Sunday, April 26, 2009

April showers brought LOTS of flowers!

Spring is definitely in full swing now. There are tons of wildflowers in bloom, too many to list here, although I will mention a few. Showy orchis is just beginning to bloom. I know today is Sunday, and we will be closed for the next two days, as usual, but you will be able to see it all next week for sure. This year seems to be a great year for Jack-in-the-pulpits. They seem to be popping up everywhere! Also, the Wild geranium is beginning to show its flowers.

This morning Tom and I did some birding. There are so many birds back now, it's crazy! I got my first look at a Yellow-throated warbler - so beautiful! One of the Scarlet tanagers also let me look at him. I don't think I could ever get tired of looking at that bird! So here is the list of new birds that we have seen/heard since I posted the last list:
Yellow-throated warbler
Black-throated green warbler
Black and white warbler
Hooded warbler
Green Heron
Solitary sandpipers
American Bittern
White-eyed vireo
Scarlet tanager
Rose-breasted grosbeak
Blue-gray gnatcatcher
Gray catbird
Chipping sparrow
and various other birds yet to be identified!

Also, the Pine siskens are still here as well as at least one red-breasted nuthatch. And, the goslings are out and about now.

Happy birding!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Blink and you miss it!

I think the next couple of days are going to be one of those times in the spring when it seems like you've blinked, and everything has changed. The warm sun following the rainy days we've had is going to make stuff pop like gangbusters I think! We've already seen more flowers in bloom like the Long-spur violet and Twin leaf. The Crab apple on the terrace is ready to go, and it will be beautiful. We've got Wildflower walks this weekend - on both days - and you can check the calendar at the bottom of this page for more details.

I wanted to go ahead and put up a list of birds we've seen/heard so far. Here it is:
Barred owl
Red-shouldered hawk
Ruby crowned kinglet
Winter wren
Yellow-rumped warbler
Wood thrush
Wood ducks
Red-breasted nuthatch
Pine sisken
Pine warbler
White-throated sparrow
Red-eyed vireo
and all the other "normal" birds like cardinals, titmice, chickadees, towhees, etc.

I have no doubt that after this weekend, we'll have more to add to the list!

One last note about the Barred owls. If you come out, there is a good chance of seeing or hearing them. They have been consistently seen and heard in the Shelter trail area of the preserve. Yesterday, Tom and I had our best look at what was probably the male, and we did not have binoculars!

See you this weekend!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Welcome to Wahkeena

Welcome to the Wahkeena blog! I meant to have the first post before opening weekend (April 4, 5), but time flies when you're having fun! And we have a lot of fun here at Wahkeena. Sometimes too much fun!

Spring is in full swing. Flowers are blooming, birds are singing, and trees are leafing out, and frogs have been clucking, snoring, and peeping. Bloodroot has been blooming since last week, and the Cut-leaved toothwort is everywhere. The patch of Marsh marigold is in bloom as well as Squirrel corn and Dutchman's breeches, and I can't forget the Rue anemone. As I'm sitting here writing this I can hear the Louisana waterthrush singing. He's our fist warbler to come back for the breeding season. Lots of Pine siskins are still visiting our feeders, and the Pheobes are building their nests. The race is on between trees leafing out, and warblers coming back! Cherry and Buckeye trees are well on their way. Oh, and the Serviceberries are in full bloom with the Redbuds to follow next. All the Woodfrog eggs have hatched and you can see tiny little tadpoles in the frog ponds. You can also see the Spotted salamander egg masses in the frog ponds.

Things are changing all the time around here, and there is always something new to see. We see things that we've never seen before on a regular basis. I hope that you'll come out and see something new too!