Tag Archives: Nature

Friday, March 17

A Ceiling Fan And Cottontail Morning Coffee Muses

A Ceiling Fan And Cottontail Morning Coffee Muses

It’s a warmish start to the day. Mostly clear with just a few high wispy clouds. Of in the distance someone is mowing. Closer by the birds are supplying their normal chorus. I’m starting to see dragonflies patrolling the backyard and a spider has tried to web the weather station.

Our resident cottontail hopped across half of the yard before hiding under the cars or the shed for the day. Hmmm, we might have more than one… earlier I noted to myself how big and brown the cottontail was. Just now another one hopped to the remnant woods at the back of our place. It seemed smaller and grayer than the one I spotted earlier.

This feels like a perfect summer’s day… Starting out at 70 degrees, sunny, nice breeze, filled with birdsong. Too bad our actual summer days feel nothing like this.

There’s a fairly large moon ghosting in the sky. Pale and blueish as it sets towards the western horizon. A reminder of nights bright with moon glow… if only we had a cloudless night. Alt it takes to cover the night sky with clouds here abouts is a predictable astronomical event. Every time we hear of a meteor shower, a lunar eclipse, a comet in the sky the clouds roll in a shut down the view. As a kid, whenever we visited our grandparents, the thing I recall most is the summer evenings spent on the lawn listening to grandpa tell his tall tales as we watched the stars come out. We all sat in an assorted collection of mismatched lawn chairs hoping for a meteor sighting or, even better a satellite. We were far enough out in the country that there was no light pollution ( I don’t even think the term existed), and the sky was filled with stars. The milky way made a splash of light that stretched across the sky from horizon to horizon. Three generations of family enjoying time together…

Coffee calls….

Birthday Road Trip 2017

My Birthday Road Trip is essentially a photo expedition on or around my birthday of February 6. In a sense, it’s my perverse way of being eccentric… How many people prefer the beach in the middle of winter? And on my way to and from the beach I stop and photograph nature. The first stop, because it’s between me and Surfside, is Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge. The route I took can be seen in this image.

2017 Birthday Road Trip

Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge

I can always find photo subjects just laying around down there…

Alligator in BNWR

Here is a closeup of the little guy…

Alligator cloeup

Those were actually the very first shots of the day. Continuing on the auto tour in the Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge I began to take a number of shots of the water birds hanging out in the shallow ponds.

Surfside Beach

Driving around Oyster Creek on my way to Surfside I caught a couple of shots of a Red-tailed Hawk that I really like…

Red-tailed Hawk and Refineries

Which eventually got me to Surfside Beach…

And… If you click on the images above to see the full sized shots, you’ll see why I like the beach in winter… even a winter that doesn’t feel like one has lots of peace and quiet on the beach… Only one vehicle and a couple walking their dog in both directions. Love it.

Nash Prairie Preserve

I left Surfside and headed over to Quintana, but nothing caught my eye. I headed north on Texas 36 out of Freeport and drove to West Columbia. I grabbed a sandwich and a drink in West Columbia before driving to the Nash Prairie Preserve for lunch sitting in the hatchback watching the wind blow over the prairie.

Nash Prairie Gate

More on the Nash Prairie can be found:

After leaving the Nash Prairie Preserve I stopped on my way to Brazos Bend to photograph a phenomenon I had noticed as I traveled along the river. It was evidence of the high water mark from last years flood. If you look closely at the following shot you can see the color change above the water line…

All along the road, even into Brazos Bend that dark below light above was visible… I don’t know how many times over the years I have seen this section of road go under water.

Brazos Bend State Park

Which gets us to our final stop on the road trip…

And my favorite bench to while away some time enjoying nature.

More Brazos Bend Here:

Tuesday Morning Coffee Muses, January 3

There’s a fine line the winter temperature must walk for this porch to be comfortable with the sun shining brightly. Today’s temperature is flirting with the upper limits of that line. The temperature on the other side of the house is just now moving into the sixties, but here on the south side I’ve had to turn on the ceiling fans… So much for a cold front. The prognosticators are still predicting the thirties before the week is done.

There’s a pillated woodpecker announcing it’s presence in the remnant of woods along the bayou. One of the most primal sounds I have ever heard. Most of the yard appears to be filled with smaller birds though. The number of cheeps and chirps that I hear grows by the day. So, even though it looks more like spring, I guess winter is here for a while.