We started out at 9 with, perhaps 25 people. It was supposed to last 90 minutes. We ended at about 1 p.m. with 5 or 6 left. We had a great time, even though we're not experienced in recognizing too many bird calls. But we did learn, again, that if you slow down and look around, there are fascinating sites.
We were not 3 steps from the start when someone -- her name was Phyllis if memory serves -- recognized a yellow throated cuckoo. This, we were told, was a rather rare bird in these parts and the group was suitably excited, even though to me it looked pretty much like a bird in a tree far away. And I didn't hear the damned thing say a word.
We marched onward through the bog walk and came upon a yellow breasted warbler, which did seem to sing a lovely tune. Apparently yellow is the color of the day.
We found several goregeous wildflowers. These trips to the Arboretum always make me want to come home and roto-til my lawn.
Click here for a nice picture of a purple wildflower.
But back to the birds. We saw hummingbird perched on the top of a dead tree in the bog. They don't call them "dead trees," at the Arboretum, however. They call them "snags," because "dead tree" suggests no life and this one clearly had a hummingbird on it. I can't say as I've ever seen a hummingbird perched before. I just put a hummingbird feeder out front of Bob's Arboretum, but so far... nothing.
I found this woodpecker on a dead tr...err...snag.
And this cardinal, while no big deal, I suppose, was kind of cool because, well, I just happen to like cardinals.
We also saw -- or heard, I forget which -- a yellow somethingorother. If I were any kind of birdwatcher at all, I would've brought a pad and paper along to record our various discoveries. But the fact remains, I am no kind of birdwatcher at all, I guess.
We did find a red
Walking back, there was some commotion with some birds. "Somethings got them pissed," the naturalist said, invoking the naturalist lingo. "Maybe it's an owl," Carolie said. She walked a couple more steps and found that she was correct.
And here's an interesting discovery. On the wildflower walk, there are these large plants that cup water. Some birds like to drink out of them, and apparently tree frogs like to sit in them and do whatever tree frogs do for entertainment.
That was pretty much it. We spent a little time walking around some of the gardens at the Arboretum. This place can turn anyone into a decent photographer.
That picture doesn't do it justice, Click here for a better picture.
Oh, look! The mate of the common loon.
Before we left, I renewed my membership at the Arboretum. I wish it weren't an hour away, but perhaps it's best that it is. It's a good chance to escape the overdeveloped world of Woodbury. Our good feeling from the morning lasted about a half hour, until we passed the first gas station and noticed that a gallon is now $3.09.
Maybe I didn't need that pad-and-paper afterall, since I distinctly recall, now, seeing a red-necked price gouger today.