Time for some close-ups!

Let’s cut straight to the chase. The goslings on the river appeared hale and hearty this morning. In fact, they had swum across the channel, and I found them foraging for breakfast on the mainland.

It was fascinating for me to see how much they attracted other, adult geese. There were at least three other pairs of geese hovering around, and Dad had to chase away someone who got too close on more than one occasion, and it was never me. After a bit, Mom and Dad escorted the little ones back across the channel to the island, perhaps for a well-deserved nap.

While I was there, trying to get the pictures above, I couldn’t help but notice a whole raft of blue-winged teals just off the northern tip of the island. I’ve never seen so many at once before, and they seemed surprisingly undisturbed by me. I counted 17 in all, but this image is the prettiest. I was torn between taking picture of the goslings vs the teals.

On top of all that, there was a new bird on the river, at least to me. This time, it’s a solitary sandpiper (Tringa solitaria), and yes, “solitary” really is part of its name. For comparison, here’s the best image I have of the juvenile spotted sandpiper from last summer, and the killdeer from last week.

There were tree swallows hunting insects over the river, and they seemed to be coming and going from one tree on the other bank, but I couldn’t get a picture to save my life. Instead, I was treated to a different little hunting party, two pair of wood ducks and a pair of teals slowly steaming upriver and munching something off the top of the water as they went.

I had no idea that teals were so clearly smaller than wood ducks, which are themselves diminutive compared to mallards. What will they think of next?

I stopped by the pond, twice, to check on our geese there, and both moms were still safely on their nests, but there was no hatching yet. Same goes for our two robins. As I reluctantly headed home, I did spot this little bit of evidence that we can hope signals a successful hatching somewhere.

Finally, there is yet another mushroom up in the park, and I have no idea what it is.

Published by Andrew Dressel

Theoretical and Applied Bicycle Mechanic, and now, apparently, Amateur Naturalist. In any case, my day job is teaching mechanics at UWM.

One thought on “Time for some close-ups!

  1. Andrew, please let us know if you ever see Mom Goose put up a sign to kiss gosling heads for $1.00 a kiss. I have a 10 spot and want to kiss all those babies!


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