Lily Pads and Dragonflies

We remembered from past visits that Kiser Lake, about an hour and a half drive west of our home in Columbus, had a lot of lily pads. Consistent with our experience in previous years as summer moved from July into August, we found ourselves increasingly enamored with our insect friends, particularly dragonflies and butterflies. What better spot to look for dragonflies than a lake with lots of lily pads!

We had the good fortune to see numerous mating pairs of Halloween Pennant dragonflies and a new to us, Lilypad Forktail damselfly. Other dragonflies were seen, including Blue Dashers, but none felt like posing for a picture. An added treat for the day was seeing the dark morph of an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail.

Along the shore

Our means for getting close the subject would be a canoe. To improve the chances of spotting something of interest we would try to stay right in the middle of the lily pads as we circumnavigated the lake. If you are interested in the route, see: https://www.mappedometer.com/?maproute=917604

Lilypad Forktail Damselfly, (Donna).
Mating pair of Halloween Pennants, (Donna).
Dark morph, Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
Another view, (Donna)

While we were more intent on looking for dragonflies, we were impressed with how many birds were seen. In one area of the lake, we flushed out at least seven Great Blue Herons. Other than in a rookery, that’s perhaps the largest number we had ever seen in close proximity to each other.

Just one of the many Great Blue Herons seen, (Donna).
We also spotted a preening Green Heron.
We caught a brief glimpse of a female Ruby throated Hummingbird as it looked for spiders, (Donna).
There were a number of female Wood Ducks, some with young.
Shoreline logs proved to be a good place for Spotted Sandpipers to forage, (Donna).
In a tree at water’s edge an Eastern Pheobe patently waits for an edible morsel to fly by.
Not far from the phoebe a Red-eyed Vireo searches for insects.
The lake seemed to have at least one resident Bald Eagle
Enough pictures already!

Our three-hour paddle on Kiser Lake had definitely exceeded expectations. In that time, we had observed a world going about its day with no need of us. That’s probably not something that could be said if the tables were turned. But leaving such worrying thoughts aside, we were embraced by a feeling of gratitude for the privilege of an intimate presence in their world for what seemed a too brief moment in time.

Water Lilies

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