Squam 2023

July 9-11

July 14-15

Kayaking 6/15-7/1

The weather has been iffy, with threats of thunderstorms almost daily, but we did get out in our kayaks a few times, mostly in our usual places but also in Molly’s Pond in Vermont.

Tim, Eric and Rick paddling in the smoke at Molly’s Pond 7/1/23

The birds have babies.

Canada geese with goslings. Ompompanoosuc River, 6/22/23
Wood ducks. Connecticut River 6/29/23
Mama merganser splashing to draw our attention away from her chicks. Connecticut River 6/29/23
Merganser family. Connecticut River 6/29/23
Loon with baby chick. Molly’s Pond 7/1/23
Loon chicks swimming towards us. Molly’s Pond 7/1/23
Eagle eyeing the loon’s nest. Molly’s Pond 7/1/23
Immature eagle taking off. North Hartland Lake 6/20/23

We also saw some other birds and animals.

Great blue heron. Mink Brook 6/15/23
Yellow throat. North Hartland Lake 6/20/23
Yellowthroat. North Hartland Lake 6/20/23
Painted turtle. North Hartland Lake 6/20/23
Mink. Connecticut River 6/15/2023
Mink. Connecticut River 6/15/2023

Eshqua Bog 2023

Jane and I made two trips to the Eshqua Bog in Hartland, VT this year: one in early June and the other a few days ago. The bog has many unusual plants, including a couple of types of lady slippers. The yellow ones bloom in early June.

Yellow lady slipper. Eshqua Bog, 6/8/2023

The showy lady slippers bloom in late June.

Showy lady slippers. Eshqua Bog. 6/26/2023
A patch of showy lady slippers. Eshqua Bog. 6/26/2023

We found a white lady slipper among the showy lady slippers, a mutation?

White lady slipper. Eshqua Bog. 6/26/2023

There are other bog flowers present:

Water avens with a bee. Eshqua Bog. 6/8/2023
Butterfly. (Northern Crescent?). Eshqua Bog. 6/25/23

From my kayak 6/1 -6/12

We had a few trips in our kayaks, though the weather didn’t always cooperate.

Jane in the rain. North Hartland Lake. 6/3/23
Taking refuge under the highway bridge. Ompompanoosuc river 6/10/23

We did get a chance to see some birds: some unusual ones, and more of the standbys.

Black legged kittiwake Lake Fairlee 6/12/23
Black legged kittiwake Lake Fairlee 6/12/23
Immature cormorant high in a pine tree, panting. Connecticut River 6/1/23
Merganser. Ompompanoosuc River 6/10/23
Bald eagle. Lake Fairlee 6/12/23

The mallard drakes have gathered together and are molting. The baby mallards are hatching, and have to beware of hungry loons and osprey.

Mallard drake preening. Connecticut River 6/1/23
Young mallard ducklings. Connecticut River 6/6/23
Loon chasing ducklings. Connecticut River 6/6/23
Barn. Ompompanoosuc River 6/10/23

From my kayak 5/26-30

The kayaking season has gotten off to a good start. We’ve been out three days this week, to our regular haunts: The Connecticut River from Wilder, North Hartland Lake and the Ompompanoosuc River in Norwich.

The birds are flying, perching, singing, nesting and taking care of families.

Adult bald eagle. North Hartland Lake. VT. 5/28/23
Red tail hawk. North Hartland Lake. VT. 5/28/23
Immature bald eagle. North Hartland Lake. VT. 5/28/23
Turkey vulture. Ompompanoosuc River, Norwich, VT 5/30/23
Bobolink. Ompompanoosuc River, Norwich, VT 5/30/23
Red winged blackbird. Ompompanoosuc River. Norwich, VT. 5/30/23
great crested flycatcher Connecticut River Lebanon, NH 5/26/23
Canada goose family. Ompompanoosuc River, Norwich, VT 5/30/23

We have also seen a few mammals: Three deer (two on the Connecticut and one on the Pompy) and a muskrat.

Muskrat. Ompompanoosuc River, Norwich, VT 5/30/23
Deer on the tracks. Connecticut River, Norwich, VT 5/26/23