A Neighbourhood Outing

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Osprey

Wow, it’s been a long time since I have posted anything new.  The pandemic has certainly changed a lot of people’s lives, mine included.  We used to travel a lot and I would take a lot of photos but since we have been on lock down, we have not been out…..until one day last week.  We went for a drive, just in our area, so we could do some photography.

It’s amazing what you can find in “your own backyard” so to speak.

We made two stops, very close to home, and we were lucky to see some Ospreys, a heron, a muskrat and a bunch of ducks and assorted birds.   No moose or bears, which is what I like to photograph but wildlife nonetheless!  All in all it was a good day and as my birthday is this Saturday and we are still in lockdown (in Canada) we are going to get up early and take a drive.  So fingers crossed we see more wildlife of some sort……….

So our first stop was a small pond and we saw quite a bit in this area.  There was a Hooded Merganser couple who were not too skittish, a muskrat and an Osprey nest.  Just down from this small pond is a river which is where we saw a couple more ducks.

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Hooded Mergansers (male and female)
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Muskrat
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Red Winged Blackbird

I stood watching the Osprey nest for quite awhile and finally he flew off, which was pretty cool.  I think I got some pretty good shots.  I waited patiently and he flew back to his nest.

They build their nests high up in trees, on man made nesting platforms or hydro poles, somewhere high.  If you haven’t seen a nest, here is what they generally look like.  I was quite far from it so I did the best I could with my lens.  Ospreys mate for life and the male is usually the one who leaves the nest for food to bring back and defend the nest.  The young ones will leave the nest by about 8-10 weeks.  Hopefully we can go back and see the young before they leave.

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Leaving the nest ………………

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And coming back………………..

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Next we walked over to the river and saw a couple of ducks.  One was swimming the same way as I was walking and I swear he was eyeballing me. that is what it looks like in the photo anyways !

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Mallard Duck eyeballing me
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Common Merganser (male)

Our second, and last stop, was on the Bay of Quinte where we were so close to a heron.  I didn’t even see him at first, I was walking the shoreline and there he was fishing for his breakfast.  He was not bothered by us at all so we were both fortunate enough to get some good shots.

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Waiting and watching for fish
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Finally success !

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See in these two photos, (above and below) the heron has the fish in his throat.   They stab their prey, flip it into the right position, (which is head first) and swallow the fish whole.  His throat will bulge out as the fish makes it’s way down.

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And one last photo of the Osprey, he was staring at me while I was taking his photo.  That’s what it looks like anyways!

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I hope you are all doing well during these trying times.  Hopefully we can beat this and get back to our lives that we all miss.

Thanks for reading and hope you enjoyed my photos.

7 thoughts on “A Neighbourhood Outing”

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