28 March 2016

Spring has Sprung

Last week the vernal equinox marked the official start of astronomical spring and some of the animals in the neighborhood have "spring fever". The gobblers are starting to strut for the hen turkeys as they gear up for the mating season.

This gobbler is hanging close to a flock of hens.

27 March 2016

Babysitting Myra

It was our pleasure to babysit our granddaughter, Myra, for the past week while her mother, Nikki, was attending a military conference in Washington, DC. Myra, is now 7 months old and has started crawling (and exploring).

Myra is now eating solid food and loves it.

She likes to finish her meals with a dill pickle.

After a day of exploring and eating, its story time.

Myra is back with her mother and our house is strangely quiet now.

18 March 2016

Wildflower - Coltsfoot

The early spring wildflowers are starting to appear and today I spotted some bright yellow flowers along Joyce Road. At first I thought it was the ever abundant dandelions but I soon realized it was Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara).

Although coltsfoot flowers resemble dandelion blossoms, the two plants are easily distinguished by their stems. Coltsfoot has red scales along its flower stems, while dandelion flower stems are completely smooth. Coltsfoot prefers cool, damp clay soil but can also grow in full sun. It grows along stream banks and dirt roads

17 March 2016

The Frogs are Croaking

The signs of spring can be seen and heard throughout the neighborhood. The annual chorus of the Wood Frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus) and peepers have started.

I could hear these frogs a couple of hundred yards away as I opened the gate at our cabin property. Wood Frogs are the first frogs of spring to emerge from ponds and start their mating season.

This frog has had enough partying and was heading away from the pond and into the bushes to look for food.

16 March 2016


I was checking Wysox Creek today and found this small flock of common mergansers (Mergus merganser) swimming next to the bridge. These fish-eating ducks are found in small streams where they will swim up streams as a group looking for fish and crustaceans.

Female common mergansers (left) have a tufted red-brown head with its back and sides silver-gray and the breast and belly are white. The male common mergansers (right) have a greenish-black crested head and upper neck. The lower neck, breast and underside are creamy-white.

14 March 2016

Bald Eagle

I often look downstream from the Wysox Creek bridge to see if any ducks are in the water and was surprised to see a Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) in the creek.

We watched the eagle for 5 or 6 minutes as it waded in the creek and got a drink.

It must have been a slow day of fishing and the eagle took off.

12 March 2016

Another sign of Spring

This week's warm weather has the Crocus blooming and the Honey Bees busy.

Crocus are some of the first flowers of spring and add some bright color to the otherwise dull landscape.

10 March 2016

Spring House Cleaning

The warm weather this week prompted me to clean out the Blue Bird houses along the road to our cabin.

The bird houses were packed full of grass and sticks, but most of the bird houses were already occupied.

The bird houses were occupied with 2 to 3 Deer Mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) which weren't happy with the spring cleaning.

Deer mice are named so because of their color pattern resembling that of a deer. They have a brown body with a white underbelly and feet.

08 March 2016

Bees are Buzzing

It's the first week of March and the temperature climbed to 63°F today. The warm weather had the honey bees out looking for food, but without any flowers blooming yet the honey bees were hitting our bird feeder for food.

Five or six honey bees in the feeder and kicking seeds out. The bees emptied about half of the seed from the feeder.

"In coming ... is there room for one more?"

"How do you open these things?"

05 March 2016

Holly Berries

Still no major snow here, but there was enough of a dusting to add some color to the Holly bush at our house. By the afternoon the snow was gone.

04 March 2016


There hasn't been a lot of animal activity in the neighborhood this winter or maybe it's been harder to spot and track the animals without snow on the ground. I'm starting to see more turkey activity this week and had a large flock of 30 to 40 birds in the field this afternoon.

Part of the flock as they walked into the woods to roost.

02 March 2016

A sign of Spring

Some Canada Geese have returned to Miner's Pond and are looking for nesting sites. The geese returned to the pond as soon as the first "open water" appeared on the back edge of the pond.

Within a day the ice had disappeared from the pond and more geese, and some ducks, were swimming on the pond.

A couple of Canada Geese enjoying a swim on the pond.