When last we met it was snowing...and then came the thaw.
The picture above is looking upstream of the small pond northeast of the nature center. There was still thick ice, but the warm temperature and rains had melted the snow covering. Notice the dark drown in the background. This is mud and silt being washed over the surface of the ice. The picture was take on Monday. By Wednesday, the same shot looked like the picture below.
Six inches of wet snow fell on top of slush. All of which then fused together when the temperature plunged again. By Friday, bright sun began the melting process...again. And with predicted temperatures raising above freezing this coming week, it will all be gone by next weekend.
Through it all life goes on. Back in Part 4, I showed a picture of some mourning dove features and speculated on the culprit. Well, this past week as I was walking around the nature center, a sharp-shinned hawk flew right over my head and landed on a branch near our resident red-shouldered hawk's enclosure. Later on the opposite side of the nature center near the bird feeding area, I discovered a another pile of dove feathers. Can you say "food chain"? Bird seed, dove, hawk.
The extreme weather has been tough on all of us-humans and wildlife. And everywhere I go, I hear the same thing - "I am done with winter!" Fear not. Lurking below the snow are lots of spring wildflowers and amphibians biding their time.
Wahkeena will reopen for the 2015 season on Wednesday, March 18, Wed.- Sun. 8 AM- 4:30 Pm