Ice Pellets, Waves and a Squirrel Fight / Bluffs: February 6, 2019

When I heard on the news that ice pellets would be falling this morning, I wasn’t quite sure what was meant. Now I know. It is tiny grains of snow which sting your eyes and face; especially with the high winds that were coming off the lake in -4 degree temperature. By the time we finished, the ice pellets were turning into freezing rain.

Here are some views of the area this morning:

The high winds created some terrific waves:

Red Ash and Crack Willow are common here:

Red Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica)
Crack Willow (Salix fragilis)

This morning’s group:

and some of our birds:

Species list:  Canada goose, mallard, American black duck, bufflehead, greater scaup, long-tailed duck, herring gull, ring-billed gull, rock pigeon, house sparrow, house sparrow, dark-eyed junco.  (12 species)

Bufflehead (male)
Rock Pigeon
Buffleheads and Mallards
Ring-billed Gulls
Herring Gulls with Ring-bill in front
Long-tailed Duck (male) and Greater Scaup (male)
White-winged Scoter (male)

Fighting is a regular part of the life of a squirrel. Here we have an Eastern Gray Squirrel taking on a cousin who, due to a northern adaptation called melanism, is black. The fur was flying.

COMING UP: February 10 in Friends of Miles: Bats: Milos Radakovich

February 13 in Articles: Mallards


I spent the summer traveling. I got halfway across my backyard.

Louis Agassiz Swiss Naturalist

Miles Hearn

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