This Killdeer brought a bit of drama into my afternoon walk when she suddenly let out a loud shrill and ran frantically in short spurts across the road in front of me and into a freshly planted farm field.  She was obviously trying to lure my attention away from a nest she had hidden in the grass nearby.

“When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout!”  ~Unknown


Noisy Mockingbird

This is the mockingbird that stands guard in our front yard.  He generally positions himself at different posts situated about the area, ready to chase off any intruders who venture into his territory.  Musically, he is an extremely talented bird that likes to sing day and night.  He positions himself in a bush outside our window and performs his varied repertoire of sounds and songs — in a crisp, clear voice — into the early hours of the morning.  Due to his enthusiastic singing, especially during nesting season, I like to keep a pair of ear plugs or a box fan handy — just for those times when my brain yearns for silence.

“When my critics tell me to stop singing, I tell them NAY, NAY, NAY!”  ~Unknown

Black-necked Stilt

I spotted this lovely Black-necked Stilt strutting around on its long, slender pink legs in some wetland not far from the Mississippi River.  It was quite focused on its task of foraging for food.

“I dressed and went for a walk – determined not to return until I took in what Nature had to offer.”  ~Raymond Carver

Going on a safari

While our granddaughter was here visiting during Spring break, we decided to go on an adventure and explore the Tennessee Safari Park, located in Alamo, Tennessee.  According to their website, Hillcrest is a farm that has been owned by the Conley Family since 1858.  A number of crops are still grown there, but presently it is best known for the large collection of animals that they have assembled and are sheltering from around the world.

When you enter the park, you are given the option of purchasing tubs of feed that can be fed to the animals, some rare and endangered, while driving around 3.5 miles of winding farm roads.  Just roll down your window and the animals, which roam freely around the farm, will come to you.  Be ready for up close and personal interaction.

After the driving tour, we parked our car and strolled around the Walk Thru area of the farm.

Our granddaughter really enjoyed seeing and petting the animals, and it was a nice way to spend the day with family.

“Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent and not enough time on what is important.”  ~Stephen Covey


This muskrat was intently feeding upon vegetation on the edge of a flooded farm field near the Mississippi River.  His concentration was so focused upon his task that I was able to take several photos before he realized I was there.  Finally he looked up, spotted me, dove underwater and quickly swam away.

“Courage consists not in blindly overlooking danger, but in seeing it, and conquering it.”  ~Jean Paul

Pearl Crescent


This Pearl crescent butterfly danced with the wind all around the backyard and eventually landed on a wooden board to soak up some afternoon sun.

“Flowers and butterflies drift in color, illuminating spring.”  ~Unknown