I postponed my visit Fontenelle Forest this morning to avoid the rain and mud so I'll never know what opportunities that I missed before noon. My afternoon visit was amazing.
I had barely stepped out of the parking lot before I spotted a Swainson's Thrush. I didn't even have my camera out so I had to stop to take it out of my backpack and assemble it. Amazingly, the Thrush patiently waited.
Just past the Thrush was a pool of rainwater with a bathing sparrow. I took a couple of shots and the sparrow was replaced by an American Redstart. A Rose-breasted Grosbeak couple were frolicking out of camera range another 20 yards down the trail. In less than 100 yards, I saw three birds for the first time this year.
As I turned onto the Stream trail, I encountered a young lady and her dog. Apparently she missed the sign that said dogs were not allowed. So much for stealth on my part, the dog was flushing everything in sight.
While I waited for things to settle back down, I observed my first Kingbird of the year. I also saw a muskrat with a mouth full of grass swimming back to its home.
I didn't see a single Green-backed Heron in the forest last year. Today was the day. I'm always amazed at how different the same bird can look. Compare these two views of the same bird.
The weather started to turn while I photographed the gaggle of goslings.
A Yellow Warbler played hide and seek with my lens. Unfortunately the winds became strong and dark clouds were bringing rain. The dead trees from the 2011 flood are a real hazard when the wind blows so I need to return to a safe and dry place.