Morning visitors

Every morning a family of whisky-jacks (also known as grey jays, Canada jays, or camp robbers) haunts our house here on Exploits. They’ve been coming around for decades and I often wonder if the current family is descended from the ones of my childhood. In other exciting news, we “discovered” a bee’s nest in the…

Yesterday and Today

There’s a world of difference in a day. The Robin Family has built a nest under Katherine’s playhouse, near the greenhouse. They were watching today as I worked on the irrigation system. Here’s hoping they determine that I’m harmless.

Fat ones, skinny ones, fair ones, too.

There must be a shoe, somewhere near Oxen Pond in the Botanical Gardens. There certainly is a woman with so many children, she doesn’t know what to do. We counted seventeen or eighteen ducklings for this mother duck, which is pretty large, considering Black Ducks usually have 6-12 eggs (Wikipedia says 6-14, my bird books…

Battery Resident

I’m up to my ears in meetings today and haven’t much time to write, but I thought you might like to meet a gull that we spotted, nesting on the rocks below the Blue Moon Pottery Studio in The Battery, St. John’s, Newfoundland. More tomorrow, I promise!

Oh so snowy

Update: General consensus among my bird-watching friends who have reviewed the pictures and assessed the plumage is that this owl is probably a “she” and not a “he” as was originally written. I concur and add that this owl was larger than I was expecting, having seen other male snow owls, which adds credence to…

Bits and pieces

My sister and I took a meander outside of town today to Chapel’s Cove. We had a nice little visit with Linda and the critters at Baynoddy and a pleasant lunch at The Pantry in Holyrood (huge portions, not expensive and very good!). I didn’t take all that many photos as it was more of…

Why did the spruce grouse cross the road?

Probably because I chased him. He wouldn’t fly though, despite the fact that I had the camera all set up to capture the beating of wings and fluttering  of feathers; he just skittered as fast as his snowshoe feet could take him across the road and into the ditch.

Widgeon-holed

Today we went adventuring in Harbour Grace and Mackinsons. More on that later. One of the cool things that happened occurred when I spotted a beautiful beam of light flashing across Harbour Grace harbour and gently requested that we turn the bus around, head for the south side of the harbour with some alacrity because…

A wander past Quidi Vidi Lake

I took a stroll past Quidi Vidi Lake on my way out of town today. It’s a measure of how crazy winter is driving me that I stopped to take pictures of seagulls. The lake has just frozen over on the western end (the eastern end has been frozen for some time) and the ice,…

Roads go ever on and on…

Roads go ever ever on, Over rock and under tree, By caves where never sun has shone, By streams that never find the sea; Over snow by winter sown, And through the merry flowers of June, Over grass and over stone, And under mountains in the moon. – J.R.R. Tolkien* One of my favourite sorts…

Critters

When I went a-wandering the other day, I took my new 55-200mm lens with me, hoping to see some nice birds. Like eagles. Or hawks. Or even acrobatic seagulls. I had not counted on the way in which the lens would let me take perfectly ordinary photos without having to stand up to my knees…

An interloper in the duck pond

The Bowring Park (link takes you to a pdf map and index of the park) duck pond, which has a fluctuating population of hundreds of mallard, black, pintail, and hybrid ducks, along with a few swans and half a New York city-block’s-worth of pigeons, currently also has a cormorant. They don’t usually hang out in…