Yikes! And to think I thought it was cold yesterday. At least I was better dressed for it this time. Even the deer quartet we’ve been seeing lately appear to have sought someplace warmer. Otherwise, it was a beautiful morning in Estabrook, and the mergansers and goldeneyes were on the river at the south end as usual lately.
The first pretty picture I have, however, is of this female cardinal who was not only making herself visible but also making herself heard.
Beside the falls, I was surprised to find this grey squirrel apparently eating the buds off this tree, which identify.plantnet.org thinks is probably a pignut hickory (Carya glabra). Man, if it were an ornamental, or even a specimen tree, that I had planted in my yard, I would not be happy about this. Happily, it’s growing wild in the park so who cares, and bon appetit, my little friend!
Above the falls, there were plenty of goldeneyes, the pair of buffleheads, and a couple of geese, but I was surprised to see no mallards.
A bit further north, I might have spotted the reason why, but I’m sad to report that it took off before I could get any closer.
When I came back south, the male goldeneyes were doing their courtship displays again, and often more than one at a time would participate.
After a while, they appeared to quit that and resume foraging on the river bottom, so I headed over to the pond, and look who I saw there.
The park is full of cardinals right now, as it probably is all the time, so there is no reason in the world to think that she is the same one from earlier by the river, but I’m finding this side of their personalities fascinating.