After my exciting meeting with the Cooper's Hawk on Friday, I went with a friend to a nearby nature park on Ile Bizard the next day. This is a wonderful treasure trove of swamp wildlife! We've seen amazing creatures from the vantage point of a long boardwalk and it is one of my favorite places in the world.
I was pleased to see many, many Turtles sunning themselves. The Tree Swallows were back as well as the Red-winged Blackbirds who, to me, are the true harbingers of spring. Mallards were wending their way through small channels in the reeds and it won't be long before the swamp will be filled with the delightful trills of the Marsh Wrens and the shrill cries of the Black Terns. Also, the loud scolding calls of the Virginia Rails will frustrate us as the birds hide in the tall reeds then suddenly dart into the open and back under cover (almost always too fast for my reflexes on the shutter release button)!
I also saw Muskrats and even Beavers which are a thrill. Then to top off the afternoon's delight, a fellow photographer pointed out where a Barred Owl was perched. I hightailed it over to the area and this very accommodating bird allowed me to approach within a few feet of it even though I was crunching, snapping and crackling over dead leaves and fallen twigs and branches. He was very calm and majestic and at times gave me the most intelligent gaze that makes me understand why people think of owls as wise. There was something very "knowing" in its look.
Another grand day!