Sometimes It Takes A Knock On The Head

In central Ohio it’s the time of the year when finding subjects that inspire a photograph can be a bit of a challenge. Contemplating a paddle in November, given a suitable day, usually means we’re thinking more about getting exercise than about the birds or other wildlife we might see. But if we happen upon something interesting, such as migrating waterfowl, so much the better. Such was the case a few days ago on Griggs Reservoir.

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The sun low in the south, water dark, reflections of naked branches.

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One of our favorite coves looks quite different now.

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As we paddled, it wasn’t long before we did spot waterfowl.

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Still pretty far away, as I continue to paddle my wife catches a pair of Wood Ducks.

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As we get closer they don’t hang around, (Donna).

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In a second they were gone, (Donna).

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A solitary Pie-billed Grebe also makes an appearance

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Pie-billed Grebe, not as timid as the Wood Ducks

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Not to be completely upstaged by the “ducks”, two hawks watch as we glide by.

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Red-tailed Hawk, (Donna)

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Coopers Hawk, (Donna)

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xxx

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A few days after our paddle, we wanted to get out of the house and enjoy a little nature before a prediction for cold and rainy weather went into effect. Since we weren’t sure when the rain would arrive we decided to travel the short distance to Griggs Park which borders the reservoir and the Scioto River. It was a cloudy/partly sunny day starting out, but the wind, warning of weather soon to change, was strong. Given the conditions, expectations weren’t high.

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Along the top of the Griggs Reservoir Dam gulls enjoy a warm but windy November day.

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Perhaps a little too windy.

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The good news; even on a windy day there’s something to see.

Orange Mushroom Community 1 best 1 111815 Griggs cp1

Mushroom community, (Donna)

Oyster Mushrooms 1 111115 Griggs solo walk cp1

Oyster Mushrooms, (Donna)

White-breasted Nuthatch 1 best 1 111815 Griggs cp1

White-breasted Nuthatch, (Donna)

Yellow finger-like fungi 1 111115 Griggs solo walk cp1

Recent rains brought out finger-like fungi, (Donna)

Brown and orange shelf fungi 1 111815 Griggs cp1

Shelf fungi, (Donna)

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Eastern Wahoo, perhaps the most colorful thing around.

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But we had a slightly different priority for this particular day’s walk. During a recent trip we had noticed that along the river below the dam a secluded area in the woods had been commandeered for drinking and perhaps other things. A “hideout” had been fashioned out of available limbs and branches. Based on the accumulation of beer cans, other trash, and the existence of old wood furniture, it appeared that the area was being used on a regular basis. Since the surrounding area, while not a formal park space, is used by numerous people, along with their kids, for walking, exploring, birding, fishing, etc., the hideout had the potential to grow into a real problem. So, with the necessary tools and determination, the area was dismantled and the trash removed. Being a natural area in the middle of the city there is no illusion of permanency but at least for a while the “hideout” is gone.

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Reflections along the Scioto River below Griggs Dam.

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But the task was not accomplished before an overhanging branch came into contact with the top of my head. Ouch!!! So the real point to this story is not the remediation of the area but the fact that I’m a bit superstitious. You see, normally when I do a good deed, picking up a discarded soda can here or a fast food wrapper there, I imagine good luck will follow. Perhaps we’ll see an unusual bird or something. With that in mind, after my painful encounter with the branch, and with my head still throbbing, I was hoping for something really spectacular.

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Amazingly enough as we continued south along the river, it wasn’t long before we heard two birds carrying on quite a conversation  .   .   .

a pair of Bald Eagles!

.   .   .   and they appeared to be working on a nest!

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Okay, who’s going to get the next stick?

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I got the last one!

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Are you sure? Seems like I’m doing most of the work!

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So as I finish this post, I’m still excited about the eagles and my head has actually stopped throbbing. It remains to be seen if their efforts at nesting will be successful. While the area around the nest tree isn’t easily accessible, it also isn’t the quietist, and is certainly not remote. But what a treat, and as we often like to say when something of wonder is seen near home, “right within the city limits of Columbus”!

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Thanks for stopping by.

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Taking a break during one of our paddles on Griggs Reservoir, (Donna)

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xxx

12 Comments on “Sometimes It Takes A Knock On The Head

  1. I really liked the eagles conversing! They don’t seem to care very much if humans are frequent visitors to the area around their nests. In Muskegon State Park here in Michigan, one pair built their nest right at the intersection of two of the park’s busiest trails. Hundreds of people walk past the nest daily, most are completely oblivious to the nest above their heads.

  2. Sorry about your head but a good result all the same. Wonderful pictures from the visit to Griggs Park. The nuthatch was my favourite but the second weir picture ran it close.

  3. That was a great day, even with a head bump!
    I can’t tell if it was wood or stone in the photo but I’ve never seen the finger like coral fungi growing out of either. Every time I’ve seen them they grew on soil, so that’s interesting.

  4. A cornucopia of delightful images. I was especially pleased to see the picture of Eastern Wahoo which I found growing in a recently planted woodland here in England and could not identify.

  5. Wow, magnificent yellow/orange fungi. And the eagles on the same day? I have not seen a single eagle in my life (that is, in the wild). Seems like a day full of adventures!

  6. What a fruitful paddle. Fantastic close-ups of the mushrooms and to be rewarded with the pair of eagles makes it a great day.

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