Saturday, December 27, 2014


Mississippi backwaters just south of the Minnesota/Iowa boarder. Some of the backwaters are not iced in as of Dec. 26, 2014.  There is much less ice now than there was in mid November.  Somehow the weather for November and December got transposed.

Immature Bald Eagle-Houston County, Mn.  Saw 16 Bald Eagles on a  4 hour road trip from Spring Valley Mn to New Albin, Iowa.  Most were mature adults.

Bald Eagle, backwaters of Mississippi, New Albin, Iowa

Found this Deer Mouse on the ice road not far from home.  I thought it was ill but it seemed fine when I got within about 10 feet it raced off the road.  Mice and voles have been abundant this year.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


Beaver Dam on S. Branch of Root River in Forestville State Park.  This dam is just upstream from one that was there two years ago. It is located about 80 yards downstream from the first road bridge in Forestville Park.  We have also seen dams about 1 mile upstream, on Forestville Creek, and Canfield Creek within the park in the last few years.  Beaver are quite common in the streams of S.E. Minnesota.  There are also beaver in the old iron ore ponds south of Spring Valley. We have been canoeing for about 50 years now and did not see any beaver until about the early 1970's.  During the 1950's and 1960's we saw none.

Beaver cuttings along side the river in Forestville Park.  This tree got hung up, as they often do.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

This female Sharp-shinned Hawk has been hunting the birds at our feeders off and on for weeks.  Got this photo of her Dec. 8th outside our picture window.  Her favorite prey is the small black & white juncos that feed on the ground. She is between Blue Jay and Crow sized.

The feeders this winter have been fairly busy with numbers of birds, but few northern birds.  We have 6-8 Purple Finches everyday, but we have seen only one Pine Siskin(for 15 minutes), this year.  Have these birds at our feeders: Blue Jay, Cardinal, Chickadee, White breasted nuthatch, house sparrow, tree sparrow, (the Fox and White throated sparrow pulled out about a week ago), junco, woodpeckers-Red breasted, Hairy, Downy, and Pileated(not at feeder but seen daily), occasional pheasant, and occasional Sharp-shined hawk.