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The Excitement of Spring - UPDATE May 7, 2022

HerbieHerbie (son of Jewel)

I know it was wrong of me in a way with so much needing to get done, but a day like this comes maybe once a year. Yesterday, Woods Lake was black. The ice was getting thin. By this afternoon, nearly all of it had melted. That meant I had to call the best canoe paddler I know—Donna. One thing that makes her the best is that she does all the paddling as she positions me for the best pictures. Another draw to the water this day was that with the lake melting so fast, the first loon I’ve seen this year landed.

New Beaver Lodge and WRINew Beaver Lodge and WRI WRI Cabin from old beaver lodgeWRI Cabin from old beaver lodge

Donna arrived and we looked for beavers and the loon. We took pictures of all five beaver lodges—from the one built in 1977 to the one built last year. At the new den, we listened for baby beavers but heard nothing. We took a picture of it with the WRI Cabin in the background some 150 feet from the lodge. From the oldest lodge, we took a picture across the lake toward the WRI Cabin where I could see my second floor windows where I’m usually looking the other direction.

LoonCommon Loon

Then it was time to see how close Donna could get us to the loon. She never paddled directly toward it. She angled this way and that edging ever closer for the shot. I like the colors. The blue sky coloring the highlights in the near water and the green conifers on shore coloring the water beyond. The sun glinted nicely on the loon, especially on the iridescent neck band.

Lynn with Camera by Donna RogersLynn with Camera by Donna Rogers

But the day wasn’t done. Toward evening, I saw one of the beavers swimming near the beaver dam and had to get a picture of it. By the time I got in position, the beaver had moved on, but it had done me a favor. It had gotten me in perfect position for a picture I didn’t anticipate—my first view of the year! The picture is of Herbie who many of you saw born to Jewel back in 2012. He looked in fine shape as he used the beaver dam to cross the stream that drains Woods Lake—with his reflection in the calm water, a nice bonus.

Herbie was coming for a visit and I tried to get him on the scale for a spring weight, but it was not to be. Chloe arrived with Lincoln and Charlie Brown and told Herbie it was not the best time for him to come. She sounded like she meant it, so Herbie walked off, probably to return during the night.

Tomorrow I’ll work harder at the computer to make up for this day.

Thank you Donna, Herbie, Loon, and Beaver for making the day what it was; and Thank you all for all you do.

Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center

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