Saturday, December 15, 2018

deer in the winter woods for Saturdy Critters

I'm not seeing many deer lately, but last week I saw these two standing on the edge of a woods patch.
I am linking today to

Thursday, December 06, 2018

Female cardinal

we have a pair of Cardinals hanging around in Bird Alley , however they are both very elusive. we see the female more often than the male, but if she sees us looking out the windows at her she is gone like a fash. Last week we were very surprised to see two female Cardinals feeding here.

Saturday, December 01, 2018

Pine Siskin for Saturday Critters

By just  finding a little touch of yellow on those tiny finch cousins and I know, “Yes, It is a Pine Siskin.With the news that an expected influx of winter finches are expected in my area I am constantly on the lookout for some of the dear little one of this bird family. I am very hopeful that as winter truly sets in , I might have a few little redpoll visitors as I haven’tseen  any of them for  the last few years or so.
I am posting today on Eileen’s Saturday Critters, which can be found at
Have a wonderful first day of December everyone.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Sparrows for Saturday Critters

We have had three species of sparrows feeding recently in Bird Alley. The white-throated Sparrow is a daily visitor and is often the first arrival of the day.

the second most frequent sparrow visitor

is the little northern Tree sparrow. There are two strong identifying features of the Tree Sparrow. First, look for the bicoloured bill which has a lower yellow bill, and secondly the tree sparrow has a central dark breast spot.

the third sparrow that I found in Bird Alley about a week nd a half ago was a Song Sparrow, but with this recent cold snap it hasn't been seen since.Hopefully this lingering sparrow is now  headed for more southerly climes. As the Tree Sparrow, the Song Sparrow also has a center dark breast spot to identify it.
I am linking today to Eileen's Saturday Critters which can be found at
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend to all American viewers and safe travels!

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Winter Finches( Grosbeaks) for Saturday Critters

I was very pleased to read this week that there is an expected influx of winter finches in my area and so on the day of my reading that information  I went out looking for Grosbeaks and red berries.  I went to my favourite pond area where I usually find ducks, but knew there were red berries there also and I found a Pine Grosbeak feeding on berries!  What a wonderful surprise and find!!

The next day I was hoping to see an Evening Grosbeak show up and they did!, a small flock with both male nd females within the group.
A male E. Grosbeak in Bird Alley

shown above  ,   male Evening Grosbeaks

above , a female Evening Grosbeak

Other  species of large iterant berry feeding birds, Bohemian Waxwings, (although not winter finches) stopped by to feed on our ornamental crab-apples

I had a wonderful week viewing feeding birds 
I am linking today to Eileen's Saturday Critters which can be found at:

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Piebald Deer

Earlier one day this week while driving over Ghost Hill I saw a regular sized adult brown deer and a much smaller piebald one cross the highway in front of my car. 

in front of my car on the highway!  after they passed by me I stopped my car, turned and went back to see if I could get a picture of the piebald, I did and shown above there is the small deer at the edge of the woods looking at me.  A beauty!
Also a back view shows there is much white on its legs too.

I have looked at the same location again for several times this week but I haven't seen it again

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Feeding Robins

Our first snow earlier last week was the prompt that signaled the Robins in our area that the berries ( Mountain Ash and Ornamenta

l Flowering Crab) and rosehips in our yard were ready for their annual feasting. We enjoyed watching these red breasted beauties forage among our trees and bushes for several days last week, including even yesterday. It is an annual delight at this time of year to us to be able to watch their "to and fro" feasting activities. I remember when living in Hawkshaw at this time of year we always hosted a large flock of Evening Grosbeaks that arrived each fall to feed on our Mountain Ash berries, as well as our ornamental Flowering Crab Apple Trees.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Spotted Sandpiper for Camera Critters

Hmmm, the post title might seem misleading  and you are looking for a sandpiper with spots!

but, not so in this case as this is an adult non-breeding  spotted sandpiper.  You are more likely to see the spotted version in the spring during their breeding season.  When their breeding is over with the spots disappear and the spotted sandpiper's appearance looks very much like this bird in the picture.  This is the fall version in our region.
I am linking today to Eileen's Saturday Critters meme which can be found
A very happy first day of Fall to everybody.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

I have been waiting for a Sapsucker to arrive all summer , but one didn't arrive until yesterday!  The red on its throat was not very full and I wonder if it might have been a juvenile?

Saturday, September 15, 2018

A Stray Cat for Saturday Critters

I have named this handsome stray cat that visits in Bird Alley, “Butterfly”, and I’m sure you can understand my naming choice when you look at the pattern on its side. 

Butterfly is fascinated with the action in bird Alley!  His head swivels back and forth as the birds fly from feeder to feeder.  We have never seen any evidence that Butterfly catches or harms any birds. and as he loves watching the birds and  we love watching this handsome cat as he visits often. 
I am linking today to Eileen's Saturday Critters which can be found at viewingnaturewitheileen
Have a wonderful weekend everyone.

Saturday, September 08, 2018

Anoither great Blue Heron for Saturday Critters.

Earlier this summer I suffered a dearth of Great Blue Heron sighting and lately I seem to be seeing them often!  They are such a

beautiful bird to my mind that I am enjoying finding them often!
Yesterday morning I saw this heron standing in a hunched position on a small island of land in a pond.  It was a foggy morning and I assume that the Heron was waiting and hoping that its breakfast would soon pass by.
I am linking today toViewing Nature with Eileen which can be found at

Saturday, September 01, 2018

A duck and a great blue heron for Saturday Critters

At this time of year I go out hoping to find ducks.  I found two yesterday and so intent was I on getting their pictures that I failed to see the Great blue Heron standing behind it!  Only as the duck

was swimming across the water reflection of the Great Blue Heron did I see it standing there! I was sitting in my car on the road with my window down and I was only focused on getting the duck picture.  Go figure! I was so very pleased to see the heron as I have seen so few this summer.  I had seen two ducks swimming by a small island there in the pond but I had not seen the large Great Blue Heron standing on the island shore there.
I shall go to see if I can find it again today!
I am linking this mourning with Eileen's Saturday Critters which can be found at
Have a wonderful day everyone on this first day of September. How I appreciate being a retired teacher on days such as this.  Net week /I shall smile and wave asI see the schoolbuses passing by!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Great Blue Heron

Great B

lue Heron seem to be scarce this summer.  This is the only picture of a Great Blue Heron that I have been able to get a picture of this summer.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

A Young Male Ruby throated Hummingbird for Saturday Critters

Earlier this week I was watching several hummingbirds feeding at our feeders.  I knew a few of the birds must be newly hatched this year as thier numbers had increased.  I decided ro take some pictures and I noticed a few of the humminbirds had small flecks of red

 at their throats.  I wondered if these birds might be young males?
I decided to see what information I could find online about the full red throat of a male Ruby throated Hummingbirdhummingbird.  I found an informative site at:
I discovered that an young male hummingbird does not get a full throat or gorget of red until their first winter.  However near their first summer's end  a young male may start to show  one to several red feathers at its throat.  Ah ha!!  So that is what I had seen with the small flecks of red at their throats They were young male hummingbirds..  I love making small discoveries like this and I decided to share this information today on Eleen's Saturday Critters which can be found at viewingnaturewitheileen.blogspot,ca
A Happy weekend and happy natureviewing to everyone folks!

Monday, August 06, 2018


Just a visual recap of our new Monarch that emerged from its chrysalis yesterday. We had found he caterpillar on July 24th, and we brought it home and put it in a small plastic cage. On July 27th the caterpillar entered into its chrysalis stage. , On August 5th the adult Monarch left the chrysalis and lay with open wings at the bottom of the cage, as its wings dried and stiffened we set the butterfly free by placing it on a leaf of a milkweed plant, after being there for a few moments it flew away

Sunday, August 05, 2018

Update on caterpillar metamorphosis

It has been nine days now since the Monarch Butterfly Caterpillar has been in its chrysalis. This morning I was able to see a bit of colour of the adult Monarch butterfly. within its chrysalis. It will just be a couple of days now until the fully develop butterfly emerges! It is an Amazing! process to observe! It was difficult to get a good picture as I had to insert the camera in through the top of the cage, but you can see the colourful development  of the adult Monarch along the sides of the chrysalis!

Friday, August 03, 2018

Red foxes for Saturday Critters

I often find foxes at the lagoon area of my community.  One morning this week I had found two!

The goldenrod in the background dates this picture to be early in August as there is an abundance of goldenrod in the fields and meadows round about.
I was in my car while taking these pictures and consider myself really lucky to get the picture below of one of the foxes with its mouth open with its tongue curled up to the right side of its mouth.
I am linking today to Eileen's Saturday Critters which can be found at 
Have a wonderful weekend everybody. 
 Hopefully the temperatures are cool wherever you are.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Another Monarch Butterfly on the way!

On Monday, July 30th I found another Monarch Butterfly caterpillar.  It was much bigger than the previous one that I had had, which is now in its chrysalis stage.  This new caterpillar was quite thick ( fat) and long! In the picture below of this caterpillar in the cage it reminds me of a little tiger!

Because of its size we assumed that it wouldn't stay long in its caterpillar stage.we were right as the next day, July 31st. we watched while it climber to the top of the cage
Once at the top it attached itself to the cage top and was soon hanging downward in an "J" shape.

When I got up this morning it was still hanging in its J shape, however I was in for a surprise for while I drank my first cup of coffee it had changed into its next stage, that of a shiny green chrysalis.

So I can expect to see an adult Monarch butterfly to emerge from the chrysalis in ten days time@  How MAGICAL and AMAZING  it all is!

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

A Wild Turkey Poult

In the fall of 2017 a group of five Wild Turkeys were seen around my community, And then they were seen again in the spring, so apparently they overwintered well here. But I am several other interested birders wondered did they mate and have young turkeys or poults?"

 YES! I saw an adult Wild Turkey and one poult this morning along Riverside Drive!

Monday, July 30, 2018

A Red Fox visiting our yard!

I had just arrived back home from my morning drive looking for birds or wildlife to photograph when upon getting out of my car I spied this RedFox in our back yard. As it saw me it ran across the highway and disappeared. I had shouted to my husband,David to come and when he came I explained that I had just seen a Fox!. And suddenly David said, "Here it comes again!" and I turned and saw the fox at the beginning of our 
driveway, but when it saw us it ran away again across the highway

. Thankfully Shakey , our cat ,was inside our house asleep on our bed. Shakey has been outdoors a lot recently during the daytime, But. "NO MORE SHAKEY! Outdoors is off limits to you for the time being!" Foxes are smart and we suspect it knows that there is a cat around here!!
We knew a fox was around as David had seen one in the adjacent meadow a few weeks ago, but we hadn't seen it since, until this morning! We had relaxed a bit and had started letting Shakey out a bit in the past few days! "But no more Shakey! Consider yourself grounded for the next few weeks!!!"
"Probably for the rest of the summer!"

Friday, July 27, 2018

A most amazing caterpillar! For Saturday Critters

On July the 24th, 2018 my husband found this monarch butterfly caterpillar on the leaf of a milkweed plant at Three Tree Creek. We had a small plastic cage with us

for just the possibility that we might be lucky enough to come across one sometime. When we got the caterpillar home we put it in a larger cage along with some free milkweed leaves.
The cage seemed quite roomy and adequate for such a little creature and we had used this cage before in 2014 and we had watched the
process of metamorphosis occur, so we were satisfied with its accommodation!
The next day, July 25th, we again added fresh milkweed leaves to the cage and as it turns out it was lucky that we did!  This little caterpillar had a voracious appetite! By late afternoon I noticed that it had eaten an entire leaf!
so I added another fresh leaf and it had eaten about half of the leaf (you can see the half eaten leaf under the caterpillar!) Interesting that I hadn't observed such a huge appetite previous years when we had also kept a caterpillar.
The next morning (July 26th) I was away until noon and when I returned home I noticed that the caterpillar appeared to be unusually active! It was rather quickly moving around the inside perimeter of the cage. From my previous experience I knew that the time would come when the caterpillar would climb to the top of the cage and ready itself for the next stage by spinning some silk to attach itself to the top of the cage. I anticipated that perhaps it was about time for this to happen, so I placed a small stick inside the cage to allow the caterpillar to climb to the top via the stick and when I checked the caterpillar again, it was laying flat against the top of the cage. Aha! I kept checking for any change before we went to bed for the night.
July 27, I checked early this morning and it was as I had assumed it would be, the caterpillar had attached itself to the top of the cage and it was hanging downward in a "J" shape.  It had now entered the pupa stage!
It was difficult to get a good photo in such a small area, but look carefully and you can see the "J" shaped caterpillar.
Things have been moving very quickly today and at about 3:30 p.m. I looked again and the caterpillar had shed its skin and was now covered with a green shiny, silken looking covering, its chrysalis.

In about 10 days time an adult Monarch butterfly will emerge and then we will return it to a milkweed patch and set it free, wishing it well on its journey to Mexico this fall and winter! 
What an amazing caterpillar this is... so programmed and filled with such intuition and knowledge that it is able to turn itself into a most beautiful and amazing adult Monarch butterfly.

 I am linking today to Eileen's Saturday Critters which can be found at

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Canada geesefamily for Saturday Critters

I was very disappointed this spring, summer as I had not seen any baby geese or ducks.  I was especially anticipating seeing those sweet, little, yellow fluffy Canada Geese babies... but I didn't see any. However today I was fortunate to chance upon a Canada Goose Family as the last two members were crossing the road as my car approached and by then they had all slipped into the water again. This year's young are quite grown by now... into what I call their teenage stage.

 I assume that there was a family of three young with Mamma and Papa along sheparding the young ones across the road and back into the water again.
I am linking today to Eilen's blog , Saturdays Critters which can be found at:

Sunday, July 08, 2018

young raccoon

Sometimes when I see something unusual and fascinating I must learn to take a picture first, no matter how far or distant it is, no matter of it turning out to be not such  a great picture.  Yesterday when I saw what appeared to be a ball of fur lying in the middle of the highway, I was curious!. That is when I should have tried for a picture!  I slowly eased  my car up until I was beside it.  The noise of my window going down was a turning point and a small, curious head appeared from the middle of the ball of fur!! What a delightful surprise that was!

.  The animal quickly stood and made its way across the highway to the roadside grasses.  It was alone and as it walked I could detect a hesitation in its walk as if there was an injury to its legs.  It stopped and looked back at me in my car.
It was a young raccoon as the black mask and striped tail were unmistakable features
As it reached the roadside grasses it appeared to be more comfortable in its surroundings. This young raccoon had obviously lost its mother somehow.  I did not detect any evidence of an adult raccoon having perished on the highway.  Whatever had happened to it, it seems as if the young kit was waiting for it on the highway.  The life of nature's young is very precarious, be it danger of being hit while crossing s highway or the loss of its main food source,: its mother. I was glad that I had frightened it off the highway as the traffic there on a Saturday morning was fairly frequent and what a dangerous location the young raccoon had chosen to have a nap!
"Fair well little raccoon ", Maybe I shall frequent that area for the next few days to oust you from sleeping on the middle of the highway if I encounter such an action again.  Be safe and lets hope you and your momma are reunited again soon..