After a rainy day yesterday, with the temperature rising, the day was hazy till about 11. The sun finally came out and the sky turned blue. Before heading for Brightwood Park, a fluffy sparrow greeted me from the bush of winter jasmine. I had to make a stop to take a courtesy picture for the little fellow.
Near the Brightwood parking lot, two northern flickers were courting on a tall tree. It was like a drama on the stage. The way they corresponded to each other reminded me of the piece "Invitation to Dance" by Carl Maria von Weber. I was apparently not the only party watching. A duck got so excited and took off like a rocket to look for a partner.
I was very excited to see turtles appearing in the pond again. They woke up all of a sudden and crawled to the floating logs for a nice sunbath. In some of the pictures I took, there was a photobomb. A small protrusion of a log appeared like the head and face of a turtle, and competed for attention with its light color.
At a closer look, the turtles looked like special forces soldiers wearing helmets and camouflage uniforms and practicing an amphibious landing. A large turtle was climbing to a log, like a tank roaring and was directed by a nearby soldier using sign language.
In the small pond, there was a family of turtles using a car tire as their stage of performance. During the photo session they uniformly lifted their heads. After the session, they self-announced "At ease!" and scattered all over the place.
Every time I take a walk with my friend, Tom, in Brightwood Park, his sharp eyes pick out something cool. Today was no exception. He first spotted a red-tailed hawk on a tree at the junction of the two ponds. Later, the hawk came at us and landed on a tree close by. Like a king, the big bird stood still in a high place waiting for us to gaze and pay our tributes. Tom and I made a circle on the hill to position ourselves for photo shots. We watched and worked as royal photographers for a good 10 minutes or so, and then Tom had to go home. The hawk appeared to be quite patient and seemed to want me to take a few more portrait pictures. Finally the session was done, and His majesty took off. Then I became worried about the three squirrels who were having a good time playing on a nearby tree.
In addition to the hawk pictures, I am sharing with you a few shots of the crocus flowers seen near the south entrance. I was glad to see some of the flowers survived the harsh snowstorm last Saturday. Two additional pictures were taken between the junction of the two ponds and the meadow area. I regarded the tree stump as the cathedral in the sanctuary. In the other picture is a new home being built by a woodpecker.
I hope you enjoy the photos!
After a rainy morning, the sky finally cleared in the afternoon. About an hour before sunset, I took a walk in the park and was greeted by a few mushrooms playing in the water and enjoying a last-minute sunbath on trees. Two excited dogs were enjoying the park. One of the dogs swam across the pond to chase the geese. After completing the mission, the dog returned to its master with an apparent sense of accomplishment.
On my walks in the park today, it seemed that both the birds and the plants have woken up to welcome spring. I particularly like the woodpeckers. They work hard and sing loud when they work. In the afternoon I saw a pileated woodpecker pounding on a dead tree near the entrance. To my surprise the bird did not mind me closing in to take pictures and videotape.
Brightwood Park is on the North end of Prospect Street. Go past Franklin School and look for the entrance on the left.