Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Bona Dea and other Update

Bona Dea has been a little more active lately due to some rain in the past week. It had been getting pretty dry in the pools. About a week and a half ago there were several American Coot ducks that were congregating along the bank along the highway that runs between Lake Dardanelle and Bona Dea Park. I was able to get a shot of a pair of them that were below where I parked and was swimming away from me. They look like a cross between and duck and a chicken. They are all black with a white chicken, not duck, like beak. They actually look a little odd. Don't tell them I said so. They walk on land like a chicken and eat on land like a chicken. Go figure!!! Last Friday the 1st, Aprils Fools Day, I went to a new city park just down the road from Bona Dea. I was walking down by the water side and saw this very pretty, and unusual for me, wildflower. It is a Virginia Spiderwort-Tradescantia virginiana. It has very pretty blooms and horizontal heavily vained leaves as you can see by the photo. The next day I was out at the city Golf Disc course on the old strip pits north of Bona Dea. The pits were where they mined surface coal for years and can remember has a kid running around there up and down the mounds of coal shale. They have reclaimed the property and made a wonderful park and boatramp with the large pools of water and canals etc. I saw this Northern Flicker woodpecker just hanging around me for some reason. I had my camera and kept trying to photo it but it would move around and then decided to perch right on top of a dead topped out tree. I have enclosed 2 photos of it as one shows a small red patch on the back of the head. This identifies it has a Yellow- shafted variety of the bird. As it has yellow under the wings that can be seen when in flight. The other variety is a Red-shafted variety which shows the red patch on the front of the neck.Last Sunday I went to a local collage women's softball game and was walking on a narrow grassy area between the paved parking lot and the main highway running through the area. I saw a bird on the ground that looked like it was injured as it was laying on the ground sort of flat and had its feathers ruffled and mouth open and hissing at me. Daring me to come near it. I thought it had been ran over and started to walk away and then decided to go back and have another look. That is when I noticed this nest and eggs. The female was guarding her eggs. I did not have my camera but went back later in the day and shot his photo of the nest and eggs and one of the mother who was walking down the road by the parking lot just making a lot of noise. It was a Killdeer. Noticed in the local paper that they were going to do some work on the pumping station at Bona Dea and the last few days showing construction crews working making an addition to it.

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