May 25, 2015

 

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water...



Forget snakes on a plane, there are snakes in the water.
We were out on the pontoon looking for shorebirds when Anne spotted something swimming towrds the boat.
Initial reaction was that was the fastest turtle we had ever seen.
As it came closer it turned into a snake.
It would swim on the surface, dive and resurface.
Rondeau's own little Loch Ness
monster.

It's hard to tell but it may be a eastern fox snake. We have seen them in the water before.

If you can help with the id I would appreciate.
It could also be a northern water snake.

Assuming it is an eastern fox it is -
Pantherophis gloydi

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May 20, 2015

 

Get out of my bath!



We have a pair of brown thrashers that come to our yard most days.
We think they are nesting close by.
Today they showed up together and one wasn't happy when the other tried to join them in the pond.

Toxostoma rufum

An aggressive defender of its nest, the Brown Thrasher is known to strike people and dogs hard enough to draw blood.

The oldest Brown Thrasher on record was at least 11 years, 11 months old. It was recaptured and then re-released at a Florida banding station.

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May 19, 2015

 

Another prothonotary



These pretty little warblers are being cooperative this year.
They can be seen most days on the Tulip Tree Trail in Rondeau Provincial Park.

Protonotaria citrea

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May 18, 2015

 

Now that's a mouthful.



This female Baltimore oriole took some of the nesting material that anne puts out for the birds.
It is empty woven seed bags.

It is interesting to watch them come to the feeders with their mouths full and then try to eat.
The often leave half the nesting material behind

Icterus galbula

Unlike robins and many other fruit-eating birds, Baltimore Orioles seem to prefer only ripe, dark-colored fruit. Orioles seek out the darkest mulberries, the reddest cherries, and the deepest-purple grapes, and will ignore green grapes and yellow cherries even if they are ripe.

source - Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

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May 17, 2015

 

Balancing Act



Female ruby throated hummingbird at the oriole feeder.

We have had males for about 2 weeks and the females have started arriving.

Let the games begin.

Archilochus colubris

The Ruby-throated Hummingbird beats its wings about 53 times a second.
The oldest known Ruby-throated Hummingbird was 9 years 1 month old.

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May 14, 2015

 

Upstanding.



This great horned owl chick is in still in the nest. It's sibling left yesterday and is somewhere else in the tree.

The nest appears to be a broken branch in the shape of a bowl.

Bubo virginianus

When clenched, a Great Horned Owl’s strong talons require a force of 28 pounds to open. The owls use this deadly grip to sever the spine of large prey.

The oldest Great Horned Owl on record was at least 28 years old when it was found in Ohio in 2005.

source - Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

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May 13, 2015

 

A failed strategy.

If I do this you can't swallow me.



Actually he can and did.
We watched a garter snake take about 15 minutes to swallow an
American toad.
At this point the toad spread his legs as far as it could in an effort to get free.

Seen while we were out bird watching.

The horned snake of Rondeau.

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