I visited Riverside only twice in July, specifically July 7 and July 20. I’m not exactly sure why I made it to this near location only twice last month, except that when I look at my “drivel” which is a monthly accumulation of journaling, it seems I thought about it often enough. Perhaps it had more to do with the weather – did it rain the night before, was it particularly hot? – or other things that come up and compel me to action or inaction.
There were not a lot of birds on either occasion, but I managed some interesting captures anyway. The light on the 7th was full of stark contrasts. The pose of the Great Blue Heron below intrigued me as he emerged from a dark background.
When I moved and took his photo again through some vegetation he appeared a bit brighter and still looked as if he was laughing or trying to say something. Maybe he was just hot.
Later, a Great Egret was also available for a distant pose.
There were some Common Grackles on the shore. This may have been the last time I saw them.
House Sparrows rarely pose for a picture, so when this one posed, I obliged.
I don’t remember exactly when we had the big storm that knocked down the trees but it was back in June. In any event, a couple large logs remain on the trail. I am able to scale the one below, and the other one is now a walk-around, unless the river gets really high as the detour runs very close to the water.
There has been a Mallard hen and her ducklings tucked into one of the little inlets by the Riverside Lawn trail and I have been monitoring their progress. Here’s what some of them looked like on the 7th.
Red-winged Blackbirds were scarce. I barely recognized the darker one.
But it was a good day for turtles.
This was not the most beautiful background for an Eastern Comma Butterfly, but I took its picture anyway. I’m just happy to see any butterflies these days.
On the 20th, a Great Blue Heron was present again. The water levels were low that day.
I counted three Great Blue Herons that morning. The one below is fond of this spot on the Indian Gardens side of the river.
It was another day of bright and dark contrasts.
This White-tailed Deer was in the tall grass close to the paved walk in Riverside.
The shallow water left a raised area out near the middle of the river where it turns a corner, and there was a lone Killdeer foraging in the mud.
There are usually a few Mourning Doves near the foot bridge…
A view from the foot bridge yielded distant birds standing in the shallow water.
Canada Geese were lounging on another rocky raised area.
And at the end of my walk, a Mallard, still a bit wet, was walking out of the water.
As of this morning, I have been to Riverside four times already this month and have seen more birds, so I hope to be back soon with more photos. And as long as my knee holds up and the weather is nice, I will continue to go out every morning. Because you never know what you may see.