Sunday, December 8, 2019

Snow Geese


Last week I picked a cold sunny day to visit the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in Galloway on the New Jersey shore near Atlantic City. Click here for the refuge website. 
Forsythe features an 8-mile drive around freshwater pools and saltwater marsh. At this time of year you can spot interesting winter ducks along the way. And you will spot large flocks of big white birds from a distance. Click the photos to enlarge.
Get closer and you'll see they are snow geese, our winter visitors. You can't miss them; big white birds with black wingtips and pink bills in big noisy groups. 
There are lots and lots of them at Forsythe Refuge right now.
They're flying overhead.
And they are milling about eating the plants, honking and whistling and leaving goose footprints in the mud.
Lots of goose footprints in the mud! The place looks like goose central station.
If you would like to see a lot of snow geese, and take a turn around a lovely salt marsh, now is a good time for Edwin B. Forsythe Refuge.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Ruddy Ducks


I think ruddy ducks might have been the original models for rubber duckies. They are small, plump, rounded, and toy-like. Bigger than robins. Smaller than crows.
This time of year they are non-breeding shades of tan and brown, making you wonder why they are called ruddy. (They get colorful in breeding season.) I've been seeing rafts of a dozen of so winter ruddies on the Delaware River near North Philadelphia for a few weeks.
 
Cute little ducks! Click the photos to enlarge.