Floating along

An Eastern Amberwing dragonfly floating along atop a dried leaf at Reelfoot Lake.

“Sometimes opportunities float right past your nose.  Work hard, apply yourself, and be ready.  When an opportunity comes you can grab it.”  ~Julie Andrews

Long-horned Bees on black-eyed Susan

On my country road walks in the evenings, I have been seeing these little insects nestled together in the black-eyed Susans.  They are male long-horned bees.  The males have unusually long antenna or “horns” compared to the females, and they sometimes cluster together inside flowers while they sleep.  They are invaluable pollinators of many crops and plants.

“Great works are performed, not by strength, but by perseverance.”  ~Samuel Johnson

Predator or prey?

On one of our recent drives along the Mississippi levee, we came upon what appeared at first to be a tranquil scene.  A colony of great egrets, intermixed with a few graceful geese and a great blue heron, was foraging in the shallow water of a flooded farm field.  We sat and watched the peaceful scene for some time.  Then we spotted it.  Sitting on the far shore of the water was a bald eagle, obviously hoping to intimidate and pick off a weaker bird.  After further observation, we spotted a younger eagle sitting high atop a nearby tree.  It was intently keeping a watchful eye over the adult’s progress and encouraging it on.  What had appeared to be a predator in search of small fish or frogs, also turned out to be the potential prey — a hopeful meal for some hungry eagles.  Such is the drama of nature.

“The art of simplicity is a puzzle of complexity.”  ~Douglas Horton

Red-bellied Woodpecker

This red-bellied woodpecker unexpectedly came racing across the back yard and landed with a plop upon our bird feeder.   I watched as it casually enjoyed a snack of sunflower seeds and then retreated to the top of a pine tree for a little exploration.

“The cream of enjoyment in this life is always impromptu.  The chance walk; the unexpected visit; the unpremeditated journey; the unsought conversation of acquaintance.”  ~Fanny Fern

Tending the babies

There are three baby cardinals in a nest in our crepe myrtle bush.  Both the male and female cardinal are in and out constantly, meeting the demands of their little ones.

“Children are not a distraction from more important work.  They are the most important work.”  ~C. S. Lewis

A drive along the levee

A leisurely drive along the Mississippi levee at this time of the year never disappoints.  One of my favorite sightings this month was several Ruby-throated hummingbirds darting in and out among the red clover.  We sat and watched their playful activity for some time.  No photos, but clear, beautiful images in my mind.

“Memory … is the diary that we all carry around with us.”  ~Oscar Wilde