Pond vegetation and reflections.
This pine tree serves as a frequent perch for Bald Eagles as they survey the pond below, looking for a meal. The tree dwarfs the raptor and depending on which branch they choose not easy to spot until they fly.
Some individual birds seem to prefer a quieter location and not being part of the big flock. The front pond had hundreds of wading birds and White Pelicans the day I took these.
Out in a back pond a pair of White Pelicans was joined by a handful of wading birds, all quietly going about their day.
We had a glorious, if not quite right for the middle of winter, weather day today. It was sunny and temps were in the low 70s (21C). I spotted several Cloudless Sulfur butterflies zipping around the swamp this afternoon.
Brightly colored Camellias, which bloom all winter here, were popular feeding spots.
This nearly gone by Jonquil didn’t look like much but the butterfly spent some time working it over.
This dandelion bloom hardly made it through the fallen leaves, making a perfect low spot for the butterfly.
Single flower blossoms are particularly attractive to photograph as fall winds down.
The first image was taken from the street looking though a wrought iron fence.
The second image was taken from the garden inside the fence, looking out towards the street.
November 30, 2019
Hurricane Dorian blew by Charleston at the beginning of September leaving some destruction in its wake.
Some old trees at Magnolia Cemetery could not stand up to the wind this time.
Some that weren’t so old took a fall, too.
September 26, 2019, Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston, SC
Spotting wildlife is often about subtle contrasts and shapes. The subject’s movement sometimes helps. This Sapsucker flew onto the tree then froze in place.
Looking for the unexpected can help.
Some creatures hardly move, like the Tree Frog, and others, like this warbler, are in perpetual motion so it’s helpful to anticipate their next direction.
There was a lot of activity to be seen on a late afternoon boat ride into the Harbor River from Russ Point on Hunting Island, SC even as the day came to an end.
From the beach near the dock a fisherman was casting into the river.
A Bald Eagle watched over the river and surrounding marsh from a dead tree.
A pod of Dolphins was all around us as we set out, probably fishing for the last meal of the day.
Off in the distance it was raining.
The Harbor River is at the southern end of the Ashepoo-Combahee-Edisto (ACE) Basin National Estuarine Research Reserve.
The Reserve’s 99,308 acres of pine and hardwood upland, oyster reef, forested wetland, barrier islands, cypress swamp, and tidal marsh combine to make this one of the largest undeveloped estuaries on the East Coast and home to many endangered species.
This Black Swallowtail Butterfly flitted along on the outside of the plants lining the walkway as I went along the edge of the pond, obscuring my view. Finally he landed in a fern and seemed to peak through the fronds.
He then moved to a more open area and spent some time on this statice type plant.
The plant was down an embankment putting me even with the Butterfly for part of his feeding.
The area just beyond these plants has recently been flooded as part of a plan to make an additional pond near the heron rookery. Next year the vegetation will likely be very different here.
A year ago I captured similar images of butterfly and plant at a different pond about 25 miles (40 Kilometers) from this spot and thought the plant to be Brazilian Vervain (Verbena brasiliensis). Black Swallowtail Butterfly is the post if you’d like to compare.
This Great Blue Heron had just brought food to his chicks in a nearby nest. The adults often leave quickly, presumably to get away from the young squabbling over the meal they have to share or take from the other.
The adult wandered down over the bank into the edge of the pond which is covered with various water weeds that reflected the late afternoon sun.