Muskrat at Humber Bay: February 7, 2022

We had a good variety of wildlife on a mild morning at Humber Bay. Swans, geese and many species of ducks. A few species were in a spring mood and burst forth in song. A House Finch, a Red-winged Blackbird (who likely spent the winter near here) and my first singing Song Sparrow in months.

House Finch (male)
Red-winged Blackbird (male)
Red-winged Blackbird (male)
Song Sparrow
Song Sparrow

The biggest surprise however, was a long look at a Muskrat sitting on the ice eating some aquatic vegetation. Muskrats are nor much bigger than rats and have dense, rich brown fur. They also eat clams, frogs and fish.

Muskrat with Mallards
Muskrat
Muskrat
Muskrat

Other birds:

Long-tailed Duck (male)
Pekin Duck
White-winged Scoter (male)
Trumpeter Swans
Trumpeter Swans (juvenile)
Bufflehead (male)
Downy Woodpecker (female)
Red-breasted Merganser (female)
House Sparrow (male)
Greater Scaup (female)
American Black Ducks
House Sparrow (female)
Northern Cardinal (male)
Greater Scaup
Lesser Scaup (female)
Greater Scaup (male)
Canada Geese
Ring-billed Gulls
European Starlings
Mallard (male) and Bufflehead (female)
Common Goldeneye (male)
Mute Swan
Northern Cardinal (male)
Mute Swan, Common Goldeneye (female) and Redhead (male)
Herring Gull (juvenile)
Pekin Duck
White-winged Scoter (male)
Mourning Dove

Park scenes:

Today’s group:

MAILBOX

Thank-you to Leah Salvador-Ferrone for this.

Hello Miles,

I’ve had some luck in January with some good photo opportunities with the snowy owl at Sam Smith. Some regulars at the park have named her Odette. All of my photos of Odette were taken at dusk. I especially like the ones with the moon behind her, it felt like a very special encounter with her.

NATURE POETRY

Little January
Tapped at my door today.
And said, “Put on your winter wraps,
And come outdoors to play.”                    – Winifred M. Gales (1761–1839)

Miles Hearn

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