Saturday, April 28, 2012

Amphibian Distractions

In order to irk any readers that may still exist, I will prolong the absence of birds in favor of frogs. My apologies--but amphibians are fascinating enough to merit attention, even if that means skimping on the birds. This sprite is a Spring Peeper. 

Ubiquitous, but sufficiently tiny and cryptically colored to avoid detection, Spring Peepers are always a treat to find. Their piercing cries echo from every corner of the preserve in the spring, but this is only the third or fourth I've actually laid eyes on this season. Finding this guy was a random stroke of fortune--I was kneeling on the forest floor of the preserve, dutifully yanking up garlic mustard plants (all a day in the office), when the peeper, startled, sprang from underneath the canopy of garlic mustard I was tussling with.

Finally, to satiate those who fail to appreciate amphibians, here is a shot of one of the most common birds in the woods at this moment, a Yellow-rumped Warbler. Though my life is dominated by papers and final projects at this point, it seems that nearly every day I see another first of the season--a Palm Warbler, then a Warbling Vireo, then a Spotted Sandpiper. May approaches, and the migrants are pouring northward!