Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tunkwa Lake - May 2009 - Part 4

Sunday morning dawned bright and sunny again, although temperatures had dropped down to freezing again over night. While we enjoyed our morning coffee, Shantz (on the extreme right) enjoyed her version of husky television - the small brown dot on the left........
This, folks, is just one of the reasons why owners of Siberian Huskies don't let their dogs run free, but keep them on a leash at all times. No, they aren't 'part wolf' - they just retain a really strong hunting instinct, in fact they are perfectly capable of fending for themselves....something we have to keep in mind at all times!

Today the object being stalked was this Yellow Bellied Marmot that would shortly dive into it's metal culvert.....

This morning our walk was headed in a slightly different direction. This picture shows the spillway between Tunkwa and Leighton Lakes. We are heading over to that dark ridge.

This view better shows the area. That little hillside is where the Bald Eagles nest, in fact is a very 'birdy' place - we wouldn't have time to explore it this trip......

One of the many Killdeer in the area led the way along the well beaten path......

Yes, we're still coming!

When you reach the crest of the hill, this is the sight in front of you. This pond area is always alive with birds. The song of Marsh Wren and the not so melodious call of the Yellow Headed Blackbirds greet you.

There is always all sorts of waterfowl.....this day, lots of American Coot, many many Lesser Scaup ducks, some Northern Shovelers, Canvasbacks, Ruddy Ducks, even some Red Heads.

We even saw a pair of Wilson's Phalarope wading in the water.

That grove of Aspen trees on the right hand side was our ultimate destination.

This Aspen grove is a veritable avian nursery! Every cavity nesting bird in the area nests here. This visit, it was a bit early yet but sit yourself down sometime in June and just watch the activity that takes place!

There were dozens of excited Tree Swallows checking out all the sites. A female sticks her head out of this one.....

and a pair excitedly comment over the merits of this one! We also saw European Starling and Northern Flicker....later there will be Mountain Bluebirds and Red Naped Sapsucker joining the party....and who knows what else!

Unfortunately, for us, this visit had to come to an end, so we reluctantly started back to camp and ultimately, to home.

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