October Ends With Blue Skies, Sunshine And Fallen Leaves At The Susquehanna Wetlands

October Ends With Blue Skies, Sunshine And Fallen Leaves At The Susquehanna Wetlands

Susquehanna wtlands (1 of 32)
Previous Post
Next Post

We had  our first heavy  frost here in Northeastern Pennsylvania on Saturday, the last Saturday  of October.   Although it was cold , the  clear blue skies and sunshine made for a perfect day for hiking outdoors.  So,  as I often do, I decided to hike at the Susquehanna Wetlands  in Luzerne County. The temperature was  in the 20’s when I arrived at the wetlands.  As usual I first walked to the banks of the Susquehanna River. The cold temperature  and bright sunshine caused a mist to rise  over the river. 

I left the river and walked into the wetlands. Most of the trees had lost their  leaves. It was sad to see the bare branches again.  

The trails were now covered with their fallen leaves.   different shapes and colors on the fallen leaves. The roundleaf greenbrier  vines and

sugar maple trees produced leaves with different shades of gold and yellow. 

The red oak trees produced  leaves,

with many shades of red. 

The beech trees  produced bright golden yellow leaves, many will remain on the beech trees throughout the Winter. And of course there were now many shades of brown leaves littering the ground along the trail. 

There were not many birds active at the start of my walk but when I approached  the Water Fowl Pond I found a lot of bird activity which continued on my five mile hike. 

Here I  observed small flocks of white-throated sparrows,

song sparrows, 

and a few swamp sparrows. 

I would see a few field sparrows near the river lands later in my hike. . Most of  these birds will remain in our area for the Winter. 

There were a few winter wrens, 

and Carolina wrens singing and chattering in the trees along the trails in the wetlands and river lands. I love the songs of the Carolina wren, They are especially beautiful in the Spring. 

High in the treetops I heard the soft chattering of a flock of cedar waxwings.

These elegant birds feed entirely on fruit. 

I also saw this American goldfinch feeding near the pond. 

I left the pond and walked through the wetlands toward the river lands. For the first time since late March I did not hear the whistling sounds of the wood ducks as they eluded me on my walks. They must have migrated south since my last visit two weeks ago.  I did see a pair of mallard ducks fly overhead. 

As I continued my walk I was able to see, and photograph a northern flicker,

and my favorite woodpecker, the large and  beautiful pileated woodpecker. 

I love seeing these birds

on my hikes in our woodlands. 

I walked down to the river again, hoping to see a bald eagles, a belted king fisher or some other water fowl  but there was no critters there on this cool October morning, 

There were few wildflowers growing in the  cool, short days of late  October. There were only a  few scattered New England asters and

blue wood aster growing along the trails on my five mile hike. 

I walked into the river lands and along Lake Took-A-While. The deep blue sky reflected in the waters  of the lake. It was a beautiful scene. 

As I walked along the lake I noticed large hovers  of trout swimming near the shores of the lake. There were dozens of them. I hope a eagle or osprey would have noticed them too so I keep looking up in the skies. However, none showed up for an easy fish meal. 

When I reached the far end of the lake I began my walk back to the wetlands. It had warmed up and was a perfect Fall day. 

I saw a few more wrens ,sparrows and tufted titmice on my hike back to the wetlands.  Here is a link to a gallery with more photos of the birds I saw on my hike. Susquehanna Wetlands birds October 29 2022. 

As I walked through the thick carpet of fallen leaves

I saw two more critters on my return hike, this chipmunk

and this turtle soaking in the October sun. It may be the last turtle I see until next April. I hope not. I hope we get a few more weeks of warm weather before the cold and snows arrive. I will continue my hikes here in the wetlands in the Winters but I will not enjoy them  anywhere near as much as I do in the Spring and Summer. Here is a link to some more photos from my October hike in the wetlands.  Susquehanna Wetlands  October 29 2022. 


“There is something in October sets the gypsy blood astir: We must rise and follow her, When from every hill of flame She calls, and calls each vagabond by name.”
― William Bliss

This is my first post