Early Spring means melting snow and exposed fields, melting ice and open water. Wild animals, many struggling to survive, seize the opportunity to feed and recover. Others continue their journey northward as habitats and food sources become available. Photographers are also recovering and more mobile. After months of donning multiple layers, feeding the wood stove and hunkering down in storms, seeing winter in the rear-view mirror is a joyous occasion!
Melt water enhancing a small stream and waterfalls in the hills
Gull foraging in puddled melt water in a harvested corn field
A pair of Wood Ducks at rest in a temporary pond (same as above)
Canada Goose heading for its nesting territory in a cattail marsh
Canada geese at rest
Great Blue Heron silhouette, one of two flying northward
Open water in lakes and ponds means Osprey can go fishing!
Large numbers of hungry deer are foraging in cultivated fields; these were alarmed by a barking dog but won’t go far.
Just beyond the south end of the Morrisville State College campus lies the college aquaculture facility, a small stream and a short nature trail. It’s close to home and a place I visit often to walk, observe and photograph. This site rarely disappoints, but yesterday was uneventful – until I happened to catch a glimpse of two birds moving quickly across the blue sky. They were too high and far away for details, but it appeared to be a Common Crow harassing a large bird of prey. As luck would have it, the raptor circled in my direction and I was able to capture the moment before they circled up and away.
The bird in question was an Osprey. The crook in the wings during flight and black patches at the bend in the wings (“wrists”) were diagnostic. Ospreys are fish-eating birds and it’s quite possible that this bird was investigating the outdoor ponds at the fish hatchery.