So far this spring, we have failed to catch sight of a bluebird. From the reports of local birders, we know they are around, but family obligations have kept us from going very far afield. Still, they were present last year at a nest tree in Jones Meadow Park near our home, and most mornings during the past couple of weeks we have tried to squeeze in even a half hour of birding, there or at another Batavia (Illinois) park, Hawk’s Bluff Park.
While searching for the returning bluebirds, we saw another member of the thrush family that has shown up in good numbers this spring. This dull-backed species lacks the reddish tail of the Hermit Thrush, sports buffy cheeks and a prominent eye ring.
A Swainson’s Thrush posed on the turf, and then took up a perch to peer back at us:
A Warbling Vireo sang its rolling and rollicking, loud and repetitive: “I see the bug, I seize the bug, I squeeze the bug, I eat it:!”
Nearby, a Song Sparrow poured out its (what else?) song:
American Robins, common as they are, make beautiful photographic subjects:
A Chipping Sparrow posed nicely on a fence post:
On the small lake, a pair of Canada Geese guarded their two little ones:
We enjoyed a Mothers Day brunch at Morton Arboretum, and the grandchildren enjoyed watching the Tree Swallows at their nest box:
House Sparrows had commandeered the Purple Martin condominium:
The children are always fascinated by furry creatures, like this Fox Squirrel:
Dandelions abounded on the lawns of the Arboretum, and it was fun to watch the fluffy seeds disperse at the slightest breeze:
Though dressed in their Sunday best for Mother’s Day, the girls enjoyed frolicking in the extensive play area: