The Notorious Squirrel

#Animals, #Birding, #Nature, #Photography

Notorious

At this particular time I abide peacefully with my neighbors, and that is how I would like it to remain. If this disreputable squirrel has its way, our peaceful state of harmony could be broken.

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So, this ball of twine originates in my neighbor’s yard, Mr squirrel brought it over the fence, to our yard, anchored it beneath our patio table and then twisted it around one of our lounge chairs.

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He then ran back and forth, filling his mouth with the twine, breaking some off and taking it off to his nest.

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Hopefully my neighbor has enough sense to know that I would not try to claim his twine by wrapping it around our patio furnisher.

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Hostile Take Over Of The Flicker Family

#Animals, #Birding, #Nature, #Photography

It was just another day as usual, with The Flickers taking turns removing the unwanted trash from their home. You can see the debris around his head, and the brown, just at the bottom right  of the picture.

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After a while, Mrs Flicker came by to see if her mate was keeping on top things, in the making of their home.

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As soon as Mr Flicker saw his mate, he flew the coop, in search of rest and relaxation.

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Off he went.

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Then the unthinkable happened. It happened so quickly, that I missed the actual take over.

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The Starling must have been observing the Flickers upgrade their home, and he waited till one flew away, then he took his chance at the take over. He flew right into the nest, flushing The Flicker out, and he simply took over their home. The poor Flicker is left on the outside, patiently trying to oust the bully.

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So this is how I left the Flicker Family….fighting to keep what is rightfully theirs. Perhaps the battle is still ongoing.

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Cormorants

#Birding, #Nature, #Photography

Being out in nature on a regular basis tends to make you more observant; more aware of your surroundings. All the birds I saw flying overhead before looked the same, but not any more. I am now able to distinguish shapes of wings and sounds.

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Cormorants in tree

I remember seeing these birds for the first time and wondered what they were. The people I met along the trail, would enlighten me about the Cormorants and their habits.

Most people speak of these birds with disdain, and I would soon see the reason why. As my hubby and I wandered along the paths, we would spot trees that were clean of any leaves, and looked as though they were about to die, we were told, that it was the doing of the Cormorants.

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Apparently there is something in the droppings of the Cormorants, and it will kill the trees. This tree still had a few leaves  on it at the time the picture was taken, but I’m sure it will probably remain bare this year.

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Cormorant high up in a tree

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Undeterred By The Gray

#Animals, #Birding, #Gardens, #Nature, #Photography

Gray

Today the Daily Post Word was Gray, and it just happened to be a very gray, wet and rainy  day out. In the afternoon the rain subsided and we were able to venture away from the skyscrapers, to see the blooming trees.

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Nothing was going to stop us on this day, and even though the skies remained gray, the blooms remained bright.

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Cherry Blossoms

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The water also reflected the gray in the sky.

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Wood Duck


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Male & Female Wood Ducks

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The Magnolia is also just about ready to bloom.

These Photos were taken in High Park Toronto

So Long Hooty

#Animals, #Birding, #Nature, #Photography, #Raptors

So Hooty was the Barred Owl that frequented one of our trails this past winter. He, or She was given that name by a walking group that would see him just about every Monday morning.

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One morning my friend and I went out to see if Hooty was anywhere around, but I took one look at the trail and I would not have gone any further, however another photographer that was there, seeing my dilemma, ran to his truck, got me a pair of ice grippers so I could but on the bottom of my boots. Then I was able to walk on the icy trails, and get a close look at this beautiful Barred Owl.

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It is so amazing the length of time that Hooty would stay close to us. What’s also amazing was the focus of the photographers. Every one was silent, then at times there might be a low chatter, but if Hooty made the slightest move, the focus and quietness was back on again, in hopes of getting a flight shot. After thinking that Hooty may never move, he stretched a little.IMG_5713 Barred Owl copy

One Sunday evening, Hooty flew close to the side of the road and sat on a post close by.

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The below picture is Hooty enjoying a snowy day.

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The last two photos were taken a few years back. IMG_3832 Barred Owl copy.jpg

This last photo is the closest I’ve come to getting a flight shot….maybe next year!!

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Daily Potion October 19, 2016

#Birding, #Christianity, #Nature

God Given Instinct

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Headed South

Well it’s that season again, and if you’re a nature lover you can’t help but watch as the birds take off for the warmer climates. It’s amazing to watch them do certain things purely by instinct, like in the spring time when the female goes off to collect straw to build her nest while the male stands watch near by as her protector.

While out the other day, we saw many birds flying in a south westerly direction, making the most of the wind I suppose. One thing we noticed was, that just about every bird we saw were flying in large groups. The picture above shows a large group of male Red Wing Black Birds. I wonder where the females are at this point, if the are out in front or if they are behind. Perhaps the female Red Wings are behind, while the males are out front to fight off any predator. Even though they may often fight amongst themselves, when a predator shows up they all come together to fight it off.

So often as human beings we seem to forget the instinct that God has given. We try to fight off the enemy in our own strength; we also don’t seem to be able to work as a team, and so we continue to fail; this can happen in our personal lives or in the church.

Perhaps one day we will all be able to learn and take in the lessons from nature.

FROM THE MOUNTAIN TO THE MEADOW

#Birding, #Christianity, #Nature, #Photography

Apparently this Mountain Bluebird is usually found in much higher terrain, like its name suggest, but just lately it has been found hanging out in the lowland and meadows of Ontario. Quite a rare sight.

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Mountain Bluebird

It’s such a small bird and if you don’t know it’s there you can miss it. Me and my friend stumbled upon this scene…..cars lined a quiet street and the occupants, about 20+ photographers appeared to be standing in a meadow with their cameras pointed at nothing…..or so we thought. We would not be the only ones to think that way. Two road workers drove by and stopped to ask, “What on earth is everyone looking at?” Then someone rode by on his bicycle and asked….”Are aliens about to land or something?” lol!!

I suppose it looked odd to see between 20-30 photographers and birders standing, and apparently looking at nothing.

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Mountain Bluebird looking for grubs

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Mountain Bluebird in flight.

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THE WILD LIFE

#Christianity, #Nature, #Raptors

Before I took up Wildlife Photography, I thought myself to be a very patient person. I now know that this is not so. Perhaps there are many lessons to be learned from this hobby.

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Juvenile Bald Eagle

Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap, nor gather in barns; Yet your heavenly Father feeds they. Are you not more valuable than they? Matthew 6:26

God wants us to have faith in Him. He wants us to believe that whatever our needs are, they will be supplied by Him. Not only are we to wait on Him, but we are to also pray “Give us this day our daily bread.” Matthew 6:11. To wait on the Lord does not mean that one will just sit and wait, it means that whatever we do, we will be doing it under His guidance, and in order to be guided by God, we would have to be connected to Him through prayer.

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The Catch of the Day

My eyes shall be on the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me; He who walks in a perfect way, He shall serve me. Psalm 101: 6 Only the faithful ones who serve God will dwell with Him in eternity.

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Purposeful Walking

Freedom is our reward for having a closer walk with God.

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Freedom to Fly

Scriptures taken from New King James Version (NKJV)