Now you see me…now you don’t.

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On The Doorstep Of Fall

Just thought I would post a few pictures from yesterday and today. The seasons definitely feel like they are changing. The air is crisper and clearer. The trees are on the brink of changing colour, and the animals are all very busy preparing for the winter.

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Evening and dusk
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Moon setting behind a cloud early this morning

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Crisp, clear evening

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Sunrise reflected on trees with morning fog

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Saw the first otter since spring!

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Heard what I thought was knocking at the door (apparently so did my dog because she started barking). It turned out to be this guy on the tree beside our house!

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Love our bedroom in the fall…

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…and the sparkling reflection of the water from the living room.

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The trees are just on the brink of changing colour.

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One thing about fall I can’t say I am fond of is it also means a rush to be prepared for the long winter ahead. Here are our wood piles in various stages of chopping.

Battle of a Young Bald Eagle and and Osprey

Heard weird screams outside a few minutes ago and looked out to see a young bald eagle and osprey fighting in mid-air! Two incredibly strong birds. Eagle won and osprey flew away seemingly unscathed. Wow!

Grabbed my camera but the battery was still in the charger – of course >:s  By the time I got the camera ready, all that was left of the battle was the young bald eagle circling the lake looking for fish. Oh well, here are my very rough photos of it.

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Have You Ever Seen a Turtle Climb a Fence?

Over the last few mornings we have had a steady trail of snapping turtles climbing our septic bed to dig in the dirt/sand at the top and lay their eggs. This morning I noticed this one who had a different approach than the others. She seemed to be eyeing the vegetable garden instead.  Snapping turtle on it's way to the veg. gardenI took the above shots trying not to disturb her too much and when I walked back to the house, I turned around and saw her trying to climb the fence!Turtle climbing garden fenceOf course when I went back to take more pictures of her she acted like a statue again 🙂turtle trying to get into garden turtle trying to get into the gardenI never did see where she laid her eggs but I hope she had success somewhere!

Storms, Dragonflies and Goslings

Two days ago there was sweltering heat and this morning I have the fire on and it snowed again! Here are some photos taken two days ago on May 22nd. What a day!

First there were the storms, then sunshine and goslings followed by a special appearance by hundreds of dragonflies.

In the morning we had a brief but very intense storm. Here are some photos of the approaching storm.
Approaching storm 8:54:19 am

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8:55:57 am

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Rain sweeping across far shore 8:57:31 am

 

Rain moving in 8:58:01 am

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may23_2013_6Holy (insert swearing)! 8:59:02 am


This is about the moment when I realized I am probably one of those people who will end up in a tornado because they are to busy taking photos instead of taking cover!

It seems Daisy knew how to take cover. I found her wedged in the corner of the laundry room.


A few minutes after the storm passed and my nerves settled, I noticed the pea-sized hail remaining on my daughter’s shirt which was left outside in the rain.

Goslings

Later that day you wouldn’t even think it would have been possible to have had such a storm – other than the debris from trees scattered about. The weather turned sunny and steamy from all the rainfall and it was an incredible evening. The geese and their goslings sure seemed to enjoy it.

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dragonflies

A little earlier in the day when I walked outside, I had noticed hundreds of dragonflies flying around and had to be careful where I stepped since they were in the process of transforming from nymph to dragonfly. They had just come out of their exoskeletons and were pumping their wings to prepare for their first flight. I find it a rare occurrence to catch that moment since it only seems to happen for a day or two and I was happy to see so many dragonflies especially since the mosquitos have been wicked lately!

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Picture of dragonflies with their nymph exoskeleton (probably not the accurate term)
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Beautiful wings which have not yet flown.
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We noticed some of the dragonflies were on the ground in places where ants had found them and were trying to eat them, so the girls and I “rescued” as many as we could by gently letting them walk onto our hands and then relocating them to a safer place. may23_2013_13 may23_2013_14 may23_2013_15 may23_2013_16 may23_2013_17 may23_2013_18Gently blowing on its wet wings to help straighten them out.

After “rescuing” upwards of 20 dragonflies, I read this article which made me question if it was wise to let the girls hold them with bare hands. The dragonflies must not have felt threatened since they didn’t bite and I didn’t want to spoil the experience for the girls but perhaps a bite would have ruined it anyway. I would love to hear what you think. Was it the right decision to let them hold the dragonflies?

Have a wonderful weekend and wherever you are this weekend, I wish you no snow!

A Fire a Coyote and Other Stuff

Yesterday was a beautiful, sunny day. The kids and their dad did a yard cleanup and burned some of the sticks and leaves they raked. The girls were so excited to have a real fire and pretended they were camping. They even got to roast a real marshmallow 🙂

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At dusk, we had a surprise visit from a coyote. By the time I got my camera, it was already too far for a good picture but I thought I would show the best one I took anyway. I posted a few better photos I took a while ago here. It had it’s eyes fixed on some geese on the ice. Needless to say, we kept our dog Daisy in for the night since we don’t want this to happen to her again.
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On another note, I snapped this photo below of a garden the girls made out of their toys. It seems planting the seeds has also inspired them.
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Happy Sunday!

Elusive and Silly Otters

For only a day or two every spring and sometimes in the fall, we have the rare opportunity to see otters. It is usually when the ice is half covering the lake and they are so much fun to watch slide and play. Unfortunately they are at a distance so it is difficult to get a good photo of them.

One year I saw a Bald Eagle after one! I am not sure if they were competing for a fish but the otter wouldn’t go under the ice, (maybe for fear of getting trapped?) instead it insisted on going over it which was much to thin and kept breaking under it’s weight. The eagle kept diving at it and finally the otter got to open water and dove under to get away. I wish I had a good telephoto lens for that scene!

These are the best photos I could snap so my apologies for my amateurish photography. They are so fun to watch when they run and slide on their bellies. They look like they are always having fun!

Young Bald Eagle Learning to Fish – “If at First You Don’t Succeed…”

Found some more photos I took of one of the neighbours a couple of years ago. One afternoon, I noticed a huge bird swooping over and over again down to the water at the end of our lawn. It must have done this for about 20 minutes. I managed to snap a few photos through which I later identified the bird to be a young Bald Eagle. It didn’t have it’s identifiable white head yet so I was stumped. It was pretty special to be able to view such a stunning and skilled bird learning it’s craft. When watching the grace and power of an adult eagle catch fish, it is hard to believe they have to aquire this skill, but watching how hard this young bird had to work and practice over and over again to learn, sometimes gracefully, other times downright gawky, it was pretty awesome (and inspiring) to witness.

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First Gosling! And a Duck Who Thought She Was The Mom?

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Yesterday I saw the first gosling of the year! Right when I noticed it and was snapping away with my camera, I noticed something interesting happening…

…so, there is the little gosling (soooo cute).


 Along came a curious Ring Necked Duck followed by some males vying for her attention. 

The little duck gets chased by a parent goose who is rightfully protecting it’s only baby.

The duck does not give up. She chases away her male pursuers and continues to follow the gosling, quite smitten by it.  

Finally, she catches up and the parent geese decide she is not really much of a threat so allow her to hang out with them. The duck kept swimming around the little gosling who was curious about the duck.

For a short while, she managed to have the gosling all to herself while the parents watched from not to far away.

Eventually the parents decided to step in again and shoo away the duck after they let her have her fun.

I really have not idea why this duck was so interested in the gosling. It seemed to me she wanted to be it’s mother, but of course being a mother myself, I am only speculating from my own perspective! Perhaps she was just curious, or wanted to play. Whatever the situation, it was fun to watch 🙂