Pond – Late Spring, Early Summer

Catching up, since last fall.  The Minnows made it through the winter.  They patrol the pond, and are busy breeding under the water lilies – you see ripples coming from the edges of the lily pads.  Haven’t seen a blue gill yet – hmmmm.  Of course, there are frogs, toads, etc.  And flying birds.  And snakes.  And turtles.  And fishing birds – Herons.  The odd duck or two – they never stay.  And beauty.  So much so – I had to take some pics, and put em here.

Charlie says good bye …

Dandelion

Miles – So very old, enjoying the dandelions down by the pond last May.  He slowly walks down the hill these days, and then rests his bones for a while – waiting to see where I’ll go next.

Wallowing in the willows

Wallowing in the willows

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A beautiful spring day – fresh snowfall, geese on the pond

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Our two new residents today.  As seen in mag view.  (tap 4 fullsize)

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The actual view from our deck.

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And cats.  Yup.  Cats too.  That’s Boris in the foreground, and graycat (a new feral resident here at SRW) at the other end of the deck.  A daily drama.

Yesterday, everything was green, growing like mad.  So different today.  Very exciting.

Muskrats in the Spring

Spring is so brassy …

Spring is Big

Spring is Big

And sometimes, it brings muskrats …

Muskrat signs on the pond bottom – first of the season.  The fresh tan dirt on the normally dark bottom, indicates a muskrat has been holing out my bank nearby.

Tan dirt on pond bottom

Tan dirt on pond bottom

Tan dirt from ratty holing out my pond bank

Tan dirt from ratty holing out my pond bank

I found the hole – after 10 minutes or so of searching – had to bend up a pole to find it. It was narrower than others I’ve found.

Muskrat Hole Finding Tool

Muskrat Hole Finding Tool

So I grabbed a rusting #110 trap, set it, and placed it over the hole.  A stick helps keep it upright.  And a stake through the ring chained to the trap keeps everything from being carted away by other animals, or an animal wounded in the trap.  I think it’s usually fatal though.

A #110 Muskrat Trap set

A #110 Muskrat Trap set

Closer look

Taking a step back …

Some older nearby holes ...

Some older nearby holes …

I hope it hasn’t already eaten the water lily bulbs I put in earlier this spring.

It’s the Mallards – again

They showed up a few days ago.  On the heels of the receding pond ice.  Wonder if they’re the same pair that visited last spring?  Or the spring before that?  After a week or so, she disappears.  Then sometime later, don’t remember how long, the drake follows.  The pics below, taken today, show the drake in the pond, with the female (dame?) standing on the end of the dock.  In one pic, there’s even a shot of a drake on the back deck.  Click a pic to slide through em.

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Spring Snow and Mud

Spring … the promise of summer, encased in mud and snow.  Some pics of the pond (and mud, and snow, and ice).  The animal tracks made on the snow that had covered the ice that covered the pond for the last two months … well, during the last couple warm days, that snow merged into the melting ice, and then refroze last night and today, into a rather intriguing pattern made all out of pond ice.

Close up of the raised frozen animal tracks.

Close up of the raised frozen animal tracks.

And a gallery of pics, showing all – click and see …