Sunday, April 01, 2012

10 minute birding

After a week of driving back and forth from Strathcona, mostly in the rain, I woke up the last morning there to see blue sky outside the window, promising a good day, at last, to get in a quick tour of the gardens before I came home to Delta. A deceptive promise it was; by the time I'd done the morning chores and packed, the clouds had settled in again.

But it wasn't raining - yet - when it was time to leave. The car was parked just a few steps from MacLean Park and the Paneficio; I went over to see what Valerie and Arnt were displaying this month. I stood for a while admiring a reclaimed wood bench, visualizing a room to build around it.

Behind me, a bird screamed; not a crow as I would expect in Strathcona. I turned and looked for it, finally seeing it high in the branches of the closest tree, barely visible in the low light; about crow-sized, but with a splotchy white breast.

Could be a merlin. Too small for a peregrine, I think.

I walked around and around the tree, trying to find a vantage point where no branches would be in the way. It was hopeless; from every angle, he was sheltered. How do these birds ever fly in and out of such thickets without banging into a dozen branches on the way? Amazing!

Back view.

Another front view, this time showing the barred tail.

The grass under the shadiest park of the park never does very well. This year, they've plowed it under and planted a ground cover I don't recognize.

Tiny plants, the leaves almost flat against the ground, the flowers at most two inches high.

The flowers sit upright in a three-lobed calyx tray.

Spray of pink tubular flowers, and a blue door.

I took a last few photos of flowers beside the car before it started to rain again. I drove home and we went to Home Depot to buy plants and potting soil in the rain.

March came in like a wimpy lion; it went out like a grumpy lamb.


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1 comment:

Powell River Books said...

There's something about yellow flowers that I love. - Margy