More changes afoot.

Things are getting pretty noisy in Estabrook. The singing cardinals, chickadees, and red-bellied woodpeckers have been joined by several red-winged blackbirds along the river and now a huge gaggle of geese. There were as many as 100 birds on the river at the north end, and they all appeared to be  jockeying for about a dozen or two viable nesting sites on the two islands. Thus, there was a whole lot of honking going on this morning.

Here’s a closeup of one pair.

The geese were joined by nearly as many mallards, about a dozen goldeneyes, a half dozen common mergansers, and one pair of buffleheads.

Meanwhile, things are quieter at the pond, for now. One pair of geese has arrived, and they seemed quite used to folks walking by, so perhaps they are one of the pairs who nested on the island last year. “Welcome back, you two!”

There was one red-winged blackbird calling from the treetops again, and several cardinals flitting about, but the usual crowds of house finches and house sparrows were still absent.

Back at the river, three or four robins were taking turns getting sips of river water from the edge of the rapidly receding ice.

Finally, back up on the bluff at the south end, this male downy woodpecker paused for a second in the morning sun before resuming his hunt for calories. “Keep up the good work, little buddy!”

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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