Sunday, May 25, 2008

Camera shy

This weekend has brought us long-overdue sunshine and warmth.
And, finally, days to go walking and watching.
But, try as I might to catch more than a glimpse--the leafy woods hide them well.

A Great Blue Heron flaps off clumsily from the pond, toward the woods--no doubt, I have disturbed his frog breakfast, as I approach.
On the bank, a muddy trail is the only evidence that Mama muskrat was here, just moments ago, gathering greens for her kits. She hits the water with a PLOP. Deep swirls disturb the surface.
Above me in the apple tree, a White-eyed Vireo dances from branch to branch gleaning insects.

The shadowy shapes of five snapping turtles have gathered in the shallow arm of water. They see surprisingly well--and vanish instantly, as I stand watching. In the woods, a thin gray shape leaves quietly. The coyote, perhaps, not used to my being here. The last weeks of rain have kept me away more than I like. He must think these trails are his own.

A Field Sparrow is feeding her family this morning.

Hidden in the tall growth beneath the small oaks, they answer her calls. I see nothing but the slightest movement in the grass, as they find each other--and she flies up and away for more.

The tree frogs are calling loudly from Little Pond pool. This wet spring pleases them.

On its surface, damsel flies catching the morning sunlight.

And a Yellow-breasted Chat calling from across the field.
Maybe another day's watching will find him.
Maybe not.

Cope's Gray Tree Frogs

Nearly the only residents not camera shy today.

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Lisa at Greenbow said...

I think you did a mighty fine job of finding models today. White-eyed Vireos are notorious for keeping themselves just out of sight.

Pat - An Arkansas Stamper said...

Your photographs are beautiful, as usual, and your narrative borders on pure poetry! Lovely, lovely!

mon@rch said...

Love the vireo but my heart is with the Tree Frog! They are such the cutest little froggies!

nina said...

You know, I can't tell if I should credit them with being more intelligent or less than the "average" frog.
They seem very interested in people. These would have stayed right in my hand all day, i think, looking back at me and turning their heads as I walked around.

Yes, the vireo is a gift--never heard or seen in the yard before!

Mary said...

I would love to walk with you day, Nina. Your photos are beautiful, especially the field sparrow.

I'll show you a friendly Green tree frog this week :o) Precious.

NCmountainwoman said...

Sometimes the most satisfying walks are those in which the animals and birds "slip" away from us and we see only glimpses of them.

Lovely photos.

Old Wom Tigley said...

Excellent walk non the less. Maybe you will catch sight of more next time. What you did see is all new to me apart from the damselfly.

Eco Enthusiast said...

These photos are quite nice. I have never seen a red-eyed vireo but I wonder if they might be around here.

That gray tree frog is quite interesting--don't think I have seen one of those either.

I love your blog!

Wendy said...

Awww - loved that little tree frog!