This cheerful Gray Catbird, who I have named “Cat Stevens”, has returned for the Summer. His day (and thus mine, as well) starts around 5:00 a.m. with continuous merry outbursts of a variety of songs delivered from a nearby treetop.
Along with the arrival of the stately Canada Geese each Spring at Wachusett Meadow, I look forward to the quiet presence of the brilliantly iridescent male Mallard and the subtly colored female Mallard with her surprising blue spot. I especially enjoy the spunky Hooded Mergansers, the male flaunting his bold stripes, and both male and female sporting their punk hairdos.
Wachusett Meadow’s Wildlife Pond is home to beavers year-round, as well as an array of seasonal guests such as Wood Ducks that roost in boxes above the water. Great Blue Herons nest in the tops of dead trees, and Canada Geese cruise both the waterway and the land. Let the Summer rentals begin!
Each April, the Wachusett Meadow Audubon holds a Sheep and Wool Festival Day.
Sheep wool at this time of year is luxurious, with a variety of colors, textures and patterns. Included here are my color and black and white photos, taken before the shearing, which seek to emphasize the beautiful natural material of these engaging creatures.
Digitally enhanced photos from even a simple point-and-shoot camera can appear like paintings. In addition to trying to achieve good photographs, I also enjoy creating transformed images of my favorite birds.
There are many early indicators of a seasonal shift from Winter to Spring at Wachusett Meadow Farm in New England — an increase in snowshoe travel, strong shadows and patterns, running streams, melting snow patches on stone walls, diminishing icicles, sheep wool thick enough for shearing and diverse creatures sunbathing and feeding.
The clouds accumulating before last week’s Winter storm felt ominous, yet were mesmerizing. In relationship to the landscape, they provided an experience of dramatic movement during a shift in atmospheric pressure.
My point-and-shoot camera enables me to see amazing details, even at a great distance. During a recent walk at Mass Audubon Wachusett Meadow, I thought I saw a nest swinging near the top of a tree. Thanks to my camera, I was delighted to discover that it was really this gorgeous Barred Owl!