Yep, I went back to Squaw Creek today. Because of the mild weather, I suspected that there would be little ice and I wanted to see what might still be hanging around. Well, I was pleasantly surprised to see quite a number of swans.
We are not cygnets. We are all grown up!
They are very beautiful in the bright sunlight. They weren’t too far from shore so getting a few good images wasn’t too difficult. Those pictured above are juvenile. Their parents were right next to them.
Just waking up and needing to stretch
Look who’s walking on water!
Look everyone! I can walk on water!
Beside the swans, there are still a lot of snow geese and mallards hanging around. The mallards are very nervous. I’m sure they’ve been shot at a number of times by now. They’d fly away when the car got within 50 to 100 yards of them. I couldn’t get close enough for a decent image.
I always feel luck when I see bald eagles. I saw 4 mature and 6 immature eagles on my first trip around the lake. The one above just stayed perched begging to be photographed.
Great example of a very BAD background… I know better than posting an image like this! My photography friends will be disappointed in me! Neither it nor I could move to get a better background. I had to post it though because I love its attitude!
I then spied this very old house. I’ve been by it a number of times but had never seen it before today. I wonder why?
Who lives here?
Talk about planting trees too close! Is this what’s meant by the saying, “Some people bring the house to the trees”? (Dodge truck commercial)
All in all, it was a pretty good day. I hope you enjoyed the swans and perhaps my rambling.
See Ya! Come back soon.
As just about everyone in the area knows, we are lucky to have snow owls in Kansas and Missouri this year. The one pictured below was on lake side of the dam at Smithville Lake. I watched and photographed him for about two hours until a jogger got too close and he flew away. I was very luck to see two of them that day.
I sent pictures of this one to ornithologist, Mark B. Robbins of the University of Kansas Biodiversity Institute. He believes this one to be a juvenile male. In the picture above, he looks as though he’s angry that I’m close by. He’s actually preening himself which means that he’s not upset by my presence at all. I stayed quite a distance away so as not to cause him any stress. In my view, no photograph is worth taking if it causes an animal stress. I’d rather just watch and enjoy it from afar.
Snowys prey on lemmings which is a small rodent. They eat other small animals as well. Every three to five years, the lemming population crashes which causes some snowy owls to migrate south. It must really be bad this year because no one can remember seeing the numbers of snowys that we’re seeing in our area. Biologists and naturalists have said that many of them will not make it back up to the Arctic in the spring. They’ll just be too stressed or weak. Several have already been struck by cars. Cars, people and trees must be very strange to them. There are none or are very rare where they live.
It’s been a real treat to see them. I only hope that this one and many of the others in the area find enough food through out the winter to become strong enough to make it back home! Good Luck Little Buddy!