Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Ipswich River Sanctuary

It's been several years since our last visit to the Ipswich River Sanctuary.  I was excited to feed the birds.  We usually make the trek in the fall or winter.  Monday was our first summer visit.  What a difference!  The ponds were lush and green with lilies and dragonflies.  The Rockery was so quiet and still, it seemed as if no one else was at the sanctuary. 

The birds were pretty quiet, too.  We walked around the pond and listened to the croaking frogs, but any peeping trees seemed far away.  We came across a couple of shy titmice who watched me, but wouldn't risk taking seed from my hand.  A lone chickadee took the seed I offered.  This was not the flock of curious birds I've met in the past! 

There was plenty of other wildlife.  We see deer every time we've been there.  There were toads and frogs, and one little snake that wriggled across out path.  The pond must have beavers, because there was a lodge that half-covered the boardwalk.

Before we left, we headed to the tower by another pond.  I wanted to see what that pond looked like in the summer, as well (we saw a blue heron glide over the water).  I'm so glad we walked over!  Several chickadees came by to check me out.  They were a scruffy bunch.  It must be molting season for the chickadees, titmice and nuthatches.

I stood on the path, the lowest branches of the trees were 10-15 feet above me.  The chickadees dropped out of the trees like stones and then lightly landed on my hand.  They weigh next to nothing!

One buzzed by me, then executed an instant u-turn when he saw I was both harmless and had food.  It was so entertaining to watch their acrobatics.  A nuthatch stumbled across the scene and snatched a few seeds.  An enterprising chickadee tried to stuff two sunflower seeds in his beak before flying off to shell them.  I loved listening to them talk and interact with each other as they came and went from my hand.  Oh!  So worth the trip!

Photos are from a winter visit (it was certainly too warm for jackets on Monday).  We both forgot our cameras!  At least I remembered to bring the sunflower seed.  Next time we go, I'll be sure to have a camera.

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