It is still April and the weather seems to tease with warm weather and then cold. 38 degrees with a 20 or more mph wind is not “pleasant” weather to be out on the lake. Oh, the water temperature is still cold so if you get splashed, it is not nice. Then again, last Saturday, it was warm and calm and people were enjoying the lake. It was completely calm on Sunday morning and it was pleasant canoeing.
A few things to be aware of are that buoys may have been moved by the ice or not present and the water is cold. Be careful out there if you venture forth.
Along the shores, song sparrows are singing loudly, claiming territory. If you are along the shores and can hear them, they are a wonderful spring-like trill.
Common mergansers are around with the males being white bodied and with dark green heads. This contrasts with the females that are grey with brown heads. The males are around until the end of may or so and then head for the ocean leaving the females to raise the babies. They feed themselves but need protection from predators. There are also hooded mergansers around although they are migrating. A female is shown below.
It seems like palm warblers are everywhere. They are early migrators seem to be all bright yellow but they have a ruffous crown.
The trail through the Heath Preserve has a nice view of the Heath. This is looking north.
Another viewpoint gives Copplecrown. The pines that are seen actually line Pleasant Valley Road.
The swampy areas in the Heath Preserve are starting to think about greening up. These green shoots are about 4 inches tall. Spring is coming although, at times, it seems slow.
Lake views are still without any new green.
Signs are now along the North Beach to indicate that the beach is closed until July 1st for nesting birds. Please respect the signs and you might also help to protect the beach by saying something to anyone who is not respecting the signs.
One interesting thing that was seen is what is left of this hemlock tree. Last summer, it was seen in the water with small branches and needles. Now, it looks like it has been “de-branched” and has its bark removed. The thought is that the moving ice, as it was warming and cooling and making pressure ridges or during the ice out that had icebergs floating around, the ice did a little pruning…..