August Nature on Central Ohio’s Reservoirs

Recently we paddled the north end of Alum Creek Reservoir not far from our home in Columbus and then a couple of days later ventured about sixty miles due south to paddle Paint Creek. Given that it’s mid-summer we weren’t real optimistic about what we’d see. That said, one thing we observed which seemed rather counterintuitive given the summer’s midday heat was that the birds were much more active and approachable midday. This is something we’ve become accustomed to when looking for butterflies, dragon and damselflies, but necessary for other creatures. Of course, it is the insect time of year so we were not surprised to see plenty of them but in addition we were fortunate to see birds including immature Kingbirds, Cedar Waxwings, Baltimore Orioles, and hawks.


For those interested in Ospreys, paddling the north end of Alum Creek Reservoir can be very rewarding this time of year. Ospreys and their recently fledged offspring seem to be everywhere.  During our paddle we also had two Bald Eagle siting’s, however, they didn’t hang around for a photograph. Many Green Herons were also seen as we explored the shoreline and numerous coves. With lake levels slightly low exposing shoreline rocks numerous solitary and spotted sandpipers were also seen.


Osprey, north end of Alum creek reservoir, FZ200


Closer look, FZ200



Adult Osprey, FZ200


Taking flight, Donna, FZ200


Flag-tailed Spinyleg, Alum Creek, Donna, FZ200


Paddling up Alum Creek, FZ200


Long-jawed Orbweaver, Alum Creek, Donna, FZ200


One of many Green Herons, this one was strutting it’s stuff, Alum creek, Donna, FZ200


Fall Phlox, Alum Creek, Donna, FZ200


Amberwing, Alum creek, Donna, FZ200


Very young Map turtle, alum Creek, Donna, FZ200



Solitary Sandpiper, Alum Creek, Donna, FZ200


The paddle up Paint Creek is stunning, it’s hard the believe you’re in Ohio. As the day progressed it seemed easier to get close enough to Kingfishers so that the resulting photograph didn’t leave you wondering what kind of bird it was.

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Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200


Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, dark morph, Paint Creek, Canon 3ti 18-135mm lens.

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Spotted Sandpiper, Paint Creek, Canon 60D with Sigma 150-500mm.


Butterflies on scat, Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200


Double-crested Cormorant looking rather mysterious, Paint Creek, Canon 60D with Sigma 150-500mm.


Eastern Amberwing (F), Donna, FZ200

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Male Kingfisher, Paint Creek, Canon 60D with Sigma 150-500mm.

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Female Kingfisher, Paint Creek, Canon 60D with Sigma 150-500mm.


Bob’s big fish (White Bass), Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200.


Spicebush Swallowtail, Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200.


Green Heron tidying up, Paint Creek, Canon 60D with Sigma 150-500mm.


Mushrooms on a log, Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200.


Common Arrowhead, Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200.


One member of Donna’s Hackberry Circus, Paint Creek, Canon 60D with Sigma 150-500mm.


Eastern Tiger Swallowtails puddling, Paint Creek, Donna, FZ200.


After spending time exploring Alum Creek Reservoir and Paint creek we returned to our own “backyard”, Griggs Reservoir and the Scioto River, where we also found things to fascinate.


Summer along the Scioto below Griggs Dam, FZ200.


Sunflower, Griggs Park, FZ200.


Immature Red-bellied Woodpecker, Griggs Park, FZ200.


Meadow Fritillary, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.



Immature Cedar Waxwing, Griggs Park, FZ200.

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Another look.


Banded Tussock Moth Caterpillar, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.


Halberd-leaved Rose-mallow, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.

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The Scioto River below Griggs Dam, another view, FZ200.


One of the very few Buckeyes seen so far this summer, Griggs Park, FZ200.



Carolina Wren, Griggs Park, FZ200.



Black-crowned Night Heron, very early morning, Griggs Reservoir, ZS50.


Pearl Crescent, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.


Robber fly, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.


Monarch, Griggs Park, FZ200.


Zebulon Skipper, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.


One of many Hackberries seen, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.


Horace’s Duskywing, Griggs Park, Donna, FZ200.


Often we find ourselves walking along residential streets on the return leg of an urban hike to Griggs Park. We usually don’t expect to discover anything special but you never know what you’re going to see.


Immature Red-tailed Hawk just outside our kitchen window, FZ200.



Immature Cooper’s Hawk, residential street near our home, FZ200.


We hope you’ve been able to get out and explore and appreciate nature this summer. Thanks for stopping by.



12 Comments on “August Nature on Central Ohio’s Reservoirs

  1. Remarkable photos, with great detail, composition,etc. N ice work. And equally great captions. A beautiful and informative site. M 🙂

  2. Wonderful camera angles. Thanks

    ________________________________ 差出人: Central Ohio Nature 送信日時: 2016年8月9日 21:26 宛先: 件名: [New post] August Nature on Ohio’s Reservoirs

    centralohionature posted: “Recently we paddled the north end of Alum Creek Reservoir not far from our home in Columbus and then a couple of days later ventured about sixty miles due south to paddle Paint Creek. Given that it’s mid-summer we weren’t real optimistic about what we’d s”

  3. Such a funny bird, the Green Heron. I look forward to your postings showing the beauty of our own backyard.

  4. I am surprised that you ever manage to actually paddle anywhere as you must stop an awful lot to capture these great images.

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