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

Exercising caution

I was able to get some photos of a pair of Dickcissels in the tall grass along the Mississippi levee. The female was quite the poser, but the male was more cautious and tended to stay hidden among the grass.  These “sparrow-like birds” can be found in our area from early May to August.

“Thus hand in hand through life we’ll go;
Its checker’d paths of joy and woe
With cautious steps we ‘ll tread.”
―Nathaniel Cotton

Sandpipers

While driving along the Mississippi levee, in the distance I spotted a small flock of birds that were flying in a formation that looked like a light brown cloud.  They were not ones that I normally see in the area, so I wondered what they were.  Later, as we were driving along a road next to a flooded farm field, we spotted this little flock of birds, which explained what I had seen earlier.  I believe these are Pectoral Sandpipers.  They are common spring migrants in Tennessee from early March to mid-May.

“Live your life as an exclamation rather than an explanation.”  ~Isaac Newton

The Great Egret and the frog

 

This Great Egret, wading around in the shallow water, had just caught a frog as I happened upon the scene. Not bothered by my presence, he continued to enjoy his tasty treat.

“If you have to swallow a frog, don’t stare at it too long.”  ~Mark Twain