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Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Some New Bird Visitors


We've had some new & different birds visiting the feeder this year.


 This rose-breasted Grosbeak visited my feeders this year.

 This striking red-headed woodpecker has not been seen on our farm
 the entire time we've been here, 19 years.
What a surprise. 
I hope he sticks around.


We have lots of white-breasted nuthatches, but this is the first time I've spotted this cutie.
A red-rested nuthatch!

Friday, April 5, 2019

Early spring Hiking



Eldest granddaughter is on Spring break, 
so we visited Shades State Park for some early Spring hiking.

 Ok here we go!

 Whoa!  Lots of steps!

And a few ladders!

Exploring.

Walking the streambed.

We've got the whole park to ourselves.

We found a double waterfall.

Good rugged fun!

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Spring Snowstorm

 Rain turning to snow makes a full creek flowing through the snowy woods.

Sunrise after the storm

 Fortifying for the cold

Under the snow umbrella

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Spring Wildflowers

After the snow melted, 
the wildflowers started popping up.

 One of the first to appear are the harbingers of spring, tiny flowers that grow low to the ground.

The next day, I saw these hepatica or liverwort.
Spring has sprung!

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Sounds of Spring

The spring peepers, a type of tiny frog,
 have emerged from their winter slumber and are looking for mates.
Such loud sounds from such little creatures.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Maple Sugarin' Time

Its that time again!
Time to make maple syrup.

 We tried something new this year, sealed buckets with tubing.
We've had ants get into the sap in the past.
This works great, no ants!

 The hardest part!

Boiling the sap on the trusty evaporator.
We got about 55 gallons of sap this year.


 We do a final boil inside where we can regulate the process.
Then we fill the bottles,

Cap them,

 Clean the sticky off them,


And finally, heat shrink a cover on the cap.

2019 batch is in the books!

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Shed Season

So yesterday, I saw this.

 Notice the buck only has one antler?
Its shed season, when all the bucks drop their antlers and begin growing new ones.

See that big hole in his head?  
He's just dropped his left antler.

So today,  I took a hike and this is what I found!

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Antlers

Our bucks still have antlers on March 3rd.
Soon they'll be dropping them and shed hunting season will begin.


Saturday, March 2, 2019

Bo Knows

Our only remaining farm dog is Bo.
He loves the cold.


Rolling on ice is a favorite winter pastime.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

First Sign of Spring

I heard the first redwing blackbird today.
Since many robins stay here year round, the redwings are a better harbinger of spring.
When you hear that familiar "Conk-a-ree" you know spring can't be far way.


Sunday, February 24, 2019

Windy Storm

We had strong winds and bitter cold this weekend.
And lost a few trees.




Thursday, February 21, 2019

Nature is Never Static

The woods and creek are constantly changing.
Lots of snow melt and runoff create new creek banks.
And the creek slowly changes course.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Friday, February 1, 2019

Ice Sculptures

Snowmelt, flooding and refreezing.
Mother Nature created some pretty cool ice sculptures!



Looks like hand-dipped icicles.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Whitetails

The whitetails have missed the birdseed buffet!



Even the big boys have shown up!