Wednesday, October 22, 2008

First Hard Frost

The temperature dipped into the 20s yesterday morning and left swaths of frost across the Bald Spot at Carleton College. The cold triggered leaf-drop for many trees that had been holding onto their brilliant foliage for what seemed like longer than usual this fall; golden leaves were falling like rain all around town.

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Impressionist Scene

The ruffled reflection of fall leaves provided a colorful backdrop for geese and a pair of mallards on the Cannon River yesterday morning.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008

A Little Front-Window Birdwatching

Two birdfeeders hang by my front door and are visible through a porthole-shaped window. Chickadees have been frequent visitors, and this weekend we noticed a house finch or two and a whole gang of dark-eyed juncos, the first we've noticed this season. I didn't get any good photos of the juncos this time around but will be on the lookout in the days ahead and will hope for better luck.

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Mallards and Geese Party in the Sun

At the end of the week we had some lovely sunny weather, and it seemed every mallard and Canada goose in the area had chosen the stretch of river between Fourth and Fifth Streets to hold a convention. The photo above shows less than half of the birds on this stretch of the river. There was so much quacking going on (not to mention displaying, like the goose just to the right of the tree trunk near the top of the photo) that I couldn't resist taking a little video to capture it.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Bald Eagle Over the Cannon

This morning I was just getting ready to take some photos of the river and the bridge, since the light was so lovely, when I saw something huge land in the tree at the left (west) end of the bridge. A few moments later, a bald eagle took off again and flapped away downriver. You can see it toward the right side of this photo. (Click on the photo for better detail.)
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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Great Blue Heron Downtown

A Great Blue Heron was hunkering down on the west side of the Cannon River by Ames Park this morning. Sorry the resolution on this zoomed-then-cropped photo isn't great (click on the photo for a larger view), but it's exhilarating to see such a magnificent bird in the middle of town life. When I look at herons' formidable bills, I always imagine being a fish whose last thoughts are, "Oops, I think that's a her---!"

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