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Scenes of Late November Nature in SE Harford County

Post-Thanksgiving kicks off winter in the mid-Atlantic region. There may be days of brilliant sunshine with clear blue skies; those are to be treasured. More frequently winter brings us dreary, cloudy, chilly days. On those, it’s best to be outdoors to appreciate life and color; rather than just viewing nature during the dash from building to car (though that’s what we really want to do).

Here is what nature looks like in Harford County as November draws to a close:

Nov foliage

Reflections in a stream:

tree reflections

Fallen trees:

fallen trees

Heron poised to gather a meal:

heron

Moonrise is in the mid-afternoon:

moonrise

This pictures were taken during a stroll through Mariner Point Park, in Joppatowne. There are dozens of nests in the trees and shrubs, clearly visible now that the foliage is gone. Here’s one:

nest

Berries, raisins, and seeds – Is this scat? or someone’s trail mix?:

scat maybe

Oriental bittersweet brings cheery bright colors to the landscape; I think these buds are beautiful. But it’s an invasive and can wrap around trees and bring down branches.

Bittersweet_Oriental

A cardinal and a cedar waxwing in this sweetgum tree are practically silhouetted against a dreary November sky.

cardinal & cedar waxwing in sweetgum tree

I could hear a woodpecker drumming in these woods, but couldn’t find him. Later in the day I returned to the park and did find a red-bellied woodpecker.

trees_woodpecker

Other birds seen during a stroll through Mariner Point Park in Joppatowne: many cardinals, cedar waxwings, blue jay, mourning doves, red-winged blackbirds, starlings, many gulls including black-backed gull (not sure which species), titmouse, white-throated sparrow.

Later in the day, seagulls were very active. Here, one takes a rest:

gull2

Other birds during an evening visit included chickadees, titmice, and more cardinals. I also heard owls. To the best of my ID skills using two field guides, I think I heard a great horned owl in the woods as dusk fell, and a short-eared owl in the park’s center grassy area.

At my feeders at home, I have finches, house sparrow, titmice, blue jays, mourning doves, cardinals, and juncos pecking below.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this short tour of November nature in Harford County!

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