A Kingfisher, Great Blue Heron And More Late Summer Beauty At the PPL Wetlands
It was another mild late summer morning on Sunday. I again decided to explore the paths and trails of the PPL Wetlands. I walked the Great Warrior Trail along the banks of the Susquehanna River hoping to a see a bald eagle or beaver as I have on my last few visits.
No luck seeing either this time. It was very quiet under the ancient trees since the song birds have headed south with the the shortening day and cooler weather. There were very few birds fluttering in the trees. I did see this flicker which, I believe will stay here for the Winter.
Like the song birds the robins and a lot of the waterfowl have also left but I still heard, and saw, a few catbirds,
and lingering red-winged blackbirds.
I walked along the trail between the canals and ponds and found more signs of Fall including the red leaves of the Virginia creepers vines,
and the ferns which have now turned brown.
There were some mushrooms on the forest floor, including these inky caps.
I was disappointed I didn’t see any bald eagles along the river, or a beaver swimming in the water but, as always, the wetlands did provide me with another surprise.
As I walked to the to the riverlands, I saw this female kingfisher sitting on a wire and eating, or, trying to eat, a crayfish.
The kingfisher was on the other side of a canal so I couldn’t get close enough to watch her struggles with the crayfish but I did take these photographs with my zoom lens showing her efforts to eat what she caught. Here is a link to some more photographs. Kingfisher photographs.
I also saw another interesting sight. At first the great blue heron I spotted was stalking food in Lake Took-A-While. Nothing unusual about that.
But it spread it’s wings opened it’s mouth and seemed to just enjoy the late summer sunshine like it was relaxing at the beach.
I wished I had more time to watch the blue heron, and the kingfishers, which were still flying above the lake but it was Sunday and September and the Philadelphia Eagles were playing at one o’clock so I had to walk back to my car, catching some more of nature’ s beauty on the way, including this late season butterfly,
and weeds, well we call them weeds, the common ragweed that is such a nuisance to allergy sufferers this time of year, but still having a beauty to them. And food for many wasp, bees and other insects.
I also once again observed these insects still attracted to this milkweed pod.
The PPL Wetlands provided me with another large dose of nature’s beauty both large and small. Here is a link to some more photographs from my hike on Sunday. PPL Wetlands photographs.
“The river is such a tranquil place, a place to sit and think of romance and the beauty of nature, to enjoy the elegance of swans and the chance of a glimpse of a kingfisher.”
― Jane Wilson-Howarth