It’s good to be back…

Aaaah. We had an amazing trip, and I’m thrilled to have had the opportunity to experience such wonderful places, but it also feels really good to be back in Estabrook. I like what you’ve done with the place while I was gone.

Frogs are signing on the pond and on the river.

The ebony jewelwings are back.

One of the beaver swam by to say hi.

A fresh batch of mallard ducklings are exploring the river in Mom’s wake.

The downy woodpeckers from a couple of weeks ago are still raising their chicks.

A rabbit was out munching on the clover in the sun before it got hot.

A pair of killdeer were especially noisy on the river at the north end.

A monarch was out and looking for just the right perch, and it took her several tries before she opted for the fresh red clover (Trifolium pratense) this morning. (If he’s a he, not that it really matters I guess, he’s did a good job of hiding his identifying spot on his hind wings.)

Speaking of clover, there are a few new blossoms open in the park. Here’s some fleabane, which has been up for a couple of weeks, but not very photogenic until now.



Wild rose, maybe prickly wild rose (Rosa acicularis), prairie rose (Rosa arkansana), Virginia rose (Rosa virginiana), or Wood’s rose (Rosa woodsii), growing right at the end of the board walk below the beer garden.

Foxglove beard-tongue (Penstemon digitalis) on the side of the bluff.

Finally, a new warbler to us, a mourning warbler (Geothlypis philadelphia), was serenading the soccer fields this morning with all his might.

We’re in his breeding range, so maybe he’ll stick around for the summer. We can hope, right?

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.

3 thoughts on “It’s good to be back…

  1. Looks like a male monarch. You can make out a faint spot in the closed wing photo. I’ve raised monarchs for 2 decades and have gotten good at telling male/female even with closed wings.
    Have you thought about looking on the underside of leaves of caterpillar host plants for eggs? They can be quite pretty and would present you with a new challenge.
    I so enjoy reading your posts. Always a delight. Thank you for bringing the park to your followers.


    1. Ms. Wesener,

      Thanks for your keen eye and thoughtful reply. I have checked milkweed when I see it, but I don’t know any of the other hose plants yet. Heck, I’m still learning my backyard birds. Perhaps if I start slow with one more new one at a time. I just looked up tiger swallowtail, which would be an awesome caterpillar to spot, but I can’t think of where there are tulip trees or magnolia in Estabrook. What would you suggest I try for next?


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