Sunday, April 12, 2015
Early Spring Colors
The first Yellow-rumped Warblers have been moving into southern Wisconsin (and beyond) over the past week. At Pheasant Branch Conservancy we've not yet seen large numbers of them, but around a dozen were present today, plus a Pine Warbler. I wonder what the next warbler species will be ... perhaps Black-and-white or maybe Louisiana Waterthrush. More warblers are on the way.
Wood Duck (female)
Wood Ducks originally arrived at the confluence ponds a few weeks ago, but some have now made their way into the creek corridor; a few will likely nest there. Wood Ducks are generally wary of people, so it can take a bit of planning to get nice portraits of them.
Wood Duck (male)
Bloodroot became my first spring ephemeral.
Interesting bark lichens.
The confluence ponds along Deming Way have been attracting geese, ducks, grebes, and coots. This is also a good spot for swallows. So far I've seen Tree, Barn, Northern Rough-winged, Cliff, and Purple Martin. This Pied-billed Grebe was fairly close to the shore, so I decided to get a few photographs of it.
At the prairie & savanna
From the parking lot along Pheasant Branch Road, I used my spotting scope to see if I could detect any open Pasque Flowers. Sure enough, I was able to see some from over 500 yards away. On my way up the hill I came across a breeding ball of Garter Snakes. What a sight! In addition to the ball, there were dozens of others slithering all around me. The sound of them moving through the dry leaves and grass rendered a constant hiss. Lucky for me I'm not ophidiophobic.
Breeding ball of Garter Snakes!
And the Pasque Flowers...
Pheasant Branch, Dane, US-WI
Apr 12, 2015 6:45 AM - 12:15 PM
Great Blue Heron
Great Horned Owl
American Tree Sparrow
All images © 2015 Mike McDowell