Frogs and feathers

June 2, 2010

When navigating Huntley Meadows Park these days, be ready for a lot of vegetation.

Despite storms in the afternoon, Tuesday evening was nice in the park. The humidity was high, but the mosquito count was low.

Along the boardwalk, there were a number of frogs, including the Southern Leopard Frog and the American Bullfrog.

Those two species account for the first two photos above, but I’m not sure if the last is a different species, or just a pastel version of a bullfrog. Feel free to weigh in.

Forgive me if this a little morbid, but at the front of the boardwalk area, I noticed a dead bird and thought it was interesting.

I think it’s curious how it was not heavy enough to break through the water. Visually, I like the cleanness of the scene. The tones are nice. Now, if only we could repeat that more with animals that have a pulse… I digress.

Huntley Meadows is great for observing Red-winged Blackbirds, but usually it is the male that draws my attention. The males have the characteristic black bodies with red on the shoulder, and usually sing from the top of the reeds. The females do not follow the same color pattern and tend to stay low in the vegetation.

For some reason, they were a bit more adventurous on this outing.

For a short time, I watched a few females getting a better view of their surroundings.

Elsewhere along the boardwalk, a mother Mallard was milling about with her young.

The size of her remaining young is impressive and I’m guessing if those three have made it so far, they’ll be fine to make it to adulthood.

There are still an abundant number of muskrats, although I had a difficult time finding a cooperative subject.

They seemed more cautious as it approached dusk, possibly corresponding to the emergence of more predators.

In the same area, I watched two different raccoons, but was unable to get a photo. That’s the second time in recent visits that I’ve found raccoons moving through the reeds. I’ll keep trying and hopefully I’ll succeed sometime soon in getting the shot.

I also was shown an area where a partially concealed beaver was sitting on a mound of twigs and was told that it’s hung out there for a while. I’ll have to check back on it later.

In other news, perched for the first time, I saw the swallows I’ve previously described divebombing the wetlands. They are pretty nice looking!

3 Responses to “Frogs and feathers”

  1. Renee Says:

    Very nice shots! With all those frogs, that place must sound amazing at night!

  2. Evan Dyson Says:

    It really does!

  3. […] The birds were the same type of swallow photographed at the end of this earlier post. […]

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