As it was a positively balmy 24 degrees this afternoon when I got home from work, I thought I'd take a little stroll on the marsh. I got out there a little after 5pm, but there wasn't much sunlight left. The sunset, however, was beautiful; here it is viewed through some teasel:
During the early summer, I saw several Virginia rails and a sora in this little wet area, which is now frozen solid:
I don't know whether they are still out there, as we're just above their northernmost winter range. They probably went south into Maryland or farther, though they could be hiding in those cattails. Who knows? I hope they're warm, wherever they are.
The sun was setting pretty quickly, and the temperature was dropping just as fast.
The full moon is out tonight, low in the eastern sky, which made for some nice photographs:
There were no birds visible out there, though I heard some sharp little tsips and chips coming from the reedy areas in the center of the marsh. I heard some occasional movement in the dry stalks of the plants, but I saw nothing. At one point, I think a little field mouse jumped just ahead of me and into a clump of dry grass, but I didn't relish the idea of seeing him any more clearly than the grayish blur I'd already seen, so I moved on.
No birds on the Long Pond, either, which has a skim of ice on it:
I mentioned in a previous post that I'd seen some ducks coming in for the evening around the time I was out there, and I did see one small flock of mallards fly near the marsh, but they disappeared quickly in the darkening sky. They may have landed on the creek behind the marsh.
By now it was getting pretty dark, so I headed home.