A surprise visitor…

The heavy overcast continues, but the air keeps getting a little warmer, the wind wasn’t too strong, and the forecast showers did not develop, so it was not too bad in Estabrook Park this morning.

My first big treat was spotting this beaver hauling a branch upriver in the same spot where we saw one doing the same with a clump of dried grass last week. I sure hope that means it has mouths to feed at home.

Here’s a wider look so you can see the size of the branch it has.

At the pond, the owl was gone, and I didn’t see the goslings at first, so I made do with this sharp-looking common yellowthroat.

I did eventually find the goslings, and here are all six taking a swim with Mom and Dad.

Back at the river, I did see our regular great horned owl back in its hiding place, the belted kingfishers were busy (and noisy), and here’s one giving me a look.

Farther north, I spotted another black-and-white warbler foraging at the water’s edge.

And here’s the prairie warbler (Setophaga discolor) that everyone is so excited about lately. Seriously, I must have bumped into 6 people this morning who had all come to Estabrook just to see it. It is quite a bit north of its usual range, so I guess this is a rare chance to see one without driving to Kentucky.

Farther south, I spotted another family of geese, but with only one gosling. It appears to be a tough spring for Canada geese, at least compared to last year.

Finally, Lisa noticed a great blue heron glide by, so I was able to get a much nicer picture than earlier when it was on the other side of the river, and the sky was darker.

It is supposed to be raining all day tomorrow, and I’m supposed to be on campus for a special event anyway, so I’m not sure if I’ll have something for you until Sunday. I’ll be sure to let you know if anything changes.

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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