Sunday, April 3, 2016

Huntley Meadows Park from a visit on Saturday, March 12th, 2016

A few more photos from our last visit.
You can find the Huntley Meadows website here.

I thought you might like to see what one looks like inside, and found the following on line.

As you can see by my first photo, the beavers decided to build their lodge next to the pathway, and have taken over some of it.  We were there a few visits back and the seat had been totally covered, as had more of the path.  Usually the park people let nature take its course, but as this was stopping access and they probably didn't want anyone falling into the water, part of the lodge was removed.  It looked like they had done this very carefully as now the lodge is as well built as ever.  I occasionally sit on the bench and one of these days I am expecting to have company sitting next to me.

The beavers have also built a dam.  We were amazed at how high the water level was, and of course we had snow not so long ago, but the beaver dam has added to its height.  On one side of the dam was full of water, on the other it was much lower.  They are amazing engineers. 

This is where I saw the Hooded Merganser....

and also not too far down was the Wood Duck, that I have shared before.

I never get to see these birds normally so I was very happy at the sighting.  Canada Geese are year long residents and I enjoy them too.  

They always keep a wary eye on us as everyone walks by on the path.

There were nesting pairs here.....

 and a lot of territorial honking going on as this pair came in.  Gregg took the photo of them landing.

The ducks didn't seem to care.

Nor the coots.

Neither did this pair of snakes.  Yes I know, not everybody's cup of tea but they have a part to play in the nature of things.  Are they rat snakes?  Not sure so maybe someone who knows about reptile ID can help out.

There was also a great cacophony of sound and we were amazed to find that it was coming from all these frogs.

You certainly can't tell by these photos, but there were literally hundreds and the water was alive with them jumping all over the place.

Another beaver lodge, surrounded by water this time.  Busy little things aren't they?

Nature is amazing don't you think?  It soothes the soul.

Gregg took the following photo.  He took several today.  You can see me making my way along the path on the right.  I was lollygagging, taking photos of birds.  I wanted to take a good shot of one of the Red-wings singing, and it took the one I was looking at a long time to open its beak, smiling here.  

The following photo is of a mum with her little girl.  Our paths crossed when we were walking by the visitor center on the way back to the car.  The center holds classes for all ages.  They made such a sweet sight.  Not that I intentionally eavesdrop but I heard mum telling her little girl how good she had been, especially as mum had been sick all week, that she was going to give her a special treat when they got back to the car.  That little girl had the sweetest disposition.  I love to see parents out with their children and all this nature must have a calming influence.  I have never seen any child have a temper tantrum on any of our many visits here.  Parents, get your children out into nature.  You can kick me or thank me later.

Well, there was one little boy we passed with a very glum face, and I was thinking he probably didn't want to be here.  I was actually tempted to tell him where to find all the frogs and the snakes, about the beaver lodge and the dam but I didn't want to be that crazy lady, figuring he would find them by himself.  You couldn't really miss them and I bet he'd have a smile on his face when he left the park.  Here's hoping!

About time baby!

Yes, you I'm talking about.

If you haven't seen these before, you'll be seeing them again.  I love these guys!  This one too, and yes I am smiling.

What a great day we had!  I can't wait to get back here again.

I am sharing with the following memes as they become available, with my thanks to all our hosts for bringing them to us.  You can click on their names if you would like to visit other participants.

Anni at Bird D'Pot
Michelle at Nature Notes
Stewart at Wild Bird Wednesday
Jesh at Seasons 
N.C. Sue at 


  1. How I would love to see beavers.
    Not good on snakes, but can admire them from a distance. Love frogs. And ducks. And the Red-wing.
    Thank you.

  2. A beautiful nature post and yes it is very relaxing and enjoyable to watch. Your photos are great. Nice to see greg looking so good.

  3. Wonderful shots of wildlife! I'm fascinated by the beaver lodge as it's only yesterday I came across a similar one down by the lake over here...

  4. wonderful pictures of animals in nature. And so much interessting information. Thanks for posting!
    Happy sunday to you
    susa from germany

  5. I enjoy reading your nature posts, Denise. Our local Canada geese were honking this morning and I lay in bed wondering why. Perhaps they were telling me it was time to get up.

  6. Thank you for this lovely and interesting nature tour through your photos. Amazing beavers, they are born great engineers. I never like reptiles, never my cup of tea!

  7. what a delightful place...I like you frog, the snakes not so much

  8. Wow....all I can say is "Let's go back and do it again"!!! What a marvelous walk/tour of the area Denise. I'm smiling. It's been YEARS since I've seen a beaver dam. Fabulous. And your ducks, geese, mergansers and all...just plain awesome.

    Thanks so much for sharing and posting a link to this post for us birders at I'd Rather B Birdin' this weekend!!

  9. OMw how I love this post... there is so much here that i would love to visit and see. I LOVE THAT FROG and even love the snake pic.. to see a beaver lodge that close and sit by it would be a dream come true and also the dam. i have read about them all my life and never seen a lodge or dam or a beaver for that matter, not even in captivity... love the diving ducks, LOVE the whole post

  10. What a great visit! I love the snakes and the frogs. I recently watched a program about beavers. It's amazing how they can regulate the water level to suit their needs.

  11. Lovely post. A trip into nature is wildly relaxing, especially with snakes out and about. In my neck of the woods (province) there are said to be over 400,000 beavers but I have yet to meet one personally. :)

  12. Good morning, Denise. What a wonderful walk. The Beaver Dam is amazing. I love the Wood ducks and the Hooded Mergansers. I would think the snakes are the Black Rat snake, they seem pretty common. Happy Sunday, enjoy your new week ahead!

  13. What a wonderful visit!
    We tend to find rat snakes in trees, in cedars, facing south. I think they might be water snakes, seeing your locale. /two cents!
    (ツ) from Cottage Country Ontario , ON, Canada!

  14. What a great post and love all the photos. Interested to see the snakes as well but I do not know the snakes in your part of the world. As for the beavers how I would love to be able to watch them. Have a good two weeks with your visitors. Take care Diane

  15. Excellent tour of a very healthy wetland. You didn't miss much. Several webcams have been set up in beaver dams. the beaver usually cover the webcam or muddy the lens so you can't see anything.

  16. What an interesting post with some great photo's and information too.
    I'm with you on encouraging the young to get out and enjoy nature ...

    All the best Jan

  17. I really hate the sight of snakes, but that photo of the mother and daughter and your commentary made me smile.

  18. Beavers are indeed amazing engineers. Your photos are lovely, and so nice to see the Canada Geese, too!

  19. Beavers tend to be most active around sunrise or sunset, so they can be quite elusive for the photographer, perhaps entering their lake at a distant point and then swimming right into their lodge. Also the time of year might be an issue- around here they're very active in October doing repairs to the lodges or the dam, so you have good chances of seeing them through the day. Still, they end up creating a habitat that benefits a host of wildlife.

  20. Wonderful post. Lovely images. Nice to see the inside of a Beaver's home.

  21. They look like rat snakes to me! We have them in our yard (ick!); they are black and get pretty long. I love the frogs.

  22. I agree with you a hundred percent about kids and nature! What a beautiful spot ... For all ages ...d love to visit this meadow.

  23. If I had been there, we could have lolly-gagged together. That sure is the place for it. Loved all these pics...

  24. You're right saying:"Nature is amazing don't you think? It soothes the soul."
    I think that it is such an interesting place to visit and learn new things! What joy to you... To see so many critters, in their habitat... incredible & beautiful.
    Many thanks for sharing with us! Best regards in April!

  25. i enjoyed all the wonder the term "busy beaver"! pretty amazing what all they do isn't it?! i guess it's that time of year to start looking out for snakes! wow, that's a lot of frogs!

  26. Looks like a truly wonderful place to visit. What a marvelous variety of wildlife. Beavers, Hooded Mergansers, Wood Ducks and Canada Geese - does it get any better?

  27. Great and inspiring post Denise!. It's great to get kids out in nature, away from the video games and internet! It keeps them curious and away from being entertainment oriented (me on my soap box!)
    Thank you for linking this great post to SEASONS - greatly appreciated! This is the first week I'm kind of letting the linky's happen (out of necessity, because am trying to get rid of a col!d)
    "See" you soon!

  28. hi Denise! i really enjoyed this! i have always been fascinated with beavers! that bird caught in birdsong is just so lovely! have a beautiful day!

  29. Marvelous photos. I also appreciate you showing us the diagram you found of the inside of the dam.
    Thank you for sharing at

  30. I have enjoyed watching your photos! The work of those beavers is amazing, and the geese are beautiful.

  31. Such a fun outing. - Beavers are indeed amazing creatures.
    Loved all those frogs. Some great bird shots too.

  32. All great images. Enjoy your company

  33. Um trabalho magnifico acompanhado de belas fotografias.
    Um abraço.

  34. Yes nature does sooth the soul and I enjoyed the photos and information Denise..Michelle

  35. Oh it just seems like the most INCREDIBLE day! I love the beaver lodge, and the red-winged blackbirds and the amazing water life! Wonderful photos, and such a perfect place to visit. An awesome series of posts!

  36. Hi Denise, what a super place to visit, what a variety of wildlife in a visit. Thanks for your comment and my access to your blog. Regards John

  37. How did I miss this post? Great photos.


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