Sunday, September 28, 2008

So--What is It?

This is the reverse side of a Morning Glory--but you knew that! It is climbing the Treasure Island bell pole. These blooms are coming into their own now--after struggling through the cool, dry summer.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Raccoon's Return

We picked up a couple more raccoons over the last few days. A real mystery here--are these returning raccoons, or are they newcomers? You normally pick up on their presence by the presence of their scat (poop to the uninitiated). However, this time around it was the trilling of their night call. Most people probably mistake this sound for that of a bird. We caught the young raccoon first, and the calls of the mother were very sad. Now mother and child are re-united on the mainland.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Sunrise on Treasure Island

I have to confess I see a whole lot more sunsets than sunrises. Here are some recent sunrises--a little easier to catch now that the days are shorter.

Friday, September 19, 2008

California Nights

We are experiencing nights like we have in the San Francisco area in summertime. The cool weather comes in with the dusk--time for a sweater or a jacket now, but with the crystal clear air--who's complaining! While the evenings in California are courtesy of the fog--we have the shorter days to thank in Indiana. It's still sunny and warm in the day time--here's to many more weeks of the status quo!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

After Labor Day

The lake has a new rhythm now--no more wild rides on every conceivable water contraption; no more is the lake witness to crowds and craziness--now a peace descends that is palpable. The lake is now a retreat for those who hunger for the silence and solitude of calm waters. Treasure Island stands quiet watch as a new season begins.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Trouble in Paradise

For the first time--I need to illustrate this tale with photos from the Internet. There is no way my peanut camera can reach high enough into the trees.

We have had a summer free of predators, thanks to the early live trapping, and it has made the island bird heaven. Particularly grateful were the Cedar Waxwings, who grew from a small nesting family to a flock of nearly fifty birds through the summer. They are amazing in their behavior--as they are almost completely noiseless. They stay high in the trees, presumably feeding on insects, as there are no berries up there, and I can see their wings flapping, but without a sound. They make no calls either, but perform as ghosts in the tree tops every morning for us around breakfast. After that, where they go is a mystery.

On this day, however, the morning was marred by the presence of the dean of predators--a Red Shouldered Hawk. He also works high in the tree tops, and he changed the equation on this island paradise forever. His first pass took out a Cedar Waxwing, with feathers all over the side yard as proof. After that, he began diving on the ducks, which give you an idea of his massive size. And so, as I write this, we are an island without ducks and without Cedar Waxwings.

The squirrels took this all in from some hidden observation post. They were gone for an hour or two, and are now back.

The equation of nature never seems balanced on this island--the pendulum swings from too many predators to too much prey--what will be the next chapter?