has a black mustache

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Steller's Jay

This shy bird has been with us all winter.  Despite being constantly harassed by a squirrel, the jay has always returned to fill up on seeds.  Luckily, the squirrel wasn't around on this day, and the jay spent many peaceful minutes on the ground.

High: 14°C  We are having unusual weather for this time of year.  The snow is melting rapidly.  

Monday, March 9, 2015

Good Morning

Temperature: 6°C

The deer are beginning to shed their winter coat.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Cold Front

-16°C and sunny this morning

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Monday, March 2, 2015


on the way to the city

a fox with a white-tipped tail,

about to cross the road,

turned and trotted back toward the woods

to wait until we had passed by.

later, on the way home

a moose browsed on the other side of a fence

and didn't look up.

 on the home stretch

we slowed down for a deer

in the middle of the road.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Deer Browsing on Hillside

I watched the deer browsing on the hillside this morning.  They are the same four individuals which travel through every few days.  My initial sighting was of a deer resting a ways down the hill.  Or was it a rock that was shaped like a deer?  I've made similar mistakes before, but this time the "rock" flicked her ears.  Then I saw the other ones.  The deer in the photo was the closest for viewing and stayed in that spot pulling at branches, twigs and tufts of lichen or moss.  

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Frozen Lake

-8°C and sunny this morning

Friday, February 27, 2015

Fresh Tracks

Our little rabbit (snowshoe hare) friend is still around.  Most times we only see the tracks, but if fortune smiles on us, we will unexpectedly come upon him as he is hopping about the place.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

A Still Morning

Temperature: 0°C, flurries

The only wildlife to be seen:  A mischievous squirrel sits in the platform feeder eating seeds that are not meant for him.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Observing the Birds

A woodpecker perched on this spruce tree for several minutes
before descending to the suet cake that was hanging nearby.

This afternoon:
Pine Grosbeaks
Common Redpolls
Woodpecker (either Downy or Hairy)
Bald Eagle
Stellar's Jay
Red-breasted Nuthatch (heard)

Sunday, February 22, 2015


This morning I followed the deer's winter trail through the woods.  I tried to step where the deer had placed their hooves, but the snow had hardened into a deep rut, and I almost lost my balance a few times.  The deer have used this trail extensively, and they have left a lot of fertilizer behind for the woodland plants.  I noticed, too, that they have also bedded down beside the trail to rest and chew their cud.  When I finally had made it almost as far as the house again, I saw the juniper branch and the sunbeam.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Bald Eagle perched in a Spruce tree on a windy day

A short time later she flew over to where her mate was perched in another tree.

Saturday, February 14, 2015