Friday, June 13, 2014

Grobschmidt Park 3 - Red Neck Picnic

Yesterday I had an impromptu picnic at Grobschmidt park on the way home from the store. A cool front had just passed taking the fairly high humidity with it, so it was about 75 degrees and partly cloudy. Very few mosquitoes or ticks as well, so it was quite pleasant.

Mud Lake - Grobschmidt Park
Mud Lake - Grobschmidt Park
The brush and reeds around the lake are really getting taller now, making access to the water more difficult. I have a feeling that the waterfowl are starting their early summer molt now, spending much of their time hiding in the reeds, so few ducks are to be found anyway. There was a Great Egret out on the island, but that was about it out there.

'The Pier'
The 'pier' is underwater ... simply a plank some fishmen brought out here to help gain access to the water. Other than this, the 'beach' on the other side is the only easy access to the water without getting your feet wet, and the 'beach' isn't much to talk about either. Bad for people, great for wildlife!

View from the 'pier'.

painted turtle laying eggs
Painted Turtle
I ride my bicycle to here, but once here, I try to walk everywhere. Sometimes I ride the trail, but if I do, then I WILL miss things ... such as this midland Painted Turtle laying eggs right next to the path. I noticed a number of similar holes along here and had I not seen this turtle, I wouldn't have known what they were for. So, according to Wikipedia, come August, I'll have to start looking for little ones!

After lunch, I packed up and slowly walked up the trail towards the two marshes to see if I could find any other turtles. Down at marsh level, there is a trickle of water that crosses the path. It runs most of the year, and here's what I saw there.

So, when you're riding your MTB through the woods, splashing through the streams, and you think you're soaking up all this nature ... think again. You're missing more than you think!

Other sightings included a Baltimore Oriole, but few other notable birds. This cool mushroom (looks like a great place to hide in a rainstorm if you're a bug).

Speaking of bugs, here's a yellow Bumble Bee I was able to capture, and I also saw two Monarch Butterflies. First of the year for me, perhaps they just hatched? I dunno.

Lastly, here's a few more wildflowers seen along the way. If you can help identify any, post your comments below!

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