I couldn’t help but notice the standing water scattered about when I pulled into the parking area by the peninsular. Yay! Prayers answered, I thought. But wait a minute. It couldn’t have been much rain. I live almost directly across the lake from the area, not more than a quarter mile as the crow flies. We had a brief shower, just enough to wet everything down but little more. Still, the puddles were a testament to a good rain, but the true test would be the activity level on the peninsular.
It might not have been much, but it was enough rain, and the word had gone out. The Yellow-Crowned Night Herons were back. Before even reaching the gate, I passed three, one finishing off a crab. (These are smart birds. When a YCNH catches a crab it quickly moves its prize catch to land. Obviously it’s easier for the bird to keep the upper hand (bill) with the crab on land. If it were in the water, the crab would have the upper hand–uh, claw.)
Once inside the peninsula’s gate it was more of the same–many yellow crowns positioned throughout the brush. The rabbits and birds were active, too. The house finches were back – haven’t seen them for a while–and the crows arrived to check out the scene and voice their noisy opinions. I even caught yet another fleeting glimpse of the deer, but the “find” of the day was the little field mouse pictured above. Sitting near the path, the little rodent seemed unconcerned about my presence, though it continued to enjoy the safety afforded it by the foliage.
Oh, and I did get an answer to yesterday’s burning question– the police DO NOT check to see if anyone is still inside when they come to lock the entrance for the evening. I know, because I was nearly locked in. The officer had actually locked the gate, then spotted me walking toward the end of the path. The officer said they lock the gate at dark. Good info to know.
Then on my way back to the car, there were no less than seven YCNHs working the shoreline. It’s pretty awesome what a little water can do.