Christmas Eve At The PPL Wetlands. A December Thaw.
Christmas Eve is not a day for last minute shopping for me. I dislike shopping most days and wasn’t going near a store on Christmas Eve. Instead, I decided, of course, to spend my day outdoors. After a cold snap two weeks ago, we had some rain and warmer weather here in Northeastern Pennsylvania. I decided to see how it affected the PPL Wetlands.
I also encountered this beautiful bird. One that reminds me of my dad, a mockingbird. . It landed on a branch near me and seemed to be watching me. I love their singing and have never seen one in the Winter before.
I continued on my hike and found some ponds still covered in a thin layer of ice. There were no water fowl in the wetlands on my Christmas Eve hike, not even the usual Canada geese. And with colder weather on the way they may be gone until Spring.
All of the birds, and the few squirrels and chipmunks I saw were very cautious and secretive. Probably because of the lack of leaf cover, the smaller number of other wildlife in the cold and the red tailed hawks soaring overhead looking for a Christmas Eve snack. Here is a link to some more photographs of the birds I saw at the wetlands. PPL Wetlands birds 12/24/2017
I walked down to the Susquehanna River and found that it was ice free. Last week there was already ice sheets forming on the waters of the river.
Not on Christmas Eve.No ice on the river on Sunday. It was a pleasant and mild December with temperatures in the mid 30’s. Mild weather was not going to last long. The forecast for a white Christmas came true. We had a two inch snowfall later that evening. And temperatures plummeted on Christmas Day. It is four degrees as I finish this post Friday morning. And colder weather on the way.
I am not sure if I will find any wildlife at the PPL Wetlands this weekend, but I am sure of one thing, there will be a lot more ice on the river, ponds and canals. Here is a link to some more photographs from my hike on Christmas Eve. PPL Wetlands 11/24/2017.