moonrise, sunrise and UN-wooded isle

Here are a couple links to articles defending non-native species.  Perhaps we’ve gone overboard when we consider that all non-native species are bad for the environment and must be removed.

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg22129621.400-loving-the-alien-a-defence-of-nonnative-species.html#.VQhFp2bN4Tk

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/07/140724-invasive-species-conservation-biology-extinction-climate-science/

All photos were taken in Hyde Park (Chicago) during the last few weeks.  Habitat destruction at Wooded Isle photos are at the end of this post

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Bohemian waxwing

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Bohemian waxwing

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male and female white-winged scoter

Female red-breasted merganser with a few white-winged scoters

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moonrise over Lake MIchigan

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sunrise over Lake Michigan

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mystery track with 2 inch red ball for scale

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common merganser showing off red foot

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lots of healthy trees cut down

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middle of the wooded isle

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near Osaka Garden

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lots of very old, very big trees were cut down, dogs for scale

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wood chips from all the trees cut down, dog for scale

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Poplar trees cut down from bobolink meadow

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brush cut down, lots of habitat for nesting birds removed

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Young oak tree–all replacement trees are going to be 3 inches wide

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red oshier dogwood taken out too. Don’t know why it was on the hit list, native and not invasive

Winter 2015: Chicago snow birds (ducks who migrate south to spend the winter in balmy Chicago)

All photos taken in Hyde Park (Chicago) during the last few weeks.

Common goldeneye shows off his best courtship move. See more in video below.

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Male common goldeneye in upright position

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female common goldeneye

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White-winged scoters sometimes show up near shore during the winter months. In the video below, watch one bird with a goody (crustacean?) get chased.

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common mergansers

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canvasback duck

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female long-tailed duck

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female red-breasted merganser

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How big are these ducks compared to a herring gull? White-winged scoter (juvenile) at 2:00. Other ducks are scaup.

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How big are these ducks compared to a herring gull? Adult herring gull and first winter herring gull are in the background. Left to right in front: scaup, white-winged scoter, and common goldeneye

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Windy and cold at the lake

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Raccoon prints with keys for scale

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Full moon setting

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tree sparrow

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black-capped chickadee

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white pigeon

 

Winter 2015: Snowy owl, swans and winter ducks

All photos taken in Hyde Park.  Most of them taken at 63rd Street beach or at La Rabida (6501 S Promontory Drive)

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Snowy owl on pier at 63rd Street beach at dusk

Short video of snowy owl:

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sun dog

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male and female common goldeneye

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red-breasted merganser courting display

See some common goldeneyes’ courtship displays in the video below:

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How big is a mute swan?

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A lot bigger than a common goldeneye duck.

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Quite a bit bigger than a Canada Goose

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Swans enjoying the outer harbor (63rd to 66th and Lake Shore Drive) until the geese come back

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The geese are back.

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scaup

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red-headed ducks

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February 1 blizzard

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February 1 blizzard

fox squirrel at 63rd St Beach parking lot

fox squirrel at 63rd St Beach parking lot

 

Polar Vortex Winter!

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coyote on lake near pier at Hayes (63rd) and the lakevideo of coyote on lake:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/01pxssikd6z4uen/RWgoz5ZRU0

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feeders helped our birds survive this winter

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raccon prints in the snow

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sundog

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mute swans

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mute swans

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white-winged scoter (sea duck rarely seen in Chicago)

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white-winged scoter with juvenile goldeneye

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63rd Street and LSD (Hayes Beach) Other things to see if the snowy owl and peregrine falcon aren’t there!

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mute swans in outer harbor

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mute swans with merganser duck for scale

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tree sparrow– rusty cap, eye line, dot on chest

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tree sparrow

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tree sparrow  also has two-tone beak– dark on top, light on bottom

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more than great icicles on pier, ice to watch in the water

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footprints– more on following post, these are from the tree sparrows

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lapland longspur

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lapland longspur

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peregrine falcon

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snow bunting

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snowy owl

snowy owl back on 63rd Street Pier Sunday–we’ll check out the pier on Tuesday’s nature walk

On December 17th, we will meet at 3:30 pm for a Free Guided Nature Walk.  We meet at the east door (Space Center) of the Science and Industry Museum .  We will use a spotting scope to look at the winter ducks in the 59th Street Harbor and the Lake (63rd and Hayes, where we will hopefully spot the owl).  We will then drive over to the Point for the 5 pm moonrise. 
The meters are expensive if you park right by the East entrance. It is cheaper ($1 an hour) if you turn left into the parking lot. Parking is free if once you are in the parking lot, you drive south past the boats, over the stone bridge and park near the tennis courts. Hope to see you there!   FREE EVENT.  For more information go to passitonchicago.com or call 773-913-2030×3.   Children welcome. Check here if rain date is needed and  Call if you can’t find us: 773-913-2030×3.

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Snowy owl and snow bunting seen this morning– we’ll try to see them on the afternoon nature walk

Meet at 3 pm at the East Door (Space Center) of the Science and Industry Museum.Don’t pay to park as we will be driving to the outer harbor (63rd and Hayes) to see the winter ducks and hopefully the snowy owl and snow buntings.

If you don’t have a car, we will carpool to the the outer harbor.

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Beautiful Winter Ducks- see them on next nature walk, December 1 at 3 pm

male hooded merganser

male hooded merganser

not a duck (but a beautiful winter bird we're likely to see on Nature Walk December 1st!)

not a duck, but a beautiful winter bird we’ll probably see on the nature walk, December 1

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Canada Goose — Does the one on the left have a smaller body?  If so,  it could be a Lesser Canada Goose. There is one even smaller called a cackling goose.  It has the same pattern but it’s about the size of a mallard duck.

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male common goldeneye

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male common goldeneye

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male buffleheads with one female bufflehead near sunset

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male and female hooded merganser

male and female common goldeneye

male and female common goldeneye

common goldeneye male doing courtship display

common goldeneye male doing courtship display

common goldeneyes

common goldeneyes

male common goldeneye

male common goldeneye

male common goldeneye

male common goldeneye

male buffleheads

male buffleheads

male bufflehead

male bufflehead

american coot (not a duck)

american coot (not a duck)

scaup

male scaup

female scaup

female scaup

male red-breasted merganser

male red-breasted merganser

female red-breasted merganser

female red-breasted merganser

red-breasted merganser

red-breasted merganser

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female hooded merganser

female hooded merganser