Another Hike In The Susquehanna Wetlands With Some Old And New Critters

Another Hike In The Susquehanna Wetlands With Some Old And New Critters

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On Easter Morning I decided to take another five mile  hike in the Susquehanna Wetlands in Salem Township, Luzerne County. I love trying to capture some of the many critters I know that live here. It was mostly sunny and a seasonably cool 43 degrees when I arrived at the wetlands. Once again I scared a number of wood ducks as I began my hike and walked along the ponds and canals.

There were a few woodpeckers in the trees along the trail. I believe, because of the large size of the bill, that this is a hairy woodpecker and not a downy woodpecker.  I have a hard time distinguishing the two similar species. 

There was also a red-bellied woodpecker searching for insects on the  old branches  high in the tree tops. 

I  walked down to the Susquehanna River again, hoping to see an eagle, an osprey or the kingfishers that I have been seeing there.

None of these birds were there on Sunday but I did see these two common mergansers swimming on the river. 

Walking back to the wetlands I saw, and heard, the song sparrow,  enjoying the April sun and singing loudly to all the other sparrows in the wetlands

The warm sun also brought out some of them many painted turtles that live in the canals and ponds of the wetlands. You may see hundreds of them on a warm sunny Spring day.  

I left the wetlands and walked in the river lands section of the nature preserve  and  walked along the shores of Lake Took-A-While.

Here I observed this red squirrel looking at me from a tree branch as I walked by.

It ran up the tree and sat watching me watch it for a few minutes, until I got bored and continued my walk.

Near the squirrel I  saw another species of woodpecker,  a northern flicker. in a tree top. 

These birds are often seen on the ground searching for one of their favorite foods,  ants.  My dad would often watch them in his yard.  This one flew off as I approached. 

As usual I continued my hike along the lake.

There were no ducks, geese or double-breasted cormorants on the lake on Sunday but a few of the  cormorants were flying overhead. 

And soon after I saw the cormorants I was delighted to see this juvenile bald eagle soar overhead.  Seeing this magnificent birds is always the highlight of a hike in the wetlands.

After seeing the eagles I started my 2 1/2 mile hike back to my car in the wetlands. 

Along the way I saw another eastern phoebe flycatcher. 

And, as the sun warmed up the air temperature a lot more turtles appeared in the wetlands. 

The warm rays of the sun also encouraged this American   bullfrog to leave the waters and enjoy the warming April air

My last stop before leaving the wetlands was the bald eagles nest. 

Once again there was a parent eagle in the nest watching over either some eggs or young eaglets. 

I am sure that the juvenile bald eagle soaring over the river lands earlier on my hike was hatched in this nest last year. And I hope it is joined by a few  younger siblings later this summer. It is always a great experience to see our National bird flying through our skies again. Here is a link to some more photographs from my hike in the Susquehanna Wetlands on Sunday. Susquehanna Wetlands Hike April 4 2021. 

April hath put a spirit of youth in everything. William Shakespeare


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