Sunday, September 30, 2012

Fall Warblers

I got up early on Saturday to walk at Heinz NWR and was well rewarded for my trouble.  I saw lots and lots of warblers including these four.  Top to bottom: American Redstart, Palm Warbler, Black-throated Green Warbler, Northern Parula.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

African Cichlids

My favorite tank at Adventure Aquarium was this one.  It not only held all these amazing cichlids but also two hippos.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Adventure Aquarium

Another day off from school means another trip some place cool.  This time we drove over to Adventure Aquarium in Camden, NJ.  We had a great time looking at fish, hippos, and whatnot.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

More Lindau Babies

The swans weren't the only ones using the harbor to raise a family.  We saw a number of Eurasian Coots and their young (bottom photo) as well as families of Great-crested Grebes (top photos).  I really wished we'd planned to stay in Lindau longer!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Swans in Lindau

We had a wonderful time in Lindau, Germany.  It was a bit rainy but the Germany vs Italy soccer match was on and the atmosphere was quite festive.  We ate dinner at a fantastic restaurant in view of the harbor.  I kept jumping up from my seat to investigate bird sitings.  After dinner we walked around the harbor to find this family of swans sleeping between the boats.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Field of Yellow

Did I mention I love Fall?  This breathtaking field of yellow flowers was heavily populated with Monarch butterflies.  Quite a view.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Fall Birds

Yesterday was a beautiful day for a walk.  It was, reportedly, not a good day for seeing migrants.  I personally still can't do the math on that one but if you think like a bird it basically amounts to: good flying keep on going, bad flying drop down and hang out for a while.  So we weren't expecting too much but I had some good sitings nonetheless.  The top two are Northern Parulas, the third is TBA, and the last is a juvenile male Common Yellowthroat.

Update: The third one is a Palm Warbler

Thursday, September 20, 2012


Lesser...I think...Yellowlegs.  Earlier in August the water level in the impoundment at Heinz NWR decreased enough to encourage the shore birds to visit.  I made a stab at getting all the id's straight but it's really quite hard to do and I'm not sure how much progress I made.  Luckily there's always next year.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Not sure how it got to be Wednesday without a post.  I do know by the time I got home yesterday I was exhausted.  These are photos from the past week or so, a little reminder to get back outside.  The bird is, I believe, a Red-eyed Vireo.

Sunday, September 16, 2012


I could make an argument for each season as my favorite.  I usually find myself saying "_______ is my favorite season" as ________ season approaches.  The only season I don't like is whichever one has long periods without sun.  As long at the sun is out (at least in part) every few days I am happy.  But having said all of that Fall really is one of my favorite seasons.  I have spent almost all of my life either as a student, the parent of a student, or a teacher and I have never lost the sense that Fall is the time to get things done.  I love the sense of crisp productivity that fall inspires.  Two weeks into it and I already have clarified a lot of the confusion left over from summer.  I have plans and I know what I'm doing. 

This will undoubtedly be followed by a post complaining about how I don't know what I doing in the studio.  That "season" is more like a monthly cycle or, as the child rearing books explained it, part of an endlessly cork-screwing cycle of equilibrium and disequilibrium.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Lovely Fall Weekend

So far it's an amazing and busy fall weekend.  I updated my site adding the latest watercolor paintings.  And while Olivia spent Saturday at the band carwash, Matt was at work, and I volunteered at the Cradle of Birding Festival at Heinz NWR.