Some regulars, a fun little return, and something new for a change.

The heat and humidity persist, and even the mosquitoes seem to be getting tired of it. “No, no, seriously, we couldn’t drink another drop!” But maybe that was more due to my imagination or the slight breeze this morning.

Anyway, a blue heron was on the pond when I arrived, and Lisa said there were two when she first approached. Here’s the one that stuck around.

In the branches right above it was our new little friend, the young night-heron, who appears to be dozing off at the moment.

I counted seven wood ducks and three mallards today, and here is one of the pretty little female wood ducks drifting by the island.

I had a hope for another little parade of songbirds, as we saw yesterday, but that was not to be. Instead, there was quite a hubbub among the chickadees in the big tree right over the bench on the west lawn, and as I got closer, I could see several individuals hopping from branch to branch near the middle of the tree as they chirped, but it took me a moment to finally spot the cause of all their excitement.

This little half-pint was sitting as still as it could in a shallow hole in the trunk, about ten feet off the ground, and it appeared to be all by itself. I took a couple of shots, it seemed to never move, the chickadees cleared out, and then I headed to the river.

As seems to be the new normal these days, the river was very quiet today, so I soon reached the soccer fields, but the goldenrod was not as bustling with bees as yesterday. There were, however, several wasps and/or hornets giving us one more sign of the passing of summer. There are no more larvae in their nests to convert insects they are fed into sugar on which the adults can feed, so the adults are forced to forage for their sugar from other sources, especially your soda can, but it appears that goldenrod nectar will do.

I thought I had caught a nice example of that situation for you in the images below, but it turns out that this is a potter wasp instead, specifically Eumenes fraternus, and while the female does build “a miniature pot out of mud in which it lays an egg and places a live caterpillar” for the developing larva to feed upon, “the adult wasp feeds primarily on nectar,” as this one was contentedly doing.

Oh well, maybe next time. It is a pretty striking creature in any case, eh?

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 “Some regulars, a fun little return, and something new for a change.

  1. My first thought: They’re all God’s creatures, and I don’t even believe in God, a God, a Goddess, whatever. Thank you.


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