Sunday, June 19, 2016

The Nature of Brooklyn

     Yesterday I took a morning walk in Green-Wood Cemetery and today I walked around Prospect, early, before the crowds arrived. I live very close to both places, so I tend to go there with just what I need, keys, a phone, my camera, and binoculars. So more often than not, I don't take on the look of your typical Brooklynite (whatever that look might be). This weekend I also added my new hiking boots to the mix, to break them in for a future adventure in my future.
     When donning binoculars and looking like you're on safari in and urban park, folks often ask you what you're looking for. A gentleman asked me just that today, "What kind of birds are you looking for today?" I told him anything that comes my way, I was just out to enjoy the morning- but I made sure to mention I also had my eyes peeled for rabbits, turtles, frogs, and butterflies. He replied to me, "Amazing, isn't it, all right here in the middle of Brooklyn!" We bid each other a great rest of the day, and he's absolutely right- the nature here in the middle of Brooklyn always puts a smile on my face, it is amazing!
Enjoy the sights!
A cabbage white feeding on flowers at Green-Wood cemetery. I noticed the cemetery added more beehives-- I would hope they add more native plantings to help the bees out.
A species of skipper butterfly extending its proboscis.
The same, little dainty skipper as above.
One of the many mockingbirds in the cemetery- this one proclaiming its ownership over Hazel Path.
You can always guarantee a decent mockingbird photo in Green-Wood.
T first I thought I was looking at an avian design on a headstone...
Nope-- just two freshly fledged mourning doves! This one was a bit smaller than...
...The other one.
Baby pigeons and doves are the most awkward looking things as babies.
A blue dasher dragonfly suns itself on the Dell Water.
No, you're not seeing double-- the Eastern Amberwing shadow is made lifelike by the amber coloration of their wings.
A large bullfrog in the Dell Water that I could sneak up on to get a decent picture of.
On my walk back, the young doves gathered on Daniel L. Starr's Headstone. 
A silver-spotted skipper atop a quiet Lookout Hill this morning, in Prospect Park. While the bird activity has died down, the insect activity has been on the rise.
An Eastern Cottontail and I engaged in a staring contest to see who would move first. I won.
At the upper pool, while the sun was not in my favor, the activity was-- A mother wood duck and her chick, resting on a rock were visited by another creature.
A red eared slider was looking to come up and bask on the rock. The young duck was not willing to let this happen.
Mom provided back-up, but the turtle was persistent. If there is one thing you should know about turtles, it's that they ALWAYS get their way, or they will die trying.
Wood duck mama does not seem to keen on sharing with the slider.
An odd little line-up.
I feel like that look of the wood duck, is the universal look of "What the ----?!"
One of these things is not like the other things...
In the end, the odd turtle out won.
The upper pool was filled with wood ducks...
A male up front, a female to the right, and two immature males to the left.
A female with an interesting family, one much older chick (right behind her) and the rest are all of the same age, and fairly young.
A bull frog on the lower pool... who probably eats baby wood ducks.
Found a freshly bathed robin, with a slight underbite on the shores across from the boathouse.
Attempting to dry itself?
A grey catbird lit by the reflective waters of the Lullwater.
I really like these guys, they are the get-up in your face, kind of bird, that can still sing a pretty song.
And they have perfected the head-tilt.
One scraggly looking butterfly before heading home!