Ospreys at the River
Saturday 1 April 2023

My adventure today begins at the Rose Garden. No actual roses blooming yet, of course. But the Lenten Roses they have are lovely!

Maroon coloured Lenten Roses

White Lenten Roses with purple edges

Waxy Blue coloured Lenten Roses

Haha, this funny squirrel! Looking pretty precarious on that little twig! And reaching down for the maple keys to eat.

Eastern Fox Squirrel hunched over a stick with maple keys

Daffodil with the river in the background

a blond female Mallard walking in front of a normal coloured male Mallard

Heron statue and Art Pavillion, river and steam plant in the background

Yay! The Ospreys have returned!

A pair of Ospreys up on a platform

Um. Wait a minute. What the heck happened to their nest???!

A pair of Ospreys up on a platform with just a couple of sticks

It's just a couple of sticks! All the nest from last year is Gone!

Looking straight up at the platform with just a couple of sticks

Here's what it looked like last summer...

Looking up at a complete Osprey nest on a platform

(oh! haha! That was the exact blog post in July that I didn't finish last year when I quit blogging!)

But what the heck happened? Did the city remove the nest? WHY?!

Well. Poor Ospreys. Just flew back from Mexico or where ever and now they have to re-build an entire stupid nest!

a pair of Ospreys, just over the top of the platform

Osprey taking off from the platform

Osprey Flying with blue sky background

Oh Cool!
Sunday 2 April 2023

It's been raining all morning, and I didn't expect much excitement for my walk today. Ha!

I assumed this was my half-blind Nutria friend, and was taking photos of her swimming upstream. (oh! She got better and isn't actually half-blind anymore!!!)

a Beaver swimming in the water

And then I looked at her face.

a Beaver swimming in the water

Um. Nutrias have white whiskers. And this face is all different!

And that's a beavers tail!!

a Beaver swimming in the water

*laughs* a Beaver!!! Wow!

For the past... idk, months, 8 or 9 months maybe... the trees have been chewed. A beaver had moved in, but I never expected to meet her/him. Beavers are nocturnal, and I don't go walking at dusk. So it's way cool and unexpected to see this one, out and about at 9:30 in the morning!!

The clouds cleared out and I had another chance at the cherry blossoms.

Cherry Blossoms

So. Trump was indicted this past week.

I am giddy, even tho that twice impeached monster really needs to be brought in for sedition and treason and whatever else it is when a so-called president tries to overturn an election and doesn't uphold the constitution.

damn traitor!

Thing is, those are really real crimes... and I'm not sure what's illegal about paying hush money. I mean, employees sign non-disclosure contracts all the time, right? I don't really understand how this is different from that.

Fortunately, this article explained some of this stuff!

Five key takeaways from the Trump indictment news

The crime of paying hush money to Stormy is actually falsifying business records in the first degree and a felony if it was done to cover up another crime -- in this case, probably the violation of campaign finance laws.

So I guess, it's more like... there's no NDA contract and money isn't usually paid on those, and there's no business record of what the money was actually for...

so hush money is actually a bribe. And then you've got presidential campaign laws on top of that.

It still doesn't feel like a real crime, tho. And even tho Christians (aka christian nationalists and Trump followers in general) are supposed to think that adultery is a sin, they will completely ignore this little criminal issue with Trump in the exact same way they ignored grab em by the pussy.

So let's get some indictments going for some REAL crimes!

Monday 3 April 2023

The sun shines but it's still 9°F colder than usual... 50° when it should be 59°!

Blue sky over the bike path

Red Shoulder Hawk standing on a tree branch

Oh, kitty. You are very beautiful, but your hooman is bad for letting you come outside!

Long haired white and brown tabby, sitting in the mud

Choose Kindness sign surrounded by daffodils

This is the first time I've been to this neighborhood park! I like the mural with a transparent hummingbird...

Mural with a hummingbird

And this is the same Camellia from the other day... I just can't get enough of the pink blooms!

pink Camellia bloom surrounded with dark green leaves

pink Camellia bloom surrounded with dark green leaves and other blooms

birds and Photo Series: Northern Flicker
Tuesday 4 April 2023

So cold today, and I have to resort to more layers than usual, under my rain jacket. Even so, with the wind, I have to walk fast to keep even nominally comfortable.

The newspaper says we are at 172% snow pack up in the hills, which is the highest it's been since 2008. Unfortunately, down in the valley we've not gotten the rain, and our reservoirs are terribly low.

It's also one of the colder springs on record... one of our local tulip farms says this is the latest bloom the farm has seen in more than 40 years and is about a month behind where it was last year. Crazy.

The high today was 49°F and the normal high is 54°. The low is also five degrees colder at 35°F instead of 40°

And I've got another injury to report. This time a male Mallard with a messed up wing. He can't fly, but I'd assume he'll be safe from most predators if he stays in the water.


Golden Crown Sparrow standing on a twig, surrounded by pussy willows

House Finch standing on a twig surrounded by blooming pussy willows

And then this sweet fellow tried to cheer me up! :)

male Northern Flicker standing on the ground

Northern Flicker standing on the path

blurry Northern Flicker bouncing forward

blurry Northern Flicker bouncing forward

blurry Northern Flicker bouncing forward

Northern Flicker looking directly up at the camera

Oh No No No!
Wednesday 5 April 2023

Wes Crusher is hurt!

He's hurt bad. He's limping... ugh, limping doesn't even describe it. He can barely walk. And there might be a nasty abrasion under his right side. A brush with a car maybe? Goddamned cars on our helldamn street.

I don't think he can climb. And that's... a death sentence for a squirrel. And when I saw him again, at the end of my walk, I think he's worse.

He isn't going to last the day.

I am devastated.
*Cries, cries, cries*

Wednesday 5 April 2023

I am upset. But life goes on for everyone else. And I got on with my walk, because what else am I supposed to do.

Love is free? The hell. Love is costly. You pay for it. With grief.

Graffiti on a wood fence, love is free

female Common Merganser on the water

A pair of Common Mergansers at the creek. That's pretty unusual.

male Common Merganser on the water

Oregon Grape blooms

A little Killdeer is running around behind the events center.

Killdeer standing on the muddy ground

several pink Hyacinths

Western Scrub Jay standing on a branch, surrounded by twigs with a seed in her beak

close up of a Western Scrub Jay, surrounded by twigs

a Mink and a Garden
Thursday 6 April 2023

Another dreary day, tho it didn't seem quite as cold as it has been. Sure enough, the high today was 58° and the normal for this time of year is 59°.

Cloud obscuring a hill in the distance

Here's Henrietta Heron, tho about ½ a mile from her usual spot in the creek.

Great Blue Heron standing in the water

Blurry, but Look! We are gathering sticks for the nest!

Crow standing on a stick holding a twig in her beak

Hey! It's Mr Entity Mink! Hello again! (First seen a month ago.)

Mink swimming in the water

Still not paying me the least attention, and again too dreary to get any decent pics. oh well.

a Mink swims by in the creek behind sticks and brush on the bank

Blurry Mink swimming in the water

And way too fast for the camera to do anything, but I keep clicking!

Very blurry mink running along the creek bank

Blurry mink running along the creek bank

Blurry mink running along the creek bank

Blurry mink running along the creek bank

*laughs* Okay. Let's get back to the trip to the Garden!

American Robin standing on a fence

Dead Nettle

Okay. This is what I'm here for! Reducing my little Leek patch, by one, to make some soup!

a row of Leek plants surrounded by leafy mulch

Oh, haha! Look who's sleeping in one of the leeks!

Snail shell in the folds of a leek plant

um, oops! The Sunchoke tubers I had nabbed and tossed under the mulch... have been dug up by squirrels and munched on! haha!

Sunchoke tubers laying on and in dead leaf mulch

And here's the other reason I'm here... a couple of Lesser Celandines, getting established in my left-side neighbor's plot.

Lesser Celandine

This is one of the more aggressive invasives, here and it's important to catch it early. Once it gets established, it grows in mats and kills everything in the area. Major problem, because the above ground plant dies back after spring... and since it's killed all the other plants around, there's just exposed dirt there for most of the year. Very prone to erosion (which, along the creek, can move the small tubers down stream to a new place to murder plants).

So! I'm digging these two plants up.

Um... It's a rule: you are not supposed to mess with other people's garden plots at the Community Garden. But I know my neighbor, and I think she would approve my work today!

When you dig up Lesser Celandine, you cannot throw it in the compost pile... it'll just keep growing. Instead you've got to bag it up and throw it in the trash. sighs.

They don't have trash service at the Community Garden, so I'll carry it and throw it away at home.

Lesser Celandine in a white trash bag, next to an open back pack

Friday 7 April 2023

Grape Hyacinth blooms in the grass

Oh cuteness! Looks like someone gave you some store bought nuts!

Eastern Fox Squirrel standing on a rock with broken nut shells in front of her

I guess I need to resign myself to the fact that I will never get a decent portrait of the cute little Yellow Rump Warblers. It can't be too long before they'll be busy nesting, and I won't see them again. SIGHS.

Yellow Rumped Warbler standing on a twig surrounded by blooming pussy willows

female Mallard standing on a hand railing

River and a Crazy Goose
Saturday 8 April 2023

Such a cool tree at the Rose Garden... it's a 176 year old Cherry Tree. It still blooms every year, but the tree has decided to do that later because it's so chilly this spring!

Massive trunk of a tree

Oh hey! Eugene has recently gotten rental eScooters!

Blue bikes and grey eScooters in a row at a hub

Eugene rolled out the eScooters on mar31 for a one year experiment. We've had the rental bikes for a while now, and I'm happy that we are adding other options!

The eScooters are quite a bit more expensive than the rental bikes. The bikes are 1$ to unlock, and then you get the dollar back if you return the bike to a hub. And then it's 10¢ a minute to ride, which is 6$/hour.

The eScooters are 2$ to unlock, and you only get a dollar back if you return the scooter to a hub. It's 39¢ a minute to ride = which is 23.40$/hour... which is insane!!

In comparison, a day pass for the bus is $3.50.

But people are definitely using the eScooters! I saw a couple people on them today!

pink tree blossoms

The Ospreys aren't here, but the nest rebuild is coming along nicely.

Looking straight up thru a partially built osprey nest

Here they are! They are on their break, and it's so sweet that they are hanging out together.

a pair of Ospreys standing in a snag

I'm going over the bridge to the other side of the river and look down... WHAT THE HECK??!

Canada Goose with eggs on a grassy knoll surrounded by water

There is LITERALLY river water running through her nest!!!

Canada Goose with eggs on a grassy knoll surrounded by water

And it's raining. It's been raining. There is no sign of the rain stopping. And so the river is rising. There is no way... no way... no way! this is going to end well.

Canada Goose with eggs on a grassy knoll surrounded by water

What was she thinking? I can't even imagine.

Canada Goose with eggs on a grassy knoll surrounded by water

Moving on. I enjoy wandering thru Alton Baker park.

wooden bridge going over a canal

Eastern Fox Squirrel sitting on a dead branch

Spotted Towhee standing on the ground surrounded by grass and sticks

The Ospreys at the nest platform across from the Rose Garden!

clouds and far away birds

Sunday 9 April 2023

Great Blue Heron standing on the bank of the creek

The male Mallard with the broken wing is still alive. It's distressing seeing him drag what feathers he has in the water.

He's hanging out near a bridge, and I'm sure the homeless people there have been feeding him. Junk food won't help in the long run, but this guy doesn't really have a long run. So it's a kindness.

Song Sparrow standing on a metal bar

Red Flowering Currant

Stewart Pond
Monday 10 April 2023

Last night I fell asleep, listening to the rain fall.

It's the first night this year, I've been able to open up the window - just a crack! And it was raining and so peaceful and lovely.

I woke up a couple hours later and had to close the window because it was cold.

The cold and the rain of this spring is so extraordinary.

Walking out to Stewart Pond today.

I look carefully at all the ducks to make sure they've got workable wings. There are no females... Off nesting, I suppose. Which will bring new distress since H5N1 bird flu is still active here. sighs.

Three male Mallards paddling on the water

Grey on grey! Those warm greys are lovely, and then set off by the cool greys.

Female House Sparrow standing on a barbed wire

foggy Douglas Firs on the hill

I see Mr Entity Mink again!

But the picture I get is even worse than usual. *laughs* Oh well. Hopefully I'll see him again soon, and have another try!

The Common Merganser pair, still hanging out at the creek. You know what... I think the female is more beautiful with her colours. The black and white of the male is striking, but not lovely!

pair of Common Mergansers on the water

The wet prairie pond is pretty shallow, but still there!

pond surrounded with grasses and trees in the distance

There's some Northern Shovelers hanging out today... but like the Mallards, it's just males. They are winter visitors here, the females must have left for Canada already.

a couple Northern Shovelers wading in the grass

yellow mushrooms growing in the grass

Trillium blooms

A Variety of Birds. And Doom
Tuesday 11 April 2023

Some cool clouds today, but the bit of sun doesn't warm things up much. Today's high was 53°F (12°C) and normal for this time of year is 60° (15.5°C).

Clouds over the bike path

Ruby Crown Kinglet standing on a thorny vine

Ruby Crown Kinglet standing on a branch with orange crown exposed

A new tribute to Blazey Cat, the Bike Path Ambassador, who died 26 January 2023.

Colourful plasic flowers on a fence and a sign with cat photos that says LOVE

House Finch standing on a twig

White Crown Sparrow standing in the grass

White Crown Sparrows are still around. They go up to Canada for the summer... Don't you need to get a move on, little birds?!

White Crown Sparrow standing on a branch

Song Sparrow standing on a twig

And another sick duck. A female Hooded Merganser, again. She paddles upstream, but she's sluggish and her eyes are half closed.

Her companion is worried. And so am I.

2022-2023 Detections of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in Wild Birds

So many birds on that list. So many different species of birds on that list.

We put so much effort into saving the California Condors from extinction... but they are eating the ducks and geese who died of H5N1, and getting sick and dying themselves.


Avian flu vaccine for California condors approved amid fears of extinction

Hidden Trail
Wednesday 12 April 2023

A Western Grey Squirrel walked by... !!! My heart jumped!

But no. It's not Wes Crusher. Obviously not Wes. Wes is dead.

And then another Grey Squirrel walked by, bouncing after the first.

Well. I suppose our niche is open and we have some contenders auditioning.


It's fine. It's just... I'm so depressed about poor Wes.

I decided to go up Hidden Trail today. Mostly because there's hardly ever any wildlife up there. Therefore there's not going to be any injured or sick wildlife to look at and despair over.

Just some nice flowers and plants.

Narcissus blooms

Frilly narcissus blooms

Grape Hyacinths with Daffodils in the background

Daffodils, closed tulips, Hyacinth and Graph Hyacinths

small waterfall

Red Flowering Currant blooms

Trillium blooms

And one earthworm, rescued out of a puddle. At least I can help somebody today.

Earthworm on the ground, surrounded by dead grass and leaves

the Cursing Rant
Thursday 13 April 2023

Goddamn, the fucking FDA needs to step up and defend their stupid science. Gah this pisses me off to no end!

US justice department to appeal to supreme court over abortion pill access DoJ move comes after court ruling that mifepristone can remain available for now but will be subject to significant restrictions

Significant restrictions. Yeah, caving to a pos trump judge. WHY?

Why, why, why why WHY?!

Judges have no authority over the FDA. Why should they? Judges have opinions, the FDA has science... You cannot, absolutely CANNOT mess with the FDA in this manner!

What if someone has an issue about a cancer drug? What if some other stupid fucking judge decides to remove FDA approval for another common drug? Like statins... Huh? How many millions of people in the US take statin? Did mr trump bastard judge think about that? no! of course fucking not.

Because the US is filled with fucking idiots. GAH.

And I do not understand why the FDA is just letting this happen.

Ya know. I thought about cleaning up the rant above... I prefer to keep things under PG here, because kids roam the internets too.

But. I think a cursing rant is warranted here. So I'm gonna keep it!

This is Awesome!
Thursday 13 April 2023

Ladeda-da... Just paddling along...

Female Hooded Merganser in the water

Oh my Gosh! Look what she's looking at! Her partner is Under Water!!! Coming up from a dive to the bottom!

Male Hooded Merganser diving under water

So... this Song Sparrow! He is hilarious!

Song Sparrow standing on the rear view mirrow of a white pickup

Little bird is challenging his reflection in the rear view mirror!!

This is a City of Eugene truck, and the driver/worker patiently watched Mr Song Sparrow with me, as I took photos... so nice of him!

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

And this other reflection over here!!

Song Sparrow looking at reflection in truck window

Song Sparrow flies to perch on the rear view mirrow

One last look...

Song Sparrow standing on rear view mirrow of a white pickup

And we're off...

Song Sparrow flying away from a white pickup

The City employee and I had a good laugh about the funny bird! And I returned to my walk, and he drove away.

Narcissus blooms

And, on the way home, one more awesome encounter... My Friend!

female Anna Hummingbird standing on a twig

Western Scrub Jay

Birds... and a Line!
Friday 14 April 2023

A bit of sun warms us up today. It got to 63°F, just about normal! (which is 60°!)


Great Blue Heron standing in water near the bank of the creek

Oh! Henrietta floofs!

Great Blue Heron floofs her feathers

Great Blue Heron floofs her feathers

And then a second Great Blue Heron flies in and Henrietta is annoyed and drives him away! She's not sharing HER SPOT on the creek, even for a second!

The Yellow Rump Warblers are giving me another chance today.

Yellow Rump Warbler standing on a branch

I wonder what's so interesting in this field that the White Crown Sparrows are here again.

White Crown Sparrows standing in grass

Killdeer standing in a grassy puddle

And the Green Line...

Neighborhood sidewalk with a green line spray painted

I noticed it at the Events Center, where it made a turn to the south. This end is going east, towards downtown.

There was an older lady, puttering out in front of her house. When she saw me walking on the line, she asked, Do you know anything about the green line? Nope.

Did you see where it starts? I explain about the turn at the back of the Events Center.

It shows up every year... she tells me. huh. That's interesting.

I will follow it and see where it goes! I declare.

But, *laughs* it keeps going east and I have to abandon my quest.

white tree blossoms and a blue sky

Yellow Rump Warbler standing on a branch

The above, with a white throat, is the Myrtle subspecies of Yellow Rump Warblers.

The below, with a yellow throat, is the Audubon subspecies.

Yellow Rump Warbler standing on a branch

Supposedly they nest in separate areas... Myrtles in the east and Audubons along the Rocky Mountains. But maybe the humans are mixed up about that! :)

White tree blossoms

River and Ospreys
Saturday 15 April 2023

Saucer Magnolia at the Rose Garden.

Pink Saucer Magnolia blooms

Both Osprey parents at the platform nest across the river... obviously not nesting yet!

a pair of Ospreys standing on a nest

American Robin standing on a branch, surrounded by sticks

pale pink tree blossoms

Downtown Riverfront Art Pavillion and Heron statue, the river in the background

Yay! One of the Osprey parents is here!

Osprey standing in a nest

They fly away, and I check out the nest... Many more sticks! It's looking like a nest!

Looking up thru a platform to see an osprey nest

Oh my gosh! They're coming back with a stick!!

Osprey flying with a stick in their talons

Gots to re-arrange a bit now!

Osprey standing in a nest with a stick in their beak

I walk on, and oh, hey! It's the other Osprey parent!

Osprey standing on a branch

And the busy parent flies by with another stick! Wow!

Osprey flying with a stick in their talons

It is so thrilling that I get to watch all this!
... and be watched! :)

Osprey standing on a branch, looking down at the camera!

Remember the Crazy Canada Goose from last week, who had a nest on a tiny island in the river...

small island of grass in a river

Gone now.

It's continued to rain and the island is even smaller now.

yellow Oregon Grape blooms in front of pink Red Flowering Currant blooms

Todays Birds
Sunday 16 April 2023

Still raining, and still substantial wet prairie puddles!

rain drops in a puddle surrounded with trees and grass

A pair of teals still hanging out at the creek.

a pair of Green Wing Teals standing on the dirt

sighs. yep.

a Yellow Rump Warbler standing on a twig, looking away

sighs. of course.

Golden Crown Sparrow standing on a branch and mostly behind the branch

Killdeer standing in the mud

Okay! Here's someone amazing! A Savannah Sparrow!!

Savannah Sparrow standing on a fence

So cute! They are summer visitors here. And this one is probably all Is this rain? I did not come here for the stupid rain! *laughs*

Savannah Sparrow standing on a fence

Monday 17 April 2023

Even with a bit of sun, we are still 10°F below normal today... the high was 51°F and normal is 61°!


The male Mallard with the broken left wing is still alive, and still paddling up and down the creek. I first discovered him on Apr4. He's managed to keep himself alive for this long, but I really wonder what will become of him.

Of course, I'll never know. I'll just notice that I've not seen him in a while. sighs.

Lesser Goldfinch standing on a twig

European Starling standing on a stick

Yay! A half decent photo of the cute lil Killdeer that has been running around behind the Events Center!

Killdeer standing in grass

And then she just sits down. All that running! Tired! :)

Killdeer sits in the grass

Flowering Quince blooms

Flowers going up Hidden Trail
Tuesday 18 April 2023

It's been ages since I've stopped at the Little Free Pantry in the park! I've brought some menstrual pads with me and I drop them off. I'm kind of annoyed at myself for not doing this in so long.

Open LFP with a couple of items on the shelves


Trillium blooms

Oh, they are lovely! The Fawn Lilies!

Fawn Lilies blooming

Fawn Lily

Red Flowering Currant blooms

Pretty leaves! I think this is Starry False Solomon Seal.

leaves of Starry False Solomons Seal plant on the forest floor

Fawn lilies blooming

Fawn Lilies blooming on the forest floor

And... back to civilization...

Flower bed with daffodils, tulips, hyacinth and grape hyacinth

Yeah. I prefer the wildness and the forest! :)

Just Some Flowers
Wednesday 19 April 2023

Cherry Blossoms

Cherry Blossoms

Cherry Blossoms

Grape Hyacinths in the grass with Dandelions

Birds and Garden
Thursday 20 April 2023

Sprinkling and chilly, the high is 50° and the normal for this time of year is 62°F. Later this afternoon, I'll be seeing my partner to the airport. He's going to Florida to visit his mom.

Henrietta, is that you?

Great Blue Heron behind some grass

Oh cute little bird in the mud.

Golden Crown Sparrow standing on dirt

huh... what do you see??

Golden Crown Sparrow looking into the water

oh Mr Robin? You've got a tail feather out of alignment there dude!

American Robin standing on a fence

Nesting material!! Yay spring!

Western Scrub Jay standing on a branch holding a twig in their beak

And a new Bluebird nesting box at the Community Garden! Are they thinking about it?!

a pair of Western Bluebirds standing on a fence wih a nesting box

Into the garden, and... YIKES!!! This looks pretty... But those yellow flowers are Lesser Celandine!

Lesser Celandine blooms with Dead Nettle

About half of this garden plot is covered with Lesser Celandine Bad! Really bad! It hasn't quite formed the solid mat that will kill everything else, but it's getting there.

The Celandine will die back soon, but will anything else even grow in this plot afterwards?? IDK. And if they ever want to get rid of it, they will have to haul all of the dirt out... it spreads with underground tubers and these tiny bulblets which are impossible to sift out.

Which is why it's SO important to get plants out before they get established... like I did with my neighbor's, the other day.

And here I am at my own garden plot... I've had these row covers out all winter, covering a patch of Fava that I put down as a cover crop to enrich the soil.

Row covers over hidden plants

And I suddenly decide to remove it! And, uh... there's not much fava there! ha. Oh yeah, I forgot! I had initially planted soy beans, not realizing they were a warm weather crop and would not survive the winter like fava does! Live and learn!

a patch of Dead Nettle with a few favas

It's mostly Dead Nettle, which is a fine thing to grow! The little bit of blue is Borage blooms. and Fava on the right. The Fava is blooming as well, so maybe we can get some native bees in here to pollinate stuff! (it's too cold for the European Honey Bees, right now.)

Time to go, but first I check on the Bluebirds at the back of the Comm Garden... Yep, they are still thinking about that new nesting box!!

male Western Bluebird standing on a nesting box

OH! the female just went into the box!

male Western Bluebird looks down into the entrance of a nesting box

Awww! I hope they decide it's a good place!

pair of Western Bluebirds standing on a nesting box and fence

White Crown Sparrow

eScooters parked near the curb

Sighs. First ducklings of the season. There's two newborns, and more peeping with distress down stream, and I don't see Mama Mallard... Is she alive or did H5N1 kill her? How long before avian flu kills these babies?

newborn duckling paddling on the water

well. This is definitely Henrietta! Back at her usual spot.

Great Blue Heron standing in water

Rainy Day
Friday 21 April 2023

Oh my gosh! The Swallows are back! But are there even any bugs flying today in the cold and the rain? I hope they get some breakfast after their long trip from Mexico!!

Swallow flying above foggy trees

You can just barely see the white band across the lower back... that means this is a Violet Green Swallow (rather than a Tree Swallow).

I love walking in the neighborhood and seeing new things. This is a rental bike hub with some of our new eScooters. The eScooters aren't plugged in... I wonder how that works. When do they get charged up?

Bike hub with eScooters

A bit of colour on a dreary day!

Pink Rhododendrons

oh, these are interesting.

White flowers

Spanish Bluebells are blooming!

Spanish Bluebells along a wood fence

Goldfinch standing sideways on a twig looking down

And the ducklings of yesterday did not make a second appearance. Avian flu killed them.

But that male Mallard with the broken wing is STILL alive! I am not getting attached to him. It's just a matter of time before somebody kills him...

River... And the Green Line!
Saturday 22 April 2023

Oh! Forget Me Nots blooming in the Rose Garden!

Forget Me Not blooms

And then, just a bit east of the Rose Garden... it's the beginning of the Green Line! HA!

green line spray painted on sidewalk green line spray painted on sidewalk

This tree is just so pretty. But the blossoms are starting to lose petals already.

pink tree blossoms

Art Pavilion and Heron art in front of the river

And then the Osprey platform nest... um? What's that buzzing noise??

It's a drone! Some jerk is running a drone right here at the Osprey nest... and neither Osprey is here. No sign of them! They've been driven away! ARG!

Osprey nest platform, no Ospreys

Oh my gosh. If I had found the person running the drone... I would have had words! I am Mad!

But I calm myself when I have to walk by a few Canada Geese who are next to the path. No need to upset others!

Canada Goose walking in the grass

And then, HA! I was watching this train come up behind me... and the train driver waved at me as he went by!! :)

Train next to the path

Remember the Crazy Canada Goose? This is her nesting island, even smaller than last week, since the rain has continued!

little island of grass in the river

(That one pale rock in front of the island is pretty distinctive, so I'll probably be looking at that little island every single time I walk over this bridge!) (haha!)

a wave in the river

On the other side of the river, there's a little forest, Whilamut Natural Area, with happy native plants...

Trillium blooms

This funny looking thing is Miner's Lettuce. It's edible, tastes like spinach and a source of Vitamin C.

Miners Lettuce blooming on the forest floor

And, across from the Rose Garden, there's an Osprey parent!

Osprey standing in a platform nest

Oh! And the 176 year old Cherry Tree at the Rose Garden is blooming!!

Cherry Tree blooming

The State of the Blog, and a new squirrel
Sunday 23 April 2023

Today it was misting most of the time during my walk. I don't mind about that. What I do mind is the wind blowing it in my face! Annoying for anyone, right? But when you wear eyeglasses, it's especially vexatious!

But the 100% humidity made this bug very happy!

Roly Poly standing on concrete

Roly Polies are actually crustaceans. And they have gills to breathe, so they can only come out when the humidity is high.

I love them! They are so cute!

The State of the Blog

Okay! I have been working pretty consistently on the blog for a couple months now.

I started archiving 2022 posts in mid-February. I also started writing blog posts again, tho rather half-heartedly! In mid-March, I got better about working on daily entries.

At the end of March, I finished archiving the first half of 2022. (and I had quit blogging for most of the second half of 2022. Sad.)

And at the beginning of this month, I started archiving 2020 blog posts. There was a surprise... I had already archived the first half of the year! (what is it with me and half years???!) And I was very grateful that those files didn't get lost in the Death of the Three Computers fiasco in January! phew!

So I'm going thru the last half of 2020... wow, I did things differently back then! ha. I didn't blog every day, tho it was usually several times a week, including a Wednesday Rant about covid conditions. and I'd only have one or two photos on a post. (good lord, how did I restrain myself?!) ha!

And then I found a few random photos that I never added to any blog posts. That's weird, I wonder what happened. I decided to add them in, when I was done with that archive.

And that's where I am, right now... except, if I'm going to take the time to fix that, I may as well go back and fix some of the xxxs!

Yeah. If you spend any time at all around here, you'll notice the three Xs. It's a marker to myself that I didn't finish what I was doing. XXX is easy to search for.

Who knows what I will discover when I look at those XXXs!!

I mean, the post that's titled New Dragonfly, with no pic and no text seems pretty straight forward, yeah? I just didn't have time to research the new dragonfly, so I didn't know what to name that jpg file. Should be an easy fix!

I'm sure there are plenty of XXXs that have no explanation tho.

It'll be interesting! :)

Oh. And I saw the new Western Grey Squirrel, out my window again this morning. (I am still devastated about Wes Crusher, but it's getting easier to see other Western Grey Squirrels.)

Just the one Grey Squirrel, this time. Pretty sure he's a male... and he's unusually aggressive about the little Eastern Fox Squirrels.

That should be Air Quotes, there, with the aggressive part. Because, even tho the Grey Squirrels are noticeably bigger than the Eastern Fox Squirrels, it's usually the Fox Squirrels who chase the Grey Squirrels away! I don't know why!

But this Western Grey is def chasing the Eastern Fox Squirrels! That kind of puts him in my good graces, tough guy!

If he sticks around, maybe I'll call him Worf. :) In keeping with the ST:TNG theme.

The State of the Typing
Monday 24 April 2023

I never realized how spoiled I was, with the tablet's keyboard. The tablet died in January, and when I eventually got a computer that works, and had to return to normal keyboards... well, it sucks. I have a couple keyboards on hand, and they all suck!

They suck bad.

You have to press the keys SO HARD. and my fingers hurt, all the time. Just terrible.

And I thought that I would just get used to it. I mean, before the tablet, I thought these keyboards were fine! HA!

So it's been over 2.5 months with this situation, since the beginning of February. and my hands are still not used to it. my fingers _still_ hurt all the time. It's annoying and ridiculous!

I keep looking thru the keyboard selections at amz... but I was really intimidated and couldn't figure out how to find what I need. I didn't want to pay hundreds of dollars, and I don't understand exactly what that money buys, you know?

But with all the random googles about keyboard reviews, informations slowly osmosed to me.

A gaming keyboard is the opposite of what I need. Gamers want to know they have clicked a button, so the buttons need some push back, you know. And they need a audible click.

What I need is keyboard buttons that barely move, that take just the softest pressure... like practically NO pressure. The code word for this is apparently Quiet Typing.

I think I found what I need. and now that I've finally decided on a keyboard, I'm SO excited!! *laughs* This thing arrived today, and I am beyond pleased.

Keyboard with backlit keys

Powzan Quiet Wired Keyboard

It's not perfect, but it is so much better.

Plus, the back light is fun to play with. *laughs*

Back to our regularly scheduled blog post...

I saw the new Western Grey Squirrel out my window again, first thing this morning. Worf. But he's cleared out by the time I get my walk organized.

Eastern Fox Squirrel

Clouds and blue sky

pair of Green Wing Teals, in the water

Hey! We're getting some leaves! Even the trees are starting to think it's spring.

Western Scrub Jay standing on a twig, leaves obscuring their face

And why are these guys still here? They nest in Canada! Don't you need to be getting a move on??

Golden Crown Sparrow standing on the ground

Dang it! I have been trying SO HARD to get a decent pic of one of these Yellow Rump Warblers in their spring time wardrobe. But they bounce bounce then fly to the next tree. Too Quick.

blurry Yellow Rump Warbler standing on a twig in the shade

The blue-grey on their back is so beautiful with the black and white. So beautiful. sighs.

blurry Yellow Rump Warbler standing in a bush, looking up

Lawn Daisies and Grape Hyacinths growing in the grass

Western Bluebird standing on a nesting box

Oh, Hey!!

Right to Read Day!
Today marks one year since the American Library Association launched the Unite Against Book Bans campaign.

It's also the day that the ALA released the Top Ten Most Challenged Books of 2022. (There were ties, so there are actually 13 books on the list!)

I am delighted to know I've read five of the 13 books, including all of the top three... Gender Queer, All Boys Aren't Blue and The Bluest Eye.

Unfortunately, I've not reviewed books for years. But here's what I had to say about the other two banned books I read...

Rift Vegan Review of The Perks of Being a Wallflower I gave it 4 out of 5 stars

Rift Vegan Review of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian again, 4 out of 5 stars.

Begin Gardening!
Tuesday 25 April 2023

Okay! I bought Sugar Snap Peas from the Farmers Market weeks ago. They've been languishing in the porch room because it's just too cold and muddy to plant anything yet.

But today is the day!

I mean... it's still muddy and cold. But the peas won't care about that!

It's just that it's getting so late in the season... I usually plant peas and lettuces the first saturday of April, which is when the Farmers Market opens for the year. That was over three weeks ago, and it just feels weird to not be gardening!

pair of Mallards sitting on a debris pile of sticks

Oh! This is really cool to watch! A Lesser Goldfinch tearing up old Dandelion heads! They love to eat Dandelion seeds...

Lesser Goldfinch eating Dandelion seeds

What's interesting is that Dandelions are native in Eurasia. They were probably brought to the US on the Mayflower... but me and the Lessers live on the west coast of America. I wonder how long it took Dandelions to get over here.

But regardless... Did a Lesser Goldfinch, hundreds of years ago, see the first Dandelion here and decide, Hey! That beautiful flower looks good enough to eat! *laughs* Like, did they start eating them right away? :)

Violet blooms

Okay! I finally get going with the Sugar Snap Peas...

Small Pea plants

The baby plants had gotten so tall, reaching for the light in the dark porch room at home, that I accidently broke a couple. foo.

The cans are there to protect them from the slugs... but in reality, this doesn't work. But I do like to pretend that the veggies in the garden will live! ha.

East at the River + Happy Squirrels + Awesome Raptors
Wednesday 26 April 2023

Ha... First photo of Worf, the new Western Grey Squirrel living in the neighborhood...

Western Grey Squirrel running away

Just like Wes Crusher, he's not sticking around for portraits!

At the Rose Garden...

Forget Me Not blooms

Trees blooming in different colours

Ospreys across the river...

a pair of Ospreys standing in a platform nest

Check out this cute one.

Western Grey Squirrel standing on the ground

It's dust bath time!

Western Grey Squirrel lying down

oh my gosh, look at their little hand!

Western Grey Squirrel dragging belly in the dirt

Squirm and drag!

Western Grey Squirrel dragging belly in the dirt

Western Grey Squirrel standing on the ground, squinting eyes

Art Pavillion and Heron Statue in front of the river

And past that, the reason why I came... to check on the Osprey nest. Last time I was here, there was a drone which had harassed the Ospreys away.

But they're back! I saw movement in the nest, but didn't get any actual photo evidence... but I'm pretty sure there's somebody up there.

And the other parent is fishing at the river!

Osprey flying above trees

They are well above the water, but hover and look down.

Osprey hovering in the sky, looking down to hunt

There were so many people on the bridge, watching this one and grinning and saying So Cool! to everyone who passed by!

*laughs* I am absolutely delighted to share nature in this way!!

Osprey flying

The Osprey didn't catch any fish while I was there, tho they did make a few diving attempts.

On the other side of the river I'm in the forest, and this flower is blooming all over the place...

Larkspur blooms

The leaves look a lot like Pacific Waterleaf. But now these flowers remind me a lot of Columbine. I finally just asked google about it.


It's good to learn stuff!

And then... oh my gosh! What a great day!

Bald Eagle standing in a nest

This Bald Eagle nest was actually featured in the newspaper... front page, even! *laughs*

The Owen Cherry Tree in bloom...

Blooming Cherry Tree

Thursday 27 April 2023

Back to the garden today, to plant some lettuce! I've got some starts from my favorite farmer at Saturday Market. And I'm going to plant some seeds as well. Seeds never grow in the garden plot, but it's good to try new things.

Small Lettuce plant in the ground

We've had a bit of a warming trend and it's quite a bit warmer today... 77° when the normal is 64°F. And the bugs are happily running around!

Lady Bug walking on a fava plant, other plants in the background

And I'm happy to see loads of Lady Bugs on my winter cover crop, Favas... They are all Seven Spot Lady Bugs, not native but still a good aphid eating carnivore!

I don't actually care if bugs eat the Fava... it's just there to prevent weeds and I'm not going to eat any Fava beans -- they taste like Lima beans, Yuck!

But if the Fava is attracting Lady Bugs, that is a definite good thing... I will gather seeds when they happen and replant at the end of the summer for another round of Fava winter cover crop!

Bluebirds still thinking about the new nesting box!

male Western Bluebird

This is the Apple Tree, right outside the Community Garden...

Apple Blossoms, just budding out

And here's an Apple Tree that's a little further along...

Apple Blossoms

And the Ornamental Cherry Blossoms are starting their beautiful show!

pink cherry blossoms

pink cherry blossoms

BiteSizeVegan.org Why Smart People Stop Being Vegan

Great video!

And reading the comments, I see one guy is a 20year vegan...



Oh Hey!

This summer I'll be vegan for 20 years too!!!! WooHoo!

Colourful Bloomings and Happy Wildlife
Friday 28 April 2023

Just out for a walk thru the sprinklers!

Crow walking on a short wall in front of a sprinkler and colourful plants

Our warming trend hits a very uncomfortable 87°F today, whereas normal for this time of year is 64°. The wet prairie pond in the city park near my home still has water in it, which is crazy this late in spring... but it won't last long with these temps!

Wet Prairie Pond with trees and grass

oh hey! Is this my half blind Nutria friend? I'm gonna say yes, and she's LOOKING much better! (haha, you see what I did there? Looking! 'cause her eye is better?!) (Dang it, people! When I have to explain the joke, it's not funny any more!) (*laughs*)

Nutria going into the water from some rocks

This one thinks my jokes are lame anyway...

Eastern Fox Squirrel standing on a branch

oh my gosh, the colour!

Red Tulip surrounded by Dandelions and Grape Hyacinths

Yellow Tulip surrounded by Dandelions and Grape Hyacinths

The Killdeers are still behind the Events Center. She's sitting down, but I don't investigate to see if she has eggs there... I don't want to get screamed at! Killdeers have the most obnoxious, ear splitting voice! :)

Killdeer sitting in grass

Apple blossoms and blue sky

Then I sneak into the garden to water the baby Snap Peas and Lettuces I've planted. Poor Lettuces haven't recovered from the shock yet and are all droopy and pathetic looking.

But look at this! Wow, that colour!

Very dark purple Tulips

pink Clover blossoms with Dandelions and Grape Hyacinth

and then I head home.

pink ornamental Cherry blossoms

Steller Jay standing on a wood fence, looking back

And when I get home... Here's Worf! He was busy yelling at a little Eastern Fox Squirrel. But he spared a glance for me. :)

Western Grey Squirrel standing on a branch

Thinking Thoughts
Saturday 29 April 2023

A couple mornings ago, I went out the front door get the newspaper. And there was a youngster Eastern Fox Squirrel bouncing along the sidewalk. First day out of the nest? Maybe.

When she stopped to look at me, I saw she had a bit of a head tilt.


You know what. We are going to call this...
The Year of the Sick and Injured Wildlife.

I just keep encountering them.

Is it because I'm just noticing more? I go out every day and I've got a better handle on normal behavior, so the too-quiet sick one is more obvious to me?

Or are my friends in nature just having an exceptionally bad year?

It worries me that it's the latter.

I went to the Farmers Market this morning and picked up some veggie starts from my favorite farmer... Two Sugar Snap Peas, a Yellow Zucchini and a Patty Pan. Not too much, and there's no time to go to the garden to plant anything.

I drop the plants off at home and then I head out again to pick Partner up from the airport. He was in Florida, visiting his Mom, and now he's glad to be home.

Lots of pics. Lots of ducklings. Just Lots.
Sunday 30 April 2023

Okay. I'm looking over the photos I have gathered for today. There are just so many.

And I feel crazy.

Hi Mama! You think I'm crazy?

Eastern Fox Squirrel standing on the sidewalk with a peanut

Temperature has cooled down again... and today we are featuring an entirely Normal day! Today's high is 65°F and today's normal is 65°F.

I can definitely stand to have a few normal temp days, since we haven't really gotten any this spring... It's mostly way cooler than normal, and then the past week has been way way hotter than normal.

lots of small pink and white blooms

The first of the duckling families today...

Three ducklings following after Mama Mallard

Henrietta comes in for a landing...

Great Blue Heron flying


Great Blue Heron flying

Trees showing some spring colour. Clouds covering a hill in the distance

male Western Bluebird standing on a wood fence

And then I find a dead Goldfinch right in the middle of the path. I pick her up and put her body at the base of a tree, well off the path. It looks like a cat killed her. sighs.

I wish people would keep their kitties inside!

Flowers for the dead.

Anemone blooms

Another family of newborn ducklings.

Mama Mallard with six ducklings in shallow water near the bank

There are Barn Swallows swooping around the area where they had a nest last year!

Barn Swallow standing on a railing

Aww, even the dark, Manky Mallard has children.

Dark female Mallard in the water with a duckling behind her

two ducklings in the water

I would love to watch all of these little guys grow up. Unfortunately, I can't allow myself to consider their futures since they'll be killed by Avian Flu.

Sad sigh.

30 years ago, one decision altered the course of our connected world

Happy Birthday, World Wide Web!!