The Splendor Of Spring At The PPL Wetlands

The Splendor Of Spring At The PPL Wetlands

PPL Wetlands -5
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It was another  cool and foggy start  today here in Northeastern Pennsylvania.  But,  it’s Spring,  and I wasn’t staying indoors,  so I decided to see what was new at the PPL Wetlands in Salem Township.  What I found was a fresh, light green  that is so special and only found in May in these parts. . PPL Wetlands -1

The grasses, plants, trees, bushes , weeds and flowers were all bursting forth with a lush new growth.  Everywhere you turned you could see something new and unique in the woodlands, such as the exotic and delicate flower of the jack-in-the pulpit. PPL Wetlands -2

Or the flowers on the may apples or mandrakes. PPL Wetlands -17

And their was an abundance of wildlife too. The trees were filled with the songs of the many species of birds that have returned to our woods including the many species of warblers, including the always beautiful yellow warbler. PPL Wetlands birds -29

And in the distance I spied this red tailed hawk.PPL Wetlands birds -1

The most common, and  nosiest of the bird species were the catbirds, PPL Wetlands birds -2

the red-winged blackbirdsPPL Wetlands birds -30

and the robins. I again got to close to nest of this robin and he or she let me know it, fluttering from limb to limb in the branches above my head. PPL Wetlands birds -5

Shortly after I arrived at the wetlands the sun came out, and, as I walked along the canals and waterways  I watched the frogs and turtles crawl on the  banks, logs and rocks to enjoy it’s warmth.  Some of the logs got quite crowded.PPL Wetlands -15

And some  turtles who  were able to find a place all to themselves.PPL Wetlands -7

And most of the frogs seemed to like to be alone in a isolated spot. They are not easy to photograph.PPL Wetlands -28

although I was able to get pretty close, almost eye to eye, with this one. PPL Wetlands -44

 As I continued my walk to the river lands area of the preserve I found that the pink azalea, or honeysuckle as my dad called them,  where still in bloomPPL Wetlands -10

and many of the fern species were also putting forth sporangium.PPL Wetlands -9

I walked to lake Took-A- While, where i found a number of families fishing or celebrating Mother’s Day in  the adjacent picnic grounds.PPL Wetlands -33

I noticed some storm clouds in the distance so began to make my way back to the wetlands, but still seeing a lot of birds along the way, including a number of Baltimore orioles. PPL Wetlands birds -25

I saw this tiny and shy bird in the thick brush , I think it is a sedge wren. PPL Wetlands birds -6

And I was fortunate to see another one of these colorful birds, I  saw one near my home during the week, a scarlet tanager. PPL Wetlands birds -35

As i was watching the scarlet tanager I noticed a raptor of some sort high overhead. I couldn’t make out what it was until I got home and cropped the image. And, much to my surprise, I found out it was a bald eagle! PPL Wetlands birds -37

this song sparrow seemed to have captured more then it could swallow. Here is a link to some more  of the birds I photographed on my hike .

PPL Wetlands birds -20

On the way back I noticed the young oaks leaves. The oaks are always one of the last trees to put forth leaves in the Spring. i love to see them, but it is a bitter sweet feeling. They are like the caboose on the Spring train. when they appear you know almost all of the plants have come back to life now, and that special time of year is ending. There will be flowers, and fruits and birds and insects throughout the summer but it will never be as green as it is in May. PPL Wetlands -20

The wind picked up and  I wasn’t able to make it to my car before the rain began. I got wet but didn’t mind it at all,  After it is the rain that is making everything so green and alive down here in the wetlands.  Here is a link to some more photographs I took on my hike today. Wetlands -47Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night. ~Rainer Maria Rilke