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Sunday, 25 January 2015

Funny Birds and Animals

Pretty cold today, -13, especially down by the lake this morning at 8am. We haven't been down much this year, nor last, as no longer living 5 mins from the lake in Whitby kind of makes it a bit of a usage of gas and more than a 20 min drive, in Scarborough where we live now. But, we do go down here and there.

The sunrise over Lake Ontario is often gorgeous, and there are an array of birds and animals we love to watch. We took raw peanuts down this morning for the jays, squirrels, and some smaller wild bird seed for the other birds.

We didn't spot the one animal we hoped to see there today, but the red squirrels and the birds were quite funny today. The red squirrels, though the smaller squirrel, were aggressive enough to scare off the black squirrels, the cardinals, even the jays.

A couple of cute and funny shots from the morning at the lake.

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Scarborough Waterfront Walks Lately

Now that the sun doesn't rise at 5am any more, we've been more eager to actually get up for a sunrise down at the lake. Miss being in Whitby where it was a few minutes walk there but get up the motivation to do the 15 or so minute drive down to the Scarborough waterfront. December 21st was a nice temperature, unlike a couple weekends before, when it was barely withstand-able temperature wise.

We'd never walked west along the beach from the main cathedral bluffs but the long tail ducks were calling to us so we ventured along the shores at the base of the clay cliffs. Love the long tail ducks and I especially love their sound! We noticed quite a few small pebbly pieces rolling down the sides of the bluffs, didn't think much of it as they were small. Though there was a lot of past evidence that rather large chunks had fallen at some point, we weren't too alarmed. There was even a pile as tall as me almost, that had obviously built up from a consistent supply of falling gravel that fell along one path, which was kind of cool to view.

As we got further west, it became slightly more alarming as we saw some rather larger, golf ball sized pieces falling and bouncing off outcropping sections of the bluffs at or just above head level. Decided that was enough, time to turn back now, when one smacked me at the edge of the left side of my glasses, stinging my cheek and making me realize I was lucky my glasses were intact, not to mention my eye too - doh!

The marina would be safer, what can happen there, so we headed over. Sometimes Buffle heads can be seen there though they're timid, and there's always the wide array of mallards, trumpeter swans, gulls, pigeons, and american black duck hybrids. As we approached the marina, walking through the parking lot, I spotted a a rather large dark looking shape in a tree, beeline sight wise for the marina where all the pigeons and ducks hang out. The red tailed hawk perchance? No, a cooper's hawk. Quite the thrilling surprise sighting. The hawk sat there for a bit then flew over to a higher tree at a different angle. It sat up there for a long time, not moving till a group of pigeons flew near and were approaching the beach. It moved fast then and the ducks freaked out, though it was a bit too early to get the pigeons, they took off, never having landed, when they saw the hawk swoop towards them. After that, it flew into the top of a farther tree.

Another creature we had hoped to get a glimpse of is the red fox. No such luck on the real cold morning, nor the mild weekend, but we did spot the little guy through the bushes, far off from where we were, running through the under brush then about 40 mins later, coming back to check out the area and potential food sources near by. He looks to be quite healthy with a very pretty face. One day I hope to get one or 2 good photos of the fox but no matter, it is quite a pleasure just to spot him.