A quickie before the F&F Fest

Between the dark skies and falling rain, it was a short trip this morning. I glanced at the pond, didn’t see anything new, and kept right on truckin’ to the river at the north end. There, I did see a youngish blue heron again, but this time it scratched an itch instead of caught a fish.

While I was trying to line up a shot of the killdeer again, I saw a kingfisher fly north over the river, quieter and slower than usual, and then swoop up to its usual spot in the tall trees on the island. Just as I turned back to the killdeer, the kingfisher started squawking like mad, made an instant u-turn and fled for its life from a little raptor that had been waiting for it in that tree.

Well, the kingfisher managed to get away, and the raptor returned to the tree top so we could get a good look at it. It sure looks like a merlin, which we saw back in January and again in March, not the young peregrine falcon, whose parent, perhaps, we last saw on the TV tower back in July. Love to see it. Welcome back to Estabrook!

On my way back south, I think I caught a glimpse of a chirping chipping sparrow young white-crowned sparrow. It look’s like the Lincoln’s sparrow, but without the narrow black streaks on its head and with light wing bars. We’ll see. I’m sure someone will set me straight if I’m wrong.

At the same spot, a female downy woodpecker was busy foraging for breakfast.

By the stream that comes down from the pond, the chickadees were hard at work on the cutleaf coneflower again.

This one almost seems to be saying, “take a picture. It’ll last longer.” Ouch!

Finally, as I walked along the parkway to get home, I could here several nuthatches, and when I looked, I found four of them foraging noisily together right beside the walkway.

“What the chickadee said.”

Lastly, I gotta go setup for the Fish and Feather Festival in Hubbard Park, so I apologize in advance for the inevitable typos. Now the forecast is for less than a 25% chance of rain until 3pm, so I have a hope of staying dry, and I’d love to see you there.


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.

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