20150525 Rainy Day trip to Parry Sound

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Yesterday we  poked around in the rain and went to Parry Sound via the (in)famous Skerryvore Community Road.

This Ring-billed Gull was very interested in the portable blind and came through the heavy rain for an inspection.




Raindrop on White Spruce tip in my driveway:


Yes, an instant later it did fall.  That drop looks like it was stretching before releasing. It would be neat to capture the separation in slow  motion.  (A challenge?)

I have photographed this triangle many times, every time different.  But composed the same every time.  Can you suggest a different composition?


I didn’t  risk a soaker in a wet peat bog to get this flower up close.  Notice the laurel leaves and very pretty 5-sepal blossom with those spots.  Very poisonous to livestock so it was first called Lambkill, Sheepkill, Pigkill etc.   Sheep Laurel.


Always on the trail of warbler, this American Redstart was a long ways away on this black ash tree, singing and gleaning insects.


After the American Restart left, this American Yellow Warbler started doing the same thing.  First time I’ve seen a Yellow in an ash tree as they usually frequent willows and poplars.


And finally a couple of scenic shots as the rain lightened up.   Big (Gereaux) Lake and Twin Rivers:





Nice countryside, even in the rain!



PS  I am going to continue to change the way I share these images with you.  Please check my emails to you for further information.



20150525 Some flying critters

Yesterday we spent some time amoung the black flies watching flying beasties…

A yellow rumped warbler was singing in the tag alders near Wrights Marina.



So was this Gray Catbird:



The red at the back of the crown identifies this as a Hairy Woodpecker. (Compare with Downy and Yellow Bellied Sapsucker)


This Red Admiral was flitting about:


This fellow was right out of Hitchcock’s  “Birds” as he made a low recce pass:


And there were many of these Chalk-fronted Corporals ( neat to see where that Wikipedia image was shot, eh?) on the Forest Access Road:


Rain is forecast here all day, so it will be interesting to see its effect on the birdies and insects.

Have a good week!




20150524 Local Butterfly, flowers and birdies

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Yesterday we had breakfast at French River with ex-airforce buddy Kip.  Good reminiscences.

On the way back we detoured via Key River and the Forest Access Road to see some sights.

An uncommon, for me, Silvery Blue butterfly:


Jack-in-the-pulpit, behind Camp Dore:


Interesting reflection of Marsh Marigolds along Hwy 522:


The Canada Columbines are nearing their peak of blooming.  The link shows the relationship between Columbines and migrating hummingbirds and hawkmoths. I know of a good bunch across the highway and will spend some time there today looking for hummingbirds.  It would be nice to photo a ruby throat near these beautiful flowers.  Forecast high is 24ºC with no wind so I might get lucky!   : )


On my way to supper at the D. & M., with daughter J., I saw this American Yellow Warbler flitting around in a willow:

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J was very helpful in sharing her experience as a book author, publisher, educator and blogger.   Now all I have to do is implement her advice.  Easier said than done as I struggled with changing the theme of this blog.  Having difficulty learning the interface.  I need practice but more importantly I need a better understanding of the structure  of this blogging system.  Experimentation seems to be the secret!

At this stage, this blog is almost as quick as dashing off an email with attachments.   The advantage for you is that you can get  much better quality images (if you chose to click on them) and you don’t have your email clogging up!

Lots to learn, eh, Jessica?

20150523 Yesterday’s trip to Parry Sound via Skerryvore

Second  instalment to this blog in the “modern age”.

Experimenting with mass uploading, use of captioning and minimal text insertion.

Mass uploading reverses the order of taking the images.  Hmmm?

Click on the image to enlarge, then use the back button on your Browser to return to the blog.

Great Northern Heron along Hwy 69

Great Northern Heron along Hwy 69

This is usually a good road for wildlife: bears, deer, moose and birdies.

Along Skerryvore  Community  Road.

Along Skerryvore Community Road.

Pincherries and Maples in bloom along Skerryvore community road.

Pincherries and Maples in bloom along Skerryvore community road.

Last of the Grandiflora

Last of the Grandiflora

Proud parents

Proud parents

Northern Wild Raisin about to bloom

Northern Wild Raisin about to bloom

Last of the Wake Robins

Last of the Wake Robins

Running out of time, have a breakfast date!

Gonna Publish and see what happens.


20150521 Out and about on Thursday

Last evening I tried to use the truck as a portable blind to sneak up on some Sandhill Cranes.

It didn’t work out too well:

After enjoying a good breakfast at the French River Restaurant with friends who assisted, we detoured a bit on the return.

Common Grackle Grundy Lake PP boundary with Hwy 522

Elusive American Redstart singing in a tree near Jamot Lumber Road:

Re:  Warblers singing….

You might be interested in this website.   as a useful tool to ID warblers by sound.  On one page warblers are listed with the Flash player symbol.  Click on the symbol, then click on “listen” to hear the birdsong.  An easy way to compare Yellow Warblers with Chestnut-sided, with American (or Painted) Redstarts, and with Yellow-rumped…. (photographed so far this spring.)  Here is another version of the eNature.com website set up for Eastern Canada Wood Warblers.  Again click on the Flash player symbol to get to the birdsongs.

Blanding’s turtle in a roadside ditch let me get one photo ….
… before deciding to leave:

These violets are prolific along the south, shady side of that lumber road.  Very few on the sunny side of the road.  Amazing effect of sun on the ecology.

New butterfly for me, IIRC:  American Lady.   Another good site: Butterflies of Ontario.
Range: Resident in the southern United States, Mexico, and Central America south to Colombia. Migrates to and temporarily colonizes the northern United States, southern Canada, the West Indies, and Europe. Rare stray to Newfoundland and Labrador.
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Delicate petals of the Amelanchier canadensis are at their prime now.

The Canada Columbine is a photographers challenge, which I like to take up!!
(Yes, R.T., the background is a bit distracting. But it does illustrate the typical rocky habitat of the Columbine.   Always a tricky artistic/scientific decision, eh?)

And the ubiquitous Pin Cherry is lots of fun…

Frost tomorrow morning and Saturday morning.  We have beautifully clear cA air over us now.

Apparently due to a “Rex Block” (Thanks, A.Y.) …
which has to be hard on bird/butterfly spring migration north of the Great Lakes.


Off to Parry Sound tomorrow, via the side roads!  : )