Sunday, December 4, 2016

December 4, 2017

December is here, and with it came some December-like weather:  cold and blustery with whitecaps being whisked down the lake by a strong northwest wind. 

But every December is different - compare this year to what 2013 brought us:
Ice in December  2013

This was actually taken on November 30, 2013

That northwest wind blows needles the white pines dropped during the fall (even the evergreens lose a good number of their leaves in the fall) to the edge of the lake where they can get all wrapped up into a tight bundle and then washed up onto shore.  This looked like a small porcupine curled up by beside the lake. 
A tightly wrapped ball of pine needles imitates a porcupine

Turning it over you can see the dense packing of the needles.

The week also brought some warm and wet weather, so the bird feeders came back in the house, but not before a visit from a pretty downy woodpecker.

Downy Woodpecker

Check out those claws, evolved to hang on to bark as they search for food on trees.

They work pretty well on bird feeders also. 

Did you ever think about the fact that birds have tongues?
Probing with the tongue before committing the beak

Duck season runs until December 17 in our region and the sportsmen are still out on the hunt, complete with an eager and attentive hunting dog.

Just twenty minutes after they went by, two hooded mergansers, having eluded them, arrived in the very same spot.
A couple of lucky ducks

There have been a few more ducks around this week, including this pair of common mergansers resting quietly on a rainy day. 
Resting peacefully in the rain

Time for a good stretch after my nap

A very wet squirrel was also out adding to its winter stores.
A good day for ducks, not so much for squirrels

The earlier snow is gone now.  As we await the arrival of winter to be blown in with that northwest wind, we can at least soak up the last colors of fall before they are buried under a blanket of white.


  1. Stumbled upon your blog searching for projected ice in dates. Good work keep it up!

  2. Thanks for the feedback! Lake Wicwas is still open but I'm guessing it will freeze over tomorrow when the wind calms down. Might be a while before it is safe though if we get a good blanket of snow. I'll keep you appraised!