Spring Wildflowers Along The Darby

Even for Ohio it’s been an unusually fitful spring, with a warm sunny day followed by one that is cool cloudy and blustery with maybe a little rain or light snow thrown in for good measure. On a recent sunny day we decided to check out the wildflowers along a “new to us” trail that is accessed off Gardner Rd. in Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park. We were not disappointed as we walked through a wonderful arboretum of nature’s spring.

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Phlox, Big Darby Creek Metro Park.

The subtle beauty of Large Flowered Bellwort. Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

Toadshade Trillium as a buttercup competes for our interest, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

A Spring Beauty gets pollenated, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, (Donna).

Jacobs Ladder, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, (Donna).

Flowering tree, (Donna).

Large-flower Trillium, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

Large-flowered Bellwort, Big Darby Creek Metro Park.

White Trout Lilies, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

A beautiful example of a Toadshade Trillium, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

A shaft of light illuminates the beauty of a White Trout Lily, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

A Spring Azure visits flowering Phlox, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, (Donna).

Flowering cherry, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, (Donna).

Very blue Spring Beauties, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, (Donna).

Virginia Bluebells were very common, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

Hispid Buttercup, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

Purple Cress, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

Large Flowered Trillium, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

With an open forest canopy this trout lily celebrates the warm spring sun, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, (Donna).

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Even with wildflowers to enchant it’s difficult not to notice other things.

In the midst of their nest building activities Blue Jays are hard to ignore, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

A Chipping Sparrow with it’s beautiful rufus crown catches our eye, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Feathers sparkling in the sun a Starling investigates a nesting cavity, Griggs Reservoir Park.

This time of year along roadside ditches, rivers, and lakes Red-winged Blackbirds are everywhere, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Less noticeable than their male counterpart the female Red-winged Blackbirds have arrived in central Ohio, Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

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They seemed to be getting along just fine .   .   .

Tree Swallows, Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park.

and then .   .   .

Just what they were communicating remains a mystery, (Donna).

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The Yellow-rumped warblers continue to be a common site at Griggs Reservoir Park.

Female Yellow-rumped Warbler, Griggs Reservoir Park.

Kingbird, our first sighting of the year at Griggs Reservoir Park, (Donna).

A Palm Warbler along the shore of Griggs Reservoir.

Another look.

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For nature lovers in central Ohio that have never visited Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park, do so, this quietist of the Columbus metro area metro parks is one of our favorites. In just a few days we’ve seen a noticeable increase in the green of the forest canopy so the days of spring wildflowers are fleeting. In the last few days there have been reports of  an increase of warbler migrants moving though the area so in the near term we will not run out of things to enchant.

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Thanks for stopped by.

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Emergent Buckeye leaves.

Griggs Park Birding, April 28th & 29th

My wife and I were looking at photos and talking about all the birds we’d seen over a period of 24 hours along Griggs Reservoir and the Scioto River just below the dam. These included a first of the year Baltimore Oriole and an Eastern Kingbird.

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As some of you that visit this blog on a regular basis may already realize, we tend to concentrate on several areas close to our home in central Ohio. This is partly to avoid long drives in the car but more importantly it’s a way to visit areas more frequently and become knowledgeable of their unique features and natural rhythms. Of course the drawback with type of focus is that there are many birds we may never personally see.

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Still when you consider that the below photos are representative of what we saw in late April, within the city limits, and don’t include the birds seen but not photographed such as; Red Tailed Hawks, Double Crested Cormorants, Canada Geese, Song Sparrows, Mallard Ducks, Kingfishers, Blue Birds, Downy Woodpeckers, and Ring-billed Gulls, it’s pretty amazing.

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Even if you weren’t looking for birds it’s a great time of the year to be outdoors.

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Griggs Park, early spring.

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But because we were looking for birds it doesn’t take long to spot that previously mentioned Eastern Kingbird in the top of a tree.

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Eastern Kingbird

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Conveniently a Red-bellied Woodpecker was nearby.

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Red-bellied Woodpecker perches beside it’s handiwork.

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The Yellow-rumped was the most common warbler seen.

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Yellow-rumped Warbler.

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Just showing it’s yellow crest.

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Singing, (Donna)

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Palm Warblers were also about.

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Palm Warbler

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Singing, (Donna)

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A Blue Jay lands near by and is impossible to ignore.

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Blue jay

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.   .   .    and a White-breasted Nuthatch also asked to be noticed.

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White-breasted Nuthatch

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.   .   .    and then a beautiful Cardinal.

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Cardinal

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Okay let’s get back to the warblers.

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Pine Warbler, (Donna)

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Take two

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Hey wait those aren’t warblers!

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Turkey Vultures along the reservoir.

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A Starling peers out wondering what is going on.

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Starling

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In the evening we see our first Prothonotary Warbler of the year.

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Prothonotary Warbler along the Scioto River

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Singing, (Donna)

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While I’m looking at the treetops for warblers my wife is looking at the ground and notices flowering Wild Ginger.

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Flowering Wild Ginger, (Donna)

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A closer look at the flower, (Donna).

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A little further down the river a Great Blue Heron strikes a beautiful pose.

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Great Blue Heron

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.   .   .   and in a tree overhanging the river a swallow takes a break.

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Northern Rough-winged Swallow along the Scioto River.

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.   .   .   and then our first Baltimore Oriole of the year.

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Baltimore Oriole

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However, when not seeing it’s more “exotic” cousins we can always count on a Robin to entertain.

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Robin taking a bath in a pool along the river.

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. . . now let’s get the head.

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. . . flap those wings!

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Almost done.

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Even some creature without feathers make an appearance.

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Woodchuck

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Usually found high up in the top of Sycamores, a Yellow-throated Warbler is seen in a bush alone the reservoir.

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Yellow-throated Warbler, (Donna)

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.   .   .   and as if the birds weren’t enough.

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Crab Apple Blossoms

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Thanks for stopping by.

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