Yesterday morning's foggy forecast prompted me to set an early alarm for a good start to the day:
As I set off with Tessa, within minutes I spotted a Turkey Vulture that had flown to a dead snag, after being disturbed from its morning meal of highway roadkill:
I often don't over- plan my travels but only knew my focus was misty landscapes before the fog burned off, yet birds continued to distract me, including a
slam-on-the-brakes-as-that-was-something-different Black-billed Cuckoo on a wire:
It didn't stay there for long as a second one flew up from the grass below, but I was pleased to discover another location for them close to the cottage. Last year was the first time I finally got excellent views of at least one in different area ten minutes from the cottage, as I did a quick u-turn when unexpectedly spotting this one:
A week later last year, this one was seen further along the same road, which I've already been checking, my fingers are crossed they'll be back:
Continuing on, one of the local Osprey was close to its nest where its mate was resting:
A Northern Waterthrush refused to give me a clear shot of its eye, grrrr:
I finally switched over to landscape mode at some of my favorite marshes in the Kawarthas:
took-my-breath away-when-I-arrived non-critter image from the day:
An inquisitive Red-eyed Vireo ventured out of the woods, I love these sweeties:
My morning chuckle for the day was this road sign that was applicable for any number of roads:
Yet again I found myself drawn to one of my preferred dumps where several distant Turkey Vultures were roosting, but this closer one exchanged great looks with me, not that I was all that comfortable being at the receiving end of its, well, you know...
Continuing north and east, the fog was pretty much gone now
damn distracting birds! :
Stopping for coffee, I was horrified to see that something odd had happened to Tessa!
I had converted my travels over to Moose mode now, having learned of a few remote locations where there had been recent sightings. Although I dipped on that, I was thrilled to see quite a few Snowshoe Hares along the way:
I arrived at my final marsh for the morning and was innocently lured out of the car by singing White-throated Sparrows. When I say "innocently", this was due to the assorted insect population that voraciously greeted me by taking chunks out of me through my bug jacket, enough already!!
Suddenly I heard a soft rustling behind me and slowly turning around, I was shocked to discover a grazing Snowshoe Hare! It was so close to me I had to back up away from it so my lens could focus, but before that happened, it actually stood up on its hind legs to look at me:
Its fur was damp from the morning dew:
Sadly, I never got views of its large hind feet before it disappeared into the long grass, but this view of those deliciously rich brown eyes made up for it:
It was now time to return back to the cottage as inclement weather was on its way, but not before doing a sweep past one of my scrubby roads where I heard and eventually saw this Grasshopper Sparrow:
This is an area similar in feel to Carden, so each year I hope for signs of Loggerhead Shrike, but so far no luck. But it's still a great area where my sightings have also included Eastern Meadowlarks, Bobolinks, Song and Field Sparrows, Wilson's Snipe, Brown Thrashers, Merlin, assorted warblers, Coyotes, and White-tailed Deer, not bad for a stretch of road not more than a kilometre long!