Birds of prey seemed to be the theme of this walk. At the oxbow lookout in the stormwater wetlands we saw a juvenile hawk either a red tail or broad winged. In the storm water wetlands we observed two swans that carved out a small patch in the icy water. Later at little pond we saw hooded mergansers, cormorants, a belted kingfisher, and a bald eagle swooping over the water then landing in a tree. On the walk back looking in the trees we saw not one but two great horned owls. This is the first time in years that great horned owls or any owl has been seen at the alewife reservation. It was truly a great walk.
There were a number of incredible animals out today. Walking though the storm water wet lands I saw a Merlin siting in a tree eating a song sparrow, some blue jays came by and harassed the merlin for a little while then they left and the merlin began to eat. Further down at the oxbow there were a number of Canadian geese, some mallards, an american black duck, and a fairly young blue heron, about a year old. At the exit to little river in the storm water wetlands there were four blue herons (three in picture) all are adults and were siting together. On the other side of the river close to the meadow before the north trail there was a red tailed hawk eating a grey squirrel. Later on I saw a coyote walking along little pond, it was fully grown and looked very healthy. Winter usually means a decrease in wildlife sightings yet today there were many more animals than I expected to see. Defiantly one of the best walks I’ve ever had at Alewife.
I was walking at Blair pond on 10/19 and heard some rustling up in a tree. When I looked up I was surprised to find a Groundhog in the tree. It used a tangled mess of bittersweet vines to climb up and eat some plants that it other wise would have had a hard time getting to. It sat on the vines staring at me for around five minutes before it finally left into the forest. Here’s a picture of it:
I was at Alewife on Wednesday 10/19 and I was walking through the meadow at the end of the storm water wetlands and found a ton of different bugs. It was a fairly warm and sunny day so there were a lot of different bugs out like Sweat Bees, Bold Faced Hornets, Honey Bees, Carpenter Bees, Bumble Bees, a few different Stink Bugs, Field Crickets, Red-Legged Grasshoppers, Black Corsair bug, Meadow Hawk Dragonfly, Familiar Bluets, a unknown Ichneumon Wasp, a Sulfur Butterfly, Cabbage Whites, an American Copper butterfly, and even a Monarch!
On August first I found these catfish dead in the fore bay of the storm water wetlands. The catfish were the only thing that were dead, painted turtles, sunfish and green frogs were still living in the fore bay and seemed fine. There were about 15 dead fish, they looked skinny and some had weird lumps on them that looked like tumors. If anyone knows what caused them to die please comment.
Click on image for better clarity
Today there were a lot of animals out. Near acorn park drive there was a family of White Tailed Deer three fawns and a mother, then later on near Little pond there were two different fawns! There were three blue herons out today one at Yates pond, one at Little pond and one on a mud flat along Little river. Also there was a Woodchuck munching on some grass in the meadow along acorn park drive.
Click on picture to see in better resolution