Man! You go away for just five days, and everything changes.
The main story, I suppose, is that the third set of goslings on the pond, the ones incubated on the southern tip of the island, have finally hatched, and there appears to be only one for all that effort. When I arrived, Mom and Dad were taking a well-deserved break on the lawn, and Junior was over with the neighbors already for breakfast.
Meanwhile, the third family, the ones who hiked up from the river, are getting huge!
Meanwhile, at the river, it appears that all our robin chicks have fledged already! Both nests were empty, and I hardly saw a robin this morning. Perhaps some are gearing up for that second brood that John Gurda dreads.
There was also a pretty young looking brood of goslings out for a swim with their folks.
Further north, I spotted a hearing gull fishing over the falls. It even caught something on the third pass, but I missed that shot. Sorry. Out of practice I guess.
A house wren posed in the sun
And I finally got a glimpse of who does all that incessent soft chirping from a hole in a tree as the adult male hairy woodpecker scolds me for getting too close.
Finally, there are a few new blossoms open in the park, including the horse chestnut trees (Aesculus hippocastanum) at the south end,
The tatarian honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica) throughout the park,
Lastly, I did spot a couple of fun things out east. First is this handsome garter snake warming up in the morning sun in the woods beside the Sheraton in Rocky Hill were we stayed after the reception. I’ve been searching for them high and low in Estabrook since last spring, and I find this one on a 10-minute stroll with nothing but my mobile phone. Ha!
There was also a nice tiger swallowtail on my mom’s azalea, but it’s image is still on my sister’s camera back in CT. Don’t worry. We’ll have our own here soon enough.
PS. I found my fourth park beer, but this one’s a bud light, so I’ll drink it only for scientific purposes, and I won’t enjoy it.