Sunday 10 comments

This week in the Northland

Most every day on our travels we cross the St. Croix River.  Jim always slows down so I can check for eagles and other things near the water.  Friday night I saw one out on the little island in the middle of the river and then on Saturday there was another one in the same place.


When I crossed the river on Saturday I noticed some guys in a canoe, so I pulled over to take their picture.  

I asked them if they’d had any luck and the guy said he had one on the line right now, but didn’t know what it was.  So as they go under the bridge, he’s reeling in his fish.  He gives out a whoop and says it’s a walleye!  Cool!  
P1100843I asked him to hold it up so I could take a picture.  He was more than happy to oblige.


That was exciting and he said it would be good eating for supper that night.  No doubt! 

A couple other exciting things happened this week. We saw our first fawn of the year.  Very small and probably only a few days old.  Another first was finding an endangered wildflower.  We were walking along a dirt road when I saw a pale purple flower growing along the edge.  I had no idea what it was and when I got back home, I checked my field guide, with no luck.  So I sent a picture of it to a friend and she told me all about it.  It’s a wild clematis, an endangered flower and she wanted to go see it so she could register the sighting with the US Forest Service.  It really is a pretty flower.   
P1100787Nesting News

Bluebirds and tree swallows are sitting in the nest boxes.  Phoebe is in her usual spot.  Mrs. Robin picked a very strange tree for her nest and the sapsucker has drilled out a hole for her brood.   Always something going on around here…and I love it all!P1100664P1100666

Friday 9 comments

Wildlife Moments

I’ve seen so many cool things this week.  I didn’t get pictures of most of them because they were short moments of things I’ve never seen or heard before.  Not to go into too much detail, here’s a rundown of some of my wildlife moments.

  • Watching the Hummingbird feed on a little wild oat flower

  • Having a gray fox cross the road in front of me

  • Seeing a merganser sitting on the wood duck house with a watchful eye on the green heron that was getting close to her nest.  All the while a tree swallow was dive bombing the merganser because it was using the wood duck house to raise it’s family.

  • Hearing the sapsuckers pounding on just about every thing…metal, plastic and wood.

  • While sitting in my blind, I could see turtles doing a lot of swirling around in the water.  Mating I presume.

  • Seeing herons and hawks grab little fish out of the pond.

  • The tree swallows, robins, woodpeckers, phoebes are all busy with nesting duties.

  • And then today while I was sitting at the computer, I saw this.  Four different kinds of beautiful birds, all feeding without any bullying or trying to hog all the seed for itself.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, Redpoll and Goldfinch

It’s really a beautiful time of the year right now.  I’m not going to say a word about the ticks, black flies or mosquitoes because I’ve waited too long for all these wildlife moments.  This is why I love spring in the Northland so much.

Sunday 6 comments

An FYI Blog

I know I had problems with Blogger the other day and I've read where others have also.  Well, here's the poop on what was going on.

(Cross-posted from the Blogger Buzz blog)

What a frustrating day. We’re very sorry that you’ve been unable to publish to Blogger for the past 20.5 hours. We’re nearly back to normal—you can publish again, and in the coming hours posts and comments that were temporarily removed should be restored. Thank you for your patience while we fix this situation. We use Blogger for our own blogs, so we’ve also felt your pain.

Here’s what happened: during scheduled maintenance work Wednesday night, we experienced some data corruption that impacted Blogger’s behavior. Since then, bloggers and readers may have experienced a variety of anomalies including intermittent outages, disappearing posts, and arriving at unintended blogs or error pages. A small subset of Blogger users (we estimate 0.16%) may have encountered additional problems specific to their accounts. Yesterday we returned Blogger to a pre-maintenance state and placed the service in read-only mode while we worked on restoring all content: that’s why you haven’t been able to publish. We rolled back to a version of Blogger as of Wednesday May 11, so your posts since then were temporarily removed. Those are the posts that we’re in the progress of restoring.

Again, we are very sorry for the impact to our authors and readers. We try hard to ensure Blogger is always available for you to share your thoughts and opinions with the world, and we’ll do our best to prevent this from happening again.

Posted by Eddie Kessler, Tech Lead/Manager, Blogger
Friday 5 comments

Spring has Sprung…Kinda

Well, we got back up here on Wednesday after a couple very warm days in Madison.  Whew, not used to 80’s and high humidity.  Glad to get back to the cool temps up here.  It’s really amazing how quickly things change.  There’s lots more green on the lawn, in the underbrush and tree tops.  The hummingbirds and orioles have arrived and the pretty yellow marsh marigolds are blooming all over the place.   P1100364I’ve seen trilliums blooming…trillium

the first mushrooms of the season…P1100372

  a young snapping turtle… rescued snapping turtle

and a yellow warbler singing it’s little heart out. yellow warbler

We even stopped at the garden center and got some tomato and cucumber plants to put in the raised beds Jim built last fall.   P1100351These plants will get lots of TLC.  They’ll be fenced in to keep the deer and whatever else is lurking out there away from them.  He also built a framework around the raised bed so if it gets too cold, he can cover the whole works with plastic.  Lots of thought went into our little garden.  Sure hope they do good.  Please cross your fingers with me that we get a few tomatoes this year.

Tuesday 2 comments

We may be onto something here

The other night Jim put the water jugs in the feeders again.  Mr. Coon came along, climbed the little tree, saw the jug and moved on.  






Lots of rain in the forecast this week, so we decided to come home for a few days, but we’ll be back by the end of the week.

Thursday 5 comments

Caught in the Act

No surprise in catching the raccoon in the feeder.  We didn’t know he used the faux tree to gain access, but we do now.  Notice the coffee cans in each feeder.SUNP0127


Now it’s on the ground, but it wasn’t enough to stop Mr. Coon from eating the sunflower seeds.


SUNP0132So now we have to decide if we want to leave the faux tree there for the birds or take it down to keep Mr. Coon from raiding the feeder.  Most likely it will stay.

Wednesday 5 comments

Signs of Spring

Whenever we’re out for a walk I keep my eyes open looking for any sign of spring.  On Monday I finally saw some wildflowers!  It was just a day after seeing snow on this ground cover.  P1100264

Here they are!  Rue Anemone…the prettiest flowers this spring, mainly because they were the first.


Today while driving back to the cabin, Jim spotted this little fox along the edge of a pond.  P1100282-1We pulled over, shut the car off and I started taking pictures.  It was really cool the way it laid down and watched me!


 P1100285 P1100296Just like the deer, it’s coat is all faded out too. 


We got a daytime picture of what we think is the bear that visited us the other night.  PICT0036It’s possible that Jim scared it away for awhile.  He bobby trapped the bird feeder by setting a plastic coffee can full of water in it.  We’re thinking it went something like this…Mr.  Bear comes along and heads over to the bird feeder (which is hinged to tip). Usually the hinged top prevents the bear from breaking the whole thing.  Anyway, when it stood up to eat the seed, the feeder tray tipped and the cold water (hopefully) dumped all over Mr. Bear.  We didn’t see this happen, but we haven’t seen him since the morning the coffee container was laying empty on the ground.

Sunday 5 comments

Still Waiting for Spring

I’m not going to complain because at least there’s no snow (well, not much that stays around for long), but come on, this is getting really old.  I’d love to see some fresh green leaves and maybe a spring flower or two.  But nooooooo!  It’s still all brown, bleached and faded out.  Even the deer look rough.      April 30In a few weeks all this old hair will fall off and she’ll have her beautiful red summer coat on.  There’s hardly any green stuff out there for the deer and bear to eat.  On Friday night this one came by, broke one of the bird feeders and got his picture taken.  What a moon face, huh?  Time to take the feeders in each night and to keep the garbage in the shed.  Yeah, it got into that too.  April 29 Bear-1

April 29 Bear-2