Where Has My Lake Gone?

Early in 2012 my neighbors cleared all the trees and brush out of the back of their lot, and don’t seem to mind much if I tramp through it to get to the lake in my neighborhood. Prior to that I had never really gotten too close to it.  Then I started to go back there quite often, until portraits took off when the weather got warmer. I’d sit back there, watching the birds. I found all kinds of birds I hadn’t seen before–Cedar Waxwing, Sharp-shinned Hawks (up close), Pileated Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Great Blue Heron, Swans, Geese, Belted Kingfisher … and the regulars of chickadees, robins, cardinals and blue jays. I was getting pretty good at distinguishing the noises they make, especially the Belted Kingfisher. I loved it.

I didn’t get back there this winter because of the ankle surgery (quite a bummer)! About 3 weeks ago we had an emergency communications phone call saying the neighborhood noticed significant corrosion on the pipe by the dam and the whole thing was in jeopardy. They would need to  drain the lake immediately by 10 feet at least to be able to fix the pipe and keep the road and those in the flood plain safe–or the whole dam may give. We weren’t too worried because our house sits up on a hill quite a bit…but when they’re draining water you just never know.

So, the weather is near 60 degrees today and my ankle is mostly OK (turns out not great when walking on uneven ground…didn’t think of that when we walked out there) and I decided I better get a photo of the former lake. It’s sad. I didn’t see dead fish or anything but you could walk out into what was once the lake. I haven’t heard if they’ll put the water back once the repairs are made but I really, really hope so. Then, perhaps, next winter I can get out there and discover even more fun wildlife to photograph! There was little in the way of birds out there, including the usuals today!

Here are a few shots from today, but also some from last year–to give you an idea of what it should be!

Taken Nov. 24, 2011

Taken Nov. 24, 2011

Same area taken Feb. 24, 2013

Same area taken Feb. 24, 2013

Taken Feb. 5, 2012

Taken Feb. 5, 2012

Same location taken Feb. 24, 2013

Same location taken Feb. 24, 2013

Belted Kingfisher taken on Jan. 8, 2012

Belted Kingfisher taken on Jan. 8, 2012

Same location photographed Feb. 24, 2013

Same location photographed Feb. 24, 2013

Poor geese!

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