Meet Lou

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Meet Lou the sweetest, oh well, the only male duck on a small pond close to home. Lou is married to Sue who we deduce is sitting on a nest full of eggs at the moment. Lou is courteous and polite and protective of Sue in just the right way.

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He always prefers to make sure Sue has finished eating before he takes his meals. Standing guard and keeping his eyes open for predators.

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Lou is amenable to having his portrait taken and over the course of a month or two we have indeed taken a few. A fine looking guy with a personality that is hard to beat.

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So, meet Lou, the best male duck on the whole pond.

On the cattails

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A week or two back we watched this Black-capped Chickadee mercilessly ripping apart these fluffy cattails near a riverbank close to home. We had heard that Chickadees sometimes use this fluff as material for their nests however this birds was discarding the wonderful fluff and letting it fly into the wind.

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We figured they must be foraging for food. Perhaps Seeds?

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This bird worked diligently but it was not seeds they were after. A small grub was their prize.

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Happy Friday and wishing you a wonderful weekend.

Green Heron

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We sat and watched this Green Heron as they slowly moved along the river bank and while we could see them they maintained constant cover in a tangle of dead branches and roots. After about 20 minutes they flew out into the open and landed on this tangle of roots in the river.

Amazing birds in that they can use tools to catch fish.

“The Green Heron is one of the world’s few tool-using bird species. It often creates fishing lures with bread crusts, insects, and feathers, dropping them on the surface of the water to entice small fish.”

That would be something amazing to see and something to keep an eye out for next time you spend some time observing one.

 

Red Breasted Merganser

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Looking fine as can be in his breeding plumage a male Red-Breasted Merganser swims quietly along in the cattails confidant he will attract a mate.

“Courting males salute a female with head held high and then curtsy to the female by tipping up and putting their rear in the air with bill held high. In response to the male’s gesture, the female often jabs him with her bill. Courting males also shake their head side to side to get the attention of a female. Once the female accepts the male she stretches her neck out while holding her bill down and then lowers her neck again in a bobbing motion. They form a monogamous bond for the breeding season, but the male takes off at the beginning of incubation, leaving the female to tend the young alone. Males head to secluded waters to molt their feathers before migrating south while females tend to molt near the breeding site.”  1

References:
1. The Cornell Laboratory of Orinthology, All about birds Website, https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Red-breasted_Merganser/lifehistory

A close second

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Earlier this week we featured the Mountain Chickadee who by our accounting is the most prevalent species hanging around our neighborhood this winter. A close second,  and perhaps on some days the most prevalent species, is the Red-Breasted Nuthatch. Sitting quietly in an old spruce this particular Nuthatch presented us a nice photo opportunity on a warm March afternoon. It won’t be long before they scatter to higher grounds and prepare for breeding season but until then we savor the opportunity to listen to their honk-honk-honk from the trees nearby.