Northern Flickers in Whitby’s Thickson’s Woods

Northern Flicker on a tree in Thicksons Woods in Whitby, Ontario, Canada

Bob and I were on one of our regular visits to Thickson’s Woods Nature Reserve, in Whitby, Ontario, to check out the development of the Great Horned Owl babies.  As we turned to leave, Bob noticed a large woodpecker zipping through the tree tops.  A Northern Flicker landed near the top of a snag. Read more

Glendalough, One Of The Most Beautiful Places In Ireland

wicklow mountains -   glendalough valley

Glendalough --- Wicklow Mountains - Ireland

Bob and I had wanted to visit Ireland and visit the Valley of the two lakes at Glendalough in County Wicklow, Ireland, for many a long year.  So finally, we booked a flight and made for Dublin, and Glendalough.  We were excited about exploring the land of Bob’s ancestors.  The Emerald Isle, as Ireland is fondly called, had me envisioning rolling hills burgeoning with lush green vegetation, and sprawling masses of shamrocks in shady glens. Read more

Driving the backroads of Wicklow In The Shadow of Sugar Loaf Mountain

Jean takes a picture of Sugar Loaf Mountain - - Wicklow - Ireland

green country road - near Oonagh Bridge - Enniskerry - Wicklow - Ireland

After leaving Powerscourt House, our drive became very interesting because Bob and I avoided using the main thoroughfares.  Instead, we took to driving the back roads in County Wicklow in the Shadow of Sugar Loaf Mountain.  We were on a search for adventure.  Bob and I loved the canopy of trees that spanned the carriageway from one side of the road to the other, creating a living, green tunnel.  It was reminiscent of our drives on the country roads in England. Read more

A Baltimore Oriole Enjoys Spring In Whitby’s Thickson’s Woods

A Baltimore Oriole Enjoys Spring In Whitby’s Thickson’s Woods

baltimore oriole looks ahead - thicksons woods - whitby - ontario

On a warm sunny spring day, Bob and I visited Thickson’s Woods Nature Reserve in Whitby, Ontario.  We most often explore the trails of the forest, hoping to find some migrating birds, but on this visit, we opted for a walkabout the meadow adjacent to the woodlot.  What a perfect habitat for the many species of songbirds that we saw that day, amongst them a beautiful Baltimore Oriole. Read more

Great Horned Owl Babies Out Of Their Thickson’s Woods Nest

Great Horned Owl, baby 1, Thicksons Woods, Whitby, Ontario

It had been almost three weeks since Bob and I visited Thickson’s Woods Nature Reserve one spring in Whitby, Ontario.  We were long overdue for monitoring the baby  owls’ next stage of development.  When last at the forest, the Great Horned Owl babies had remained safe in the nest, but on this visit, the nest sat empty.  It took some serious searching in the canopy of pine trees before Bob’s keen eye detected 3 owls perched near the top of one of them…one adult and the two owlets. Read more

Tree swallows at Thickson’s Woods in Whitby

Tree swallows at Thickson’s Woods in Whitby

tree swallow - - - thicksons woods meadow - whitby - ontario

One spring, in the meadow that is part of Thickson’s Woods Land Trust in Whitby, Ontario, many species of birds were making their homes.  The proliferation of long grass, low shrubs, dense thickets, evergreen trees and the remains of an old orchard made it the perfect habitat for many different songbirds.  On our visit, Bob and I saw numerous Tree Swallows. Read more

Brown-headed Cowbirds In Thickson’s Woods

brown headed cow bird -gives me a look - thicksons woods meadow - whitby - ontario

On a visit to the unique woodlot known as Thickson’s Woods Nature Reserve in Whitby, Ontario, we changed things up a bit, and crossed over the adjacent walkway to the protected habitat of the meadow that borders the forest.  With its abundance of long grasses, bushes, shrubs, evergreens, and the remains of an old orchard, it was teeming with birds of all species.  One type of bird that caught my eye were a group of Brown-headed Cowbirds, at rest on a branch right beside the path. Read more

A Broad-winged Hawk near Dorset, Ontario

A Broad-winged Hawk near Dorset, Ontario

Broad-winged hawk on a powerline near Dorset in Ontario, Canada.

As Bob and I were driving along Highway 35 near Dorset, Ontario one spring, I caught a glimpse of an interesting bird sitting on the power line that runs parallel to the road.  At first, we thought we were seeing a Merlin, but the bird turned out to be a Broad-winged Hawk. Read more

Our Tour of Ireland’s Powerscourt House and Gardens

Powerscourt main building at front - Ireland

Powerscourt - view from triton lake - Ireland

After touring the ancient monastic retreat in Glendalough, Bob and I drove up towards Kilmacanogue to visit Powerscourt Estate, the home of Powerscourt House and Gardens  in County Wicklow, Ireland.  The Palladian mansion provides the perfect backdrop for the dramatic gardens and statuary that occupy the property. Read more

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