I haven't posted about Chicago for a little while now so I thought it was time I took a stroll around the pond to see what was going on. As with most of the eastern half of the country, we have been having a very odd summer. We had the coldest June on record and the third coldest July (so far) and our rainfall has been a lot higher than normal too. This has meant that a lot of things are occurring later than usual. The fruit on the Mulberry trees is ripening weeks later than it usually does.
We still have very young Wood Ducklings
and some very young Mallard Ducklings too
I hope we have a late fall and winter to go along with our late summer otherwise these little guys are going to have a really tough time at a vital stage in their development.
But at least the female Mallards will not have to worry about being harassed by the males now, they are looking very disheveled as they shed their beautiful breeding plumage
and are transformed into mere shadows of their previously glorious selves.
The females who are done with breeding are enjoying the quiet life and taking the time to relax and preen after all the hard work of raising young.
The various turtle species in the pond are having to make the most of any hours of sunlight, this pair of Red-eared Sliders have hauled themselves up onto a prime basking spot.
And the dragonflies are making the most of warm spots too
You may remember a while back I posted about the local Park Districts rather ham-fisted techniques for removing a beaver from the pond. Well it appears that the beavers of the area are not to be defeated because despite the Park Districts brutal best efforts, we have another tree feller in residence!
The flowers in the prairie are just beginning to gain colour and I was watching large numbers of bumble bees enjoy the copious supplies of nectar and pollen. One of them drew my attention because it looked different. It had longer, black wings that were moving slowly enough that I could actually see them, unlike the bumble bees. It also had a smooth black abdomen unlike the fuzzy abdomen of the bumble bees. Upon closer inspection I realised it was a large Carpenter Bee. Unfortunately I couldn't get close enough to get a good photo but you get the general idea!
A couple of hours after I took these photos, the clouds rolled back in and the rain returned! Hmm, maybe I should move 'out West!!'
Michelle over at Rambling Woods hosts Nature Notes every Thursday, check it out, it's a great meme.
Photo Credits - CJT
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