Word travels fast…

I hear that snow is on its way, and it sure appeared that way in Estabrook when I arrived around noon today, but it’s not supposed to start in earnest until sunset.

The yellow-bellied sapsuckers must have heard that the red-bellied woodpeckers were getting into their sap, because I spotted my first one today, this striking juvenile in a maple tree just west of the volleyball court. I’ve never seen a juvy before, so I wasn’t sure who it was at first, but its behavior gave it away. Plus, it really does have a pretty yellow belly, doesn’t it?

We’re about 200 miles north of the north edge of their winter range, and “they arrive back north in May,” so this one has really jumped the gun! “Welcome to Estabrook, Kiddo, and we hope you can find enough sap to sip to get you through the next couple of months.”

Down on the river, I was happy to see our little hoody, the hooded merganser hen, was back and taking a break on the ice.

There were also about a half dozen goldeneyes around, and here’s one drake.

The bufflehead pair and a few mallards were there too, but I showed you pictures of them just yesterday.

Finally, by the pond, I spotted another dark-eyed junco variation, an “Oregon” form this time, to go with the “gray-headed” one we saw on Tuesday.

You can find a fun article about identifying all the junco types here.

Well, the snow is supposed to peter out by sunrise, and we might even get a little sunshine, so here’s hoping for some pretty scenes tomorrow.

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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