The Pickerelweed Is Blooming At Community Park. The Frogs And Dragonflies Love It

The Pickerelweed Is Blooming At Community Park. The Frogs And Dragonflies Love It

Communiy Park frog (8 of 12)
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Summer  arrived. here in Northeastern Pennsylvania last week.  And  every summer, if you visit the  lakes and ponds in our area,  you would be familiar with the blue flowers that bloom along the shores of the lakes this  time of year. . They are pickerelweed flowers.   Pontederia cordata   Last Friday I took  my usual  afternoon hike in the Community Park near my home in Hazle Township Luzerne County .

I  walked down to the shores of Lake Irena. The glossy, arrow shaped leaves of the pickerelweed plants could be seen protruding from the waters of the lake all along it’s shore. But they still weren’t blooming. It was still a little early, But they would be soon. 

The sun was shining in clear blue skies as I walked around the lake. I saw this eastern towhee  foraging through the underbrush in the woodlands along the trail,

and this turtle sitting on a log in the lake. I didn’t see the Canada geese or mallard ducks that were on the lake earlier in the Spring. 

There were some wildflowers blooming on the trails including the last of the mountain laurel, 

and some yellow St. John’s wort. 

As I usually do, I followed the trail into the surrounding woodlands, here I heard and saw a couple ovenbirds.  These warblers tend to  live in more wooded areas. 

Along the trail in these woodlands some  more wildflowers bloomed, Philadelphia fleabane,

and common daisies. 

Indian hemp also bloomed along the trail attracting fritillary butterflies

, I am not sure if they are meadow or great spangled fritillary butterflies. 

There were also a few of these dragonflies out here in the woodlands. I  have not seen this species near the lake. So much life in out woodlands that I  am not familiar with. I love to keep learning these secrets of nature. 

I returned to the lake and  found a family of tree swallows living in a hole in a dead tree trunk in the lake. 

I could hear the little ones as mom and dad took turns feeding them but I didn’t see them. Hopefully I will soon.

As I was finishing my three mile hike I  was pleased to see the bolete mushroom growing along the trail. I believe it was an inedible bitter bolete but soon the edible species I  gather should start to appear. 

I returned to the park on  Wednesday . It was a average summer day, temperatures were in the 70;s.. Cumulus clouds floated in the blue skies above the lake, .and,

the pickerelweed was blooming.  The blue flowers had appeared all along the shores of the lake. 

These flowers attract many insects, butterflies and dragonflies. 

I saw hundreds of dragonflies, fluttering, darting 

and resting on the leaves of plants growing along the lake. I  tired to learn, but  I am still  unable to identify all of the species of  these beautiful, delicate creatures that flew through  the skies of Northeastern Pennsylvania long  skies before the dinosaurs.

Water lilies  were also now blooming on the lake. 

I took my usual walk around the lake. I didn’t see the tree swallows on Wednesday  but did see a tufted titmouse and

common yellowthroat in the woods along the lake. 

After walking around the lake I  hiked into the surrounding woodlands where  I saw more fritillary butterflies feeding on the flowers and this bee, I am not sure of the species , feeding on the Indian hemp.

Pretty grass pinks still bloomed along the trail. 

I returned to Lake Irena and saw  a lot of bull frog living in the pickerelweed.  Most of them  jumped  into the water as I  approached. This one didn’t. I stopped to watch it  watch me. We stared at each other for about ten minutes when, he got tired and it  looked

like he yawned

It was pretty cool to watch. I didn’t realize how big their mouth is. 

I was very happy to capture these photos. 

I finished  my hike and returned on Thursday. It was another sunny day and I saw a lot of the same  wildflowers and wildlife  I had seen one my hikes earlier in the week. I  did see this red-eyed vireo and

this song sparrow in the surrounding woodlands before finishing my three mike hike. 

On  Friday when I returned it was much warmer and more humid. Summer weather finally came to our area.  I loved it. It was hot walking under the hazy July sunshine, temperatures were in the mid 80’s. 

There were now hoards of dragonflies darting over the pretty blue pickerelweed flowers blooming along the shores of the lake. 

Once again I saw many of the same wildflowers and wildlife as on previous hikes,  I did see this mother chipping sparrow feeding her young one. Here is a link to a gallery on my blog website with more photos of the bull frog and other critters I  saw on  my hikes. Community Park June 2 to July 1 2022. 

Once again Community Park not only provided me with a place t0  walk and get my  exercise  but it gave me the opportunity to observe , once again, the beauty of nature that surrounds us. It is a great asset to our Community. Here is a link to a gallery with some more photos from my hikes. Community Park June 24 to July 1 2022. 

That beautiful season the Summer!
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light;
And the landscape
Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.”
–  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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