Tuesday, June 7, 2011

One hundred degrees

For the first time in five years the temperature reached triple digits. I guess 103 was the official high and it was the hottest day in 23 years here in the Saintly City. It was too hot to repeat yesterday's tennis ordeal, and it was too hot for biking, but it was okay for a walk around the lake. It's only 1.6 miles - a distance that I can handle even at 20 below zero.  Happily the humidity was only around 25%, so I took my camera and went for a stroll. The Black Bear Inn is right by the parking lot where I start, and is a friendly air conditioned coffee shop.

Amazingly (or not), there were very few walkers or runners using the trail around the lake. I counted for a while and half way around the count was eight people, including a roller blader. I encountered the neighborhood heron again. He was spooked by my closeness I guess, but I was able to get a decent photo of his flying style.

About the time I got the photo of the heron, I apparently spooked a pair of red wing blackbirds. They screeched at me and made some aggressive moves in my direction. They were agitated.  The male has an orange-red splotch on his wing next to a yellow splotch.

The female was less colorful, but just as wary. I looked around and took several photos of their behavior. They hung around and seemed to be protecting a nest.

After scanning the trees in the area, I noticed the reason for their distress. The new born birds in this nest are very likely closely related to the two birds above.

I continued the walk, not wanting to cause any more stress to the wildlife on such a hot day. Near the end point of my circumnavigation I found mallards again. I know I've posted a lot of mallard photos lately, but I like this one well enough to repeat. The ducks seemed unaffected by the heat and happy to be next to a decent size body of water.

Our heat wave is expected to end tomorrow. It was short but intense. I plan to be smacking tennis balls again tomorrow with the geezers on a mostly comfortable day. Another day in the endless string of present moments.


Retired Professor said...

Ooooh! Excellent wildlife photos. The baby birds were an unexpected bonus.

Santini said...

That's ridiculously hot! Love the bear.