A blue heron day…

When I glanced out the window this morning, I was thrilled to see not a cloud in the pre-dawn sky, so I hustled out the door. I don’t know where the deer have gone, but I seldom see them anymore, unlike last summer when they seemed ubiquitous. Thus, I made it to the pond in record time, at which point a fog bank rolled in off the lake and I enjoyed a brief lake-effect shower.

The usual contingent of ducks and ducklings were about, but still no raccoons. Maybe they’re taking a little break from crayfish for breakfast. We did have one young blue heron, however, still experimenting with “hairstyles” it seems, up in one of the birch trees along the east shore.

At the river, I spotted just one beaver today, and I think that’s Ma or Pa.

And even before I reached the falls, I saw another blue heron, an adult this time, fishing in the small stream that drains the small pond on the west side into the river just below the old bridge abutment.

Above the falls, I was surprised to spot yet another brood of very fresh-looking mallard ducklings.

As I was taking their picture across the river, I accidentally spooked these three, older ducklings who then shot out onto the water on their own.

They quickly paddled over to the far shore as one intermittently chirped, as if calling for Mom.

One mallard hen, who was dabbling with some others near that far shore, approached, but they shied away from her.

Finally, Mom, who must have been off on an errand just a bit upstream, finally heard their call, and flew diagonally across the water to reunite with them.


At the north end, there are a ton of geese about, and the goslings are starting to look all grown up, but I failed to capture a decent image.

On my way back south, a third blue heron was in the usual spot at the falls.

Meanwhile, the second one was still at the mouth of the stream when I went by, so I’m pretty sure there were at least 3 distinct blue herons in Estabrook this morning.

Finally, as I approached the weeds beside the soccer fields in hopes of a pretty butterfly, this busy little nuthatch reminded me that we haven’t seen much of them for a while, and we have a beautiful blue sky for a change.

At the weeds, sure enough, there were two monarchs. One flew off right away, but the second must have still been hungry for some of that sweet, sweet Canada thistle nectar.

Oh yeah! I almost forgot to mention that I heard my first cicada yesterday afternoon on my walk back from the grocery store. Happy July, everybody!

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.

2 thoughts on “A blue heron day…

    1. If, by “guided tour”, you mean walking around and pointing out rocks and trees and explaining “this is where I saw” this or that, then sure, I think I can do that. Shall I look for you at the southern parking lot at 5 tomorrow morning? 😉


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