The Coronavirus lockdown has now been going on for nearly eight months. We have not seen our children and grandchildren (and great-grandchildren) in more than a year. Of course we have not seen the inside of a restaurant and usually order our groceries online for curbside pickup.
Visits with family have been virtual, as have most of our medical encounters. The only human outsiders who have entered our home this year have been: a plumber, an electrician and a barber (or should I sound uppity and call her a hair stylist or beautician, which of course she is), all masked and so much appreciated.
Our back yard has been another story. Over the years we have hosted crowds of visitors, feathered and furred.
A distinguished visitor was a Wood Stork, twice this past week. This immature bird still has feathers on its head and upper neck, lacking in older birds:
Egyptian Geese have invaded in recent years:
Herons include this Tricolored...
...an adult Little Blue Heron, photographed through the window of the back sliding glass door...
...and an immature Little Blue Heron, far across the lake. Its characteristic bill-down "nearsighted" hunting posture made it easy to spot:
Flocks of Ring-billed Gulls will linger if the fishing is good:
Some Ring-bills flew in before sunrise on December 21
The adult male Ruby-throated Hummingbirds abandon their young to the care of their mates and migrate early. One appeared in November:
An immature male replaced the adult this past week. He has a speckled throat, while that of the female is clear white:
An Osprey swooped low over our back patio:
A Great Blue Heron posed for a moment before flying off:
A Great Egret foraged across the lake:
Our most numerous long-legged wader species has been the White Ibis:
Almost as common are the established feral Muscovy Ducks. We can't fly out, but they they can fly in:
Mama Muscovy rests on our goose decoy:
The goose seems not to mind all these critters riding on his back--
...a Double-crested Cormorant adult, showing off his double "crests:"
...a Mottled Duck hen, whose drake was reluctant to join her:
...Anhingas, recently a youngster, and back in 2014 before our duck decoy "drowned," a spread-winged adult female:
...in 2016, a Spotted Sandpiper:
...and way back in 2012, a Great Blue Heron:
Our only (visible) furry creature this year has been a Gray Squirrel:
The view at sunrise, December 21 from our "wildlife viewing platform:"
Our tabletop Nativity scene. Merry Christmas!
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Fences Around the World
Wordless Wednesday (on Tuesday)
Our World Tuesday
Please visit the links to all these posts to see some excellent photos on display