Friday, April 15, 2011

Look it's a baby! And other things, too

I was back at the Naugatuck State Forest this morning, and the baby Great Horned Owl was up and about, toddling around the big nest all by itself:

Baaaaaby! Such a cute little ball of fluff. :D Look, it even has little baby ear tufts, just like its mommy and daddy:

I'm so glad I happened to find this little family -- what a fun thing to look forward to checking whenever I'm in the woods. :D

Here's one of the Yellow-rumped Warblers I saw flitting around yesterday and today. It's a female, and she's not as bright and flashy as the yellow/black/white males, but she's still pretty. She's got that splash of yellow below her wings, and I think you can just barely see a tiny bit of the yellow on the top of her head and on her butt in this picture (look right behind her wing tips). There were a couple of males around as well, but they weren't about to sit still for a picture.

And speaking of sitting still for pictures, the chipmunks are getting bolder as it gets further into spring. This fellow was not only refusing to run away scared, but was actually yelling at me, presumably telling me to get off of his territory -- not exactly the meek chipmunk behavior I've been seeing up to now. I heard more chipmunks yelling ("squeaking" is probably a more accurate term) in other parts of the forest as well -- I guess it's time to stake claims and stick by them!

I made several other small discoveries today, including this little creature who was hiding under a rock in a stream. I'm guessing this must be some kind of crayfish. (Out of curiosity, I searched for "crayfish in Connecticut" on the internet and found out that we have at least seven species here... who knew!) Whatever it was, this creature was very tiny and appeared to be missing a front claw. I wish it luck and a long crustacean-y life.

Last picture: This is a small flowering Red Maple that was growing at the edge of one of the lakes. I love the bright orange/red color of the blossoms, and I wonder if this is the same species of maple that's showing off its deep red flowers in my yard.(I suspect that it is.)

And the woods continue to be awesome -- no surprise there. :D

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