(May 31 - June 3/05)

IT'S THAT TIME AGAIN! It's so much fun to see the new generation arriving. Maybe it gives us hope that the cycle of life will continue for at least another year. I only have to look outside to see a yardful of young hummers, robins, and juncos.

BOOK NEWS - The final proof of my book was completed on May 31 and the book should be in my hands around June 22. Just a reminder that the book is set to retail at $34.95 but if you order before June 15, the pre-publication price is $25 (plus handling & shipping). Sales have been brisk with the furthest sale in Australia.

BACK YARD (Jun. 1/05)

It's always a joy to welcome the next generation to the world. I don't know how many there are, but the yard is buzzing. I know I had at least 10 females ... and then there was Harry. Would all the young ones have his DNA?

Meet Litle Harry. He's a chip off the old block as they say. He's already mastered the art of "King of the feeder" just like Harry. Maybe that's Harry's cue to leave town?

PROUD MOMMY - It's wonderful to sit back, relax, and enjoy the young ones after another successful season of reproduction.

Besides the Hummers, there's also a bunch of juvie Juncos flitting about. Most seem to be cautious about strangers with cameras, but sometimes they forget when they're busy eating.

SNEAK PEEK #1 - Unlike those who can coax the Townsend Warbler down to their feet, the best I've done is halfway down the tree. (What's your secret, Rhees?)

RIVER'S EDGE (Jun. 2/05)

There seemed to be Cedar Waxwings everywhere I went including River's Edge. They were hanging around the nature trail. Maybe they plan to nest there.

Of course, I had to stop and visit the Spotties. One pair was wandering through the daisies. I followed them but couldn't find a nest.

SNEAK PEEK #2 - I waited for 30 minutes at River's Edge for the McGillivray's Warbler to come down, but it preferred to sing high on the tree.

ENGLISHMAN RIVER (Jun. 3/05)- With the promise of a few sunny breaks, I decided to check out San Malo on the way to town. There were only a few Killdeer and crows on the mud flats. I was just about to drive off when my intuition begged me to take a look up the Englishman River for a Common Merganser family. Am I ever glad I did. Momma Merganser was there with 10 of the cutest red-headed ducklings. When I got home, I checked my notes from last year. It was exactly the same date last year when I met Mrs. Merganser with her 18 ducklings! I wonder if it was the same Merganser?

Unlike Mallard ducklings, the Mergansers stayed in a tight group with Mommy.

Everybody likes to ride on Mommy's back. It would be a sight to see all 10 sitting on her.

BUTTERTUBS MARSH (Jun. 3/05)- Somehow I always figured that morning was the best time to visit Buttertubs, but since we were in the vicinity, why not? Again, I was glad we did. We didn't find anything new, but still had an enjoyable time.

Mrs. Mallard at Buttertubs was quite proud of her little ducklings too. She had 7 in her family.

SHY GUY - That's as far out of the bush little juvie Yellowthroat dared to come.

PROUD PAPA - Papa Yellowthroat didn't mind entertaining me while junior retreated to the safety of the underbrush.

Maybe there's more Black-headed Grosbeaks around than I thought. I saw one in my yard a few days ago and now at Buttertubs.

Yellow Warblers are always a pleasure to see, although they seem to prefer to be heard and not seen.

128 pages, full colour, hard cover coffee table book. Anticipated publication date: June 22/05 - email me for pre-publication special price


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