Arquivos de periódicos de janeiro 2013

03 de janeiro de 2013

Arcadia Trail Park, 2013-01-02

Have been walking this park and taking pictures most every day that I have been in Fort Worth in 2012. Thought that I would add some notes to pictures this year. Today was very quiet in the park, few birds around. It was in the upper 30s, light north/north west breeze.It was the day that the city mowers came out to mow down our tall grass prairie area. This happens every four years since fire cannot be done safely here. Hope that creatures living in the field were able to get out of the way. It did seem that most of the birds that normally are in the trees bordering the prairie left for the day. The only birds seen were a mockingbird and some mallards in White's Creek.

Publicado em 03 de janeiro de 2013, 05:20 AM por taogirl taogirl | 1 observação | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

04 de janeiro de 2013

Discouraging news

For several years we have had a resident beaver in our little creek, affectionately known as Bob the Builder. He graced me with his presence once, unfortunately on a day a day I did not have my camera. His head popped up in the creek and he stared at me for several seconds before continuing on. Yesterday I was told that our PID 6 officer said Bob had been killed by some kids in the park. We are trying to educate the people who live around this park that we are fortunate to have this wildlife refuge within suburbia but ignorance and sometimes just plain cruelty occur. Snakes are routinely killed by too many people here. I was also told that the Supervisor of the crew that mowed our tall grass prairie wants to "clean out" all the undergrowth along the creek, the briars and the growth that protects and feeds so many of our wild creatures. We will have to stay alert to protect this environment. Apparently the crew that was here to mow the grassland also went into other areas and took down bushes and cattails where turtles had gone to lay their eggs. Sometimes it is very frustrating...

On the other side of things, there were a lot of birds in the park today. The Red-tailed Hawk seemed to be appreciative of the mowed grasslands that now made it even easier to spot prey. There were many Myrtle yellow-rumped Warblers, Carolina Chicadees, American Goldfinch, and Mallards along with the usual Blue Jays, Mockingbirds, Robins, Cardinals, and White-winged Doves. I am hearing a lot of bird songs that I don't recognize. If I could learn these songs I am sure there are many birds I have not had the luck to photograph yet. I also had the opportunity to teach my 9 year old grandson that we don't need to kill even a millipede here in the park, that this is its home and it is no threat to us.

Publicado em 04 de janeiro de 2013, 04:46 PM por taogirl taogirl | 6 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

08 de janeiro de 2013

Heavy Rains Starting

Today's walk was very brief due to weather. I had left my camera in the car because it was drizzling. However, a few feet into the walk, there was a large flock of small birds under a tree. Couldn't resist trying to see who they were so returned for my camera. As I approached the tree, all the birds flew, but it was not because of me. I saw a dove sized bird in the tree but it didn't look like a dove. I was able to get in fairly close and take pictures while it stared at me. Turned out to be my first sighting of a Sharp-shinned Hawk. It seems to be a Cooper Hawk wanna be with a tiny head and much smaller body than the Cooper's that I have been seeing here. Apparently it was young bird in its second year (thank you Greg Lasley). As soon as it flew off, the other birds gathered at the next tree. Some of them at least were American Goldfinch. Shortly after these pictures were taken they sky let loose and ended the walk. White's Creek will be rising out of its bank tonight and tomorrow in several places undoubtedly.

Publicado em 08 de janeiro de 2013, 11:42 PM por taogirl taogirl | 2 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

11 de janeiro de 2013

Unseasonably Warm Day at Buffalo Ridge Park

I went to Buffalo Ridge Park in Haltom City instead of Arcadia Park today. Buffalo Ridge is just down White's Branch from Arcadia Park but what a difference a very little distance makes. We have a volunteer who lives near Arcadia Park, Jeri Tooley, who for the last 10 years has dedicated herself to protecting and cleaning that park on an almost daily basis. Buffalo Ridge, while it has the same potential as Arcadia Park, is full of trash, plastic bags and drink cups, cans, everywhere. Haltom City seems to only be interested in clearing out all the underbrush under the trees. Crews were working cutting down things everywhere and putting the stuff in piles. No one around this park seems to care what goes into its streams. I have watched it decline yearly. However, even so there were things to be seen. In the midst of all the trash there was a sole Red-eared Slider resting on the muddy bank. Because it was unseasonably warm and sunny, around 70 degrees, there were butterflies: saw Phaon Crescent, Checkered White, and Orange Sulphur. I saw birds that I didn't get to photograph, Titmouse for one. But did get a picture from a distance of a Great Egret and later of a Turkey Vulture down by the creek. While it was a beautiful day and always a pleasure to see nature's creatures, it is very depressing to see what we human beings do to nature.

Publicado em 11 de janeiro de 2013, 11:18 PM por taogirl taogirl | 5 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

13 de janeiro de 2013

A Change in the Weather coming

The warmest part of the day was the earliest. Maybe that is why there were so many birds in the park today, ahead of the north wind. This was the first time this year and actually in a very long time I have seen a Great Blue Heron in the creek. All the birds of various types seemed to be gathering together in the same trees or very close to each other, almost all in the most northern area of the park with trails. There were both Downy and Red-bellied Woodpeckers.

Publicado em 13 de janeiro de 2013, 04:57 AM por taogirl taogirl | 13 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

16 de janeiro de 2013

A Walk to the southern part of Arcadia Trail Park

It was a clear, sunny 50 degree day with light northern breeze. All the dusting of snow from yesterday morning is long gone although it went below freezing last night. We decided to head toward the southern end of the park instead of the northern as we usually do. It was much quieter, few sounds of birds. Those that we did see were almost all nearer to the beginning of the walk and the central part of the park. Many of the common birds were seen, the American Robin, the Carolina Chickadee, the Myrtle Yellow-rumped Warbler, and the Mallard. There were three pairs of Mallards swimming and diving for food just below the first bridge south of Basswood Blvd. The only creature seen further south than that was a domestic cat who appeared to be honing in on some birds we could hear in the distance. Don't know if he was a feral cat or just one allowed to wander free in the park. This end of the park is not as well cared for, much more trash along the trail and stream bed. I am honored though that a local boy scout troop has seen folders of pictures I have been taking of the flora and fauna of this park on Picasa and made a pledge to clean our park twice a year, spring and fall.

Publicado em 16 de janeiro de 2013, 11:35 PM por taogirl taogirl | 5 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

18 de janeiro de 2013

Back to normal

Yesterday was a very strange day. We returned to walking the northern part of the park and it was almost totally devoid of birds and bird sounds. It was eerily quiet. Only the Mallards were hanging about in the creek. There were no raptors, no robins, mockingbirds, white-winged doves, cardinal, none of the regular birds. It was a sunny day in the 50s. Don't know where they all went, but they were back today. Today was warmer, in the low 60s and sunny. There were many robins, cedar waxwings, yellow-rumped warblers, cardinals, mockingbirds, chickadees. Some of the cedar waxwings were putting on some kind of performance which looked potentially like a courting ritual, jumping up in the air off a branch and returning to the same spot. They were doing this in twos. The red-tailed hawk was back in his tree but took flight as I tried to get closer for a picture. Spotted a red-bellied woodpecker in the top of tree on the other side of the creek. Caught a glimpse and unfortunately not a very good picture of a dark eyed junco down in the briars. Haven't seen one of them in almost a month. Felt better to have things back to what has been a more normal state of birds in the park.

Publicado em 18 de janeiro de 2013, 09:37 PM por taogirl taogirl | 6 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

24 de janeiro de 2013

Lake Mineral Wells State Park

Went to Plateau area campground of this wonderful state park for a couple hours today as the temperature has continued to climb daily, reaching a high of about 76 today. The first sighting was of a Nine-banded Armadillo. I followed him around for 5 to 10 minutes taking pictures and watched him go underground into tunnels and come up a few feet away. Armadillos sound like a much bigger animal as they push their way through leaves looking for insects. Groups of American Coots were in two areas of the lake on both sides of Plateau. I saw a pair of Northern Shovelers, my first time ever. They took flight when they saw me on the shore. There is sizeable patch of reeds in a place where water sometimes comes in when the lake is high that was a hiding place for several birds. The only one I caught in photos was the Song Sparrow. While initially it had been very quiet at this campsite, as we sat quietly the birds began to gather in the trees around us, Northern Cardinals and Black Crested Titmice in particular. The Plateau Campground was essentially empty of campers, only a park host was there. Hated to have to leave.

Publicado em 24 de janeiro de 2013, 03:56 AM por taogirl taogirl | 6 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário

27 de janeiro de 2013

Arcadia Trail Park

The previous two days were about 10 degrees cooler than today and totally overcast and damp. There were many more birds in the park in those two days than today when it warmed some to 60 and the sun broke through for an hour or so. On the cloudy days, everywhere I walked there were birds singing/calling. Today it was quiet in many parts of the park. Two days ago there were several woodpeckers at various places in the park, Downy and Red-bellied although possibly a Hairy as well. None here today. There had been flocks of Cedar Waxwings and Robins but far fewer today. The Red-tailed and Cooper's Hawk were both flying today although did not catch the Cooper's in a picture. Yesterday watched the Blue Jays harrass the Red-tailed and get him to fly off. Saw a couple Red-eared sliders on a log today but they quickly slipped into the water and out of sight when they saw me approaching the creek. First sighting of turtles in this creek in weeks. There have been a handful of Orange Sulphurs flying, they have only had dandelions for nectar but in the last couple days the Brown mustard has begun to flower. The House Finches and Myrtle Warblers continue to be numerous as do the female Red-winged Blackbirds. Still no sighting of a male Red-winged Blackbird. The White-winged Doves don't seem nearly as numerous as they were and a few more Mourning Doves are here.

Publicado em 27 de janeiro de 2013, 04:08 AM por taogirl taogirl | 6 observações | 0 comentários | Deixar um comentário