Sunday, May 19, 2019

Lady Slipper Time

Lady Slipper
It was 62 degrees at 8:30 a.m. Comfortable and clear.

People used to tell me that lady slippers bloomed around Memorial day, and that may have been true, but with climate change it has been  moving up, so I was hoping to see some today and to my great excitement, there they were!

I found three in full bloom and one with a flower, but it hadn't turned pink yet. Also saw two plants with foliage only - so a total of 6! Not bad...

The lower gardens had our nesting tree swallows and a house wren, so all houses are spoken for.

Plenty of robins, yellow warblers, goldfinches, catbirds, song sparrows, orioles and a crow being chased by angry birds.

Male Oriole above nest
The orioles have built a nest in the same tree, same spot as they have the last few years. It's quite amazing. Guess they really like it there.

Mr. Oriole gave away the location as he quietly kept an eye on the nest. They arrive and in the blink of an eye, breeding is in full swing!

Ran into Alison and she and a friend had seen a bay-breasted warbler in the upper gardens. Sadly, I wasn't able to see it by the time I got up there. A common merganser flew overhead.

Tree swallow
The upper gardens had much the same with the addition of house finches, chickadees, cardinals and ughhh house sparrows.

I took the path at the back of the upper gardens down to the river for a change. Heard warbling vireos and common yellowthroats. Saw a Canada goose couple with their 2 young goslings strolling down the river.

I started up the path by the Nature Center to get to woodcock meadow when a pair of Carolina wrens caught my eye.

I hear them, but rarely see them, so I was surprised. They were both on top of a storage container next to the building which I thought odd. The next thing I knew, one took off into a broken light fixture attached to the building.

Carolina Wren in broken light fixture
They say that Carolina wrens will nest in the strangest places including old boots etc. and I believe that is what was happening. They seemed very excited and intrigued with the idea that this could be a great nesting spot!

Walked along the JCC path to the parking lot where I saw the Lady Slippers and also heard the sound of Peewees calling. They're back!