Today’s photos come from Arthur Williams, whose narrative and IDs are indented. You can enlarge his photos by clicking on them.
Recently I got to spend some time with my brother, on Kentucky Lake, near the Big Sandy River, where the wild raptors were everywhere. The osprey, Pandion haliaetus, were everywhere, diving and squawking for their mates to bring more food to the nest. The bald eagles have returned but were camera shy the day we explored the area.
The bald cypress trees, Taxodium distichum, are especially beautiful: proud, stoic lignin, unfazed by their submersion in the sometimes still water of the once paltry Big Eagle Creek, turned expansive bay by the dam one hundred or so miles downstream.
A stoic great blue heron, Ardea herodias, eyed us suspiciously but held her ground. It is heartwarming to see the cornucopia of wildlife in the place where I spent my youth where there were no osprey, nor eagles and only a smattering of red tailed hawks scattered about.
We came upon a nest of red-shouldered hawks, Buteo lineatus, (I think) and found the chicks waiting for mom to return, hopeful for a late-day snack. Spring is a wonderful season in this part of the country—Tennessee and the area they call the Land Between the Lakes. The flood of memories of my youth came rumbling in on this trip, induced by the smells and sounds of the chop from the propeller from the old outboard motor that propelled us across the water. It was great to be with my brother and share our love of wilderness and hope.