At one point, though, I think I might have heard a Common Snipe, but there were so many RWBLs all around, and all of them were being very vocal and telling me to leave their area right now!, that it was hard to tell what all I was hearing. I also heard what sounded like a baby’s “waaah,” coming from a densely brushy area (damn that purple loosestrife!). I couldn’t see what was making the noise. This morning, I went to What Bird? and listened to the sounds made by all the likely marsh birds I could think of (Virginia Rail, Sora, Snipe, Woodcock) just to make absolutely sure, but I didn’t hear anything like the waaah noise. Any guesses?
I did, however, see a real cat on the marsh:
He was stalking around toward the Long Pond when he saw me and then just sat there, staring at me, while I stared back at him. And just look at those evil eyes, staring at me and burning into my soul! Right after I took this photo, he decided he’d had enough and ran the other way. I’ve never seen this kitteh anywhere around the marsh before; I wonder where he came from.
I also heard (drumroll please) SPRING PEEPERS! Now I know it’s spring! They started up by the time I got back home.
Some other things I saw:
Mr. Cardinal, calling for Mrs. Cardinal. Loudly.
This may well be the best picture I've ever taken of a RWBL:I lightened this up a bit so that you could see that this RWBL is doing his “oh-ka-lee” (or as Earl Cootie would say, his “Jim Cav-ieeeeee-zel!”) thing here.
These two muskrats were doing some sort of mating ritual where they swam in unison, like a pair of ice skaters, always about a foot apart, all around the Long Pond:
“Looks like muskrat luhuhuh-uh-uv!”
This was right around the time those two crazy ducks buzzed me, and I figured it was time to leave! The rest of the pics were taken on the walk back to my house.
Another RWBL, in the sunset (red wings in the sunset, way out on the sea...):
Some rather strange scat here; you can see it’s almost like a bunch of really black grapes, pressed together in a big lump. It was probably two inches across. Any guesses?
One bunny’s very bad day:I thought I’d found an owl pellet right next to this, but I think it was just some old cat poo. Dangit... and gross.
This egg has been here since the last time I was on the marsh (3/9/08 – I forgot to report it here), and since then it’s snowed and been really cold: It’s right near my garden, just on the marsh side of the fence. It’s about the size of a chicken egg, and it doesn’t look like anything’s been brooding on it. Why is it here? What bird would lay an egg under the grass like this and then just leave it? We don’t have any chickens anywhere around the marsh, but it’s perfectly white and chicken-sized. Maybe it’s some other animal’s egg? (Platypus???) I didn’t touch it, just in case maybe someone has been tending it, but it’s a mystery egg for now.