It had been many weeks since I walked the trails in Holden Arboretum, one of my many regular routines that changed when Covid 19 entered the scene. Finally, last Friday, I decided it had been too long, so I packed up my camera and headed to Holden.
Except to say that Holden didn’t disappoint, I don’t have many words to share. Sometimes pictures are better than words.
…And it felt really good to be back on those trails! That’s it for this blog post. I hope you enjoyed the pictures
See you soon with another post from the trail. ~Trail Walker.
The trees in our backyard provide plenty of shade and shelter…for the birds as well as for me, as I park myself on the patio with my camera. I have spent many hours out there this summer, accompanied by the blue birds, house sparrows, bumble bees (If that’s not the right name for the species of busy, buzzy bee pictured in this blog post, please correct me), and many other birds. Of the many visitors, the house sparrows are probablydefinitely my least favorite. Although I am struggling, yes, I actually said struggling, to develop a better attitude toward them, I haven’t made much progress. There are far too many house sparrows, and although I appreciate most birds, I’ve yet to discover the charm of the house sparrows. They tend to take over the nesting boxes, and my antipathy toward them goes back a couple of years when I discovered that they had destroyed the bluebird eggs I was hoping would hatch and provide some juvenile bird entertainment. The only positive thing I will say about house sparrows is that they pose nicely for pictures!
And finally, to end this post, some birdbath entertainment by the American robin!
. Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you have enjoyed your visit.
Backyard birding has become a time consuming pastime this summer; in part because we haven’t traveled very far from our backyard, but also because many avian visitors have come to call. I have accumulated so many bird blips right outside our back door that they are beginning to overwhelm me; it’s definitely time to kick start my neglected hobby and get back to posting some backyard bird blogs. In this post, you can see some of my least favorite backyard birds along with several of my favorites. See if you can identify the pileated woodpecker (a favorite), multiple house sparrows (least favorites!), and my most favorite, the Eastern bluebird.
That’s it for this post because I’ve run out of time. But it’s a start, and I’ll be back soon with more backyard birds.
When summer rolls around, a familiar bird in our backyard is the Baltimore oriole pictured above. One glance at her beak as she zooms through the backyard is enough to tell you the oriole has recently enjoyed a taste of the grape jelly in the backyard buffet.
Hummingbirds, another common bird in Northeast Ohio during the summer months, are anatomically much better suited for sipping sugar water. Some sections of the country are visited by a much greater variety of hummers, but here, on the southern shore of Lake Erie, we only see the ruby-throat. On this male, you can see a faint hint of his ruby necklace.
The Eastern bluebird is another summer resident, a favorite of mine, and a bird that we sometimes even see in colder months..
Raising baby bluebirds can be a challenge for the parents. In the top left picture of the collage below, the little one is making a lot of noise, demanding his dried mealworms. They don’t look very appealing to me, but bluebirds love them, and this baby is hungry. Responding to his demands, Papa Bluebird picks up a mealworm from the ground and flies up to feed Junior. The last picture in the collage, shows Junior alone after his meal is over. It won’t be too long before they repeat the same routine. Mama Bluebird was nowhere to be seen when I took these pictures. Maybe Juniors demands wore her out, and she was taking a rest in the nesting box at our neighbor’s house when the little family lives when they are not flying around the neighborhood.
More bluebird pictures
Young male bluebird
Bluebirds enjoying the garden
This large woodpecker is sometimes called the Woody Woodpecker bird because the familiar cartoon character is modeled after him. I can hear him coming because he loudly announces his arrival as he flies through the treetops and into our backyard. He is likely to arrive at any time of the day, and you would think that the cartoon Woody has jumped off the screen and come for a meal.
Thanks for stopping by today.
That’s it for this backyard bird post. Part two will be posted soon. If you like birds, come back to check it out!
In my blip yesterday, I wrote about the possibility of a freeze overnight and what that might do to my daffs. Well, we did have a freeze. First thing this morning I asked Alexa for a weather report. When she said it was 32 degrees, I dressed warmly, picked up my camera, and headed out back to see how the daffs were doing. To my delight, they had survived the cold and were already beginning to perk up, as you can see from these pictures.
That could have been enough excitement for so early in the morning, but there was more to come. Waiting for my breakfast toast to pop up, I noticed a flash of blue outside the window. Bluebirds!!! Anyone who has followed my blog, will remember how excited I get when a bluebird appears at my backyard buffet. I picked up my camera which is always close at hand, but I was too slow and the bluebird vanished before I captured his picture. There was a handsome bluejay sitting among the daffodils, but what I really wanted was at least one photo of a bluebird. Disappointed, I went back to munching on my morning toast.
And then, almost magically, the bluebird reappeared. This time Bob spotted it, and I got my photo opp of the day: Several of them in fact!
To top off the morning’s photoshoot, a rosy-red house finch posed for his portrait!
As my British photographer friends on Blipfoto might say, I was chuffed!*
*Chuffed: slang for pleased, delighted; flattered; very excited
That’s it for this blog post. I’ll be back in a few days with another post, and I hope you will join me.
At the end of an off-and-on rainy Sunday afternoon, just as I was watching out the kitchen window, this little finch popped in for a bite to eat. The weather has been variable today. Neither people nor wildlife knew what was going to come at them next, so most of the day they sheltered in dry quarters.
Of course, because of Covid-19, there weren’t too many places the people could go, and the birds apparently weren’t keen on the weather. Maybe tomorrow the sun will shine.
Thanks for braving the uncertain weather and visiting me today.
At home, during the covid-19 lockdown here in northeast Ohio, I can’t gather with my (human) friends for a cup of coffee (or a mug of cocoa, my preferred beverage). So this morning I turned to my backyard friends for entertainment, and the pileated woodpeckers didn’t let me down. They flew in, and hung around for 10-15 minutes, solo and in pairs, giving me enough time to snap some pictures to share with you.
Whoops, not always adept at holding on.
But when food is on the menu, they will persevere and find a tasty tidbit of suet.
Appetites satisfied, they launch themselves off the feeder and fly back to the tall tree…
And eventually move on to another neighborhood. If we’re lucky they will return this evening (or the next time they get hungry). If we’re very lucky, the bluebirds will come by. I haven’t seen them for ages, but, as they say, hope springs eternal. Meanwhile, I don’t know what you are doing for entertainment these days, but if you enjoy watching the birds come back for another visit to see what flies in.
Thanks for stopping by today.
~Trail Walker (aka Carolyn L.)
On January 1, 2020, I captured a few back yard bird pictures to start off the new decade. Happily, the first bird to pose was an Eastern bluebird, sitting proudly on top of the nesting box and then flying over for a second photo opp on the nearby shepherd’s crook.
A familiar downy woodpecker and a cheerful little titmouse also showed up for their first photo opp of the decade.
Later in the afternoon, before sitting down for our traditional pork chops, sauerkraut, and mashed potatoes, we decided to start 2020 with a trail walk in Chagrin River Park. That’s where I captured the rest of our new year’s day pictures. Taking the trail that led us to the river overlook, we followed it for an easy 2.5 miles until it eventually led us back to the fire pit.
Several deer on the hillside
Bench by the river
We weren’t the only trail walkers.
About 2.5 miles after we set out, the trail led us back to the Chagrin River.
There were quite a few other trail walkers enjoying the chilly afternoon; most of them were walking dogs, but nobody was warming up around the fire. Because it was beginning to die out, Bob picked up a couple of logs and built up the fire before we headed for home. Thanks to the fresh air and exercise, we were ready for our sauerkraut and pork chops.
Happy New Year friends and fellow trail walkers.
May 2020 be a good year for you!
Hello trail walkers! In my last post, I told you that the time has come to open the closet and sort out my hats, gloves, and hand warmers if I intend to continue trail walking, now that early Autumn has morphed into chilly winter weather. Last week we experienced our first snowfall, a real one that required boots, and stayed on the ground for three days. Most of the trees have lost their leaves, and even the wildlife is feeling the pinch of winter. Although our park rangers frown on walkers doling out treats, a man I passed on the trail today told me the chickadees and titmice were following him down the trail, complaining loudly because he hadn’t brought enough seeds to share, and his pockets were empty.
A few of the pictures in this post are from Chagrin River Park, although most of them were taken in our yard.
The birds in our neighborhood were happy that I had replenished the food supply in their back yard buffet. (Click on any picture below to see a larger version)
Bluebirds like dried mealworms.
Both male and female bluebirds visited this week.
Northern cardinal at the seed cylinder.
It looks like he is protecting his mate.
And so does the red-bellied woodpecker.
Sparrow in the grass
Bluebird on top of the mealworm station.
Bluejays like perching on this feeder.
Mr. and Mrs. Bluebird
This bluejay is announcing his satisfaction.
It was chilly on the trail today;
It’s time to order some handwarmers!
Autumn turned a corner this morning. From lovely, colorful, walk-in-the-arboretum weather, we suddenly transitioned to overcast, drizzly, sit-in-front-of-the-computer-processing-last week’s-pictures weather. The picture above was taken last week on the trail in Chagrin River Park, just a mile from my front door. Because of the aforementioned weather, I’m taking a pass on my trail walk today, so here are a few more pictures from last week’s walk. Not totally devoid of color, they are definitely on the downhill side of Autumn, headed toward winter.
Nevertheless, I will drag out my winter hat, gloves, boots, and hand warmers so I can continue taking trail walks. There will still be some sunny days ahead. For that matter, I don’t mind walking in the snow, although during winter, sunshine is at a premium this close to Lake Erie, where gray, overcast skies are the norm! But, whatever the weather, I need the exercise, so I will continue trail walking and capturing pictures!