Kip’s Comments 3-11-18

Mink at Sweet Marsh - Image 490124 (© Kip Ladage)

 
Visual Triggers

Since I do not understand much of how the mind functions, I cannot explain how something I see (and photograph) around our home triggers fond memories of past activities in farther away places. This morning I experienced two examples of positive memory recalls.   

While walking at Sweet Marsh an adult bald eagle was flying overhead and watching me. Being one who does not want to miss any opportunities, I recorded a few images of the majestic bird. As I viewed the image files on my laptop, my mind wandered off to memories of shooting pictures of bald eagles near their nests on Lake Vermilion in Northern Minnesota. On Lake Vermilion I photograph the eagles from my fishing boat or pontoon boat, not while hiking.

Speaking of Lake Vermilion…it is funny that I can lose my truck in a Walmart parking lot, yet I remember from year to year where the nests are located on the huge lake.   

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight:               

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight - Image 490017 (© Kip Ladage)

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight – Image 490017 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight - Image 490023 (© Kip Ladage)

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight – Image 490023 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight - Image 490024 (© Kip Ladage)

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight – Image 490024 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight - Image 490027 (© Kip Ladage)

Adult Bald Eagle in Flight – Image 490027 (© Kip Ladage)

 

The second memory trigger occurred when I noticed a flash of white as I crossed a bridge over the Wapsipinicon River. I pulled my truck to the side of the road and quietly walked to the bridge and looked down over the edge. Sure enough, I had seen something – three male goldeneyes and one female goldeneye. As the pictures show, the ducks either flew away or swam downstream to what they considered to be a safer place.     

Once again my memory flashed back to a couple of experiences with goldeneye ducks on Lake Vermilion. During one of those events a bald eagle was watching goldeneye hatchlings swimming with their momma. (Since I was in the area, the bald eagle did not take any of the little ducks.)   

Goldeneye Ducks on the Wapsipinicon River:   

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River - Image 490047 (© Kip Ladage)

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River – Image 490047 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River - Image 490059 (© Kip Ladage)

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River – Image 490059 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River - Image 490061 (© Kip Ladage)

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River – Image 490061 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River - Image 490062 (© Kip Ladage)

Goldeneye on Wapsipinicon River – Image 490062 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Lake Vermilion is a beautiful place and one that I would like to visit again and again.     

Joining the goldeneyes was a lone male hooded merganser (no photos of him).

This afternoon I walked around Sweet Marsh again. There is still much more ice than open water. In fact, there were several people ice fishing today. Soon Sweet Marsh will open up, but that has not happened yet.   

The sandhill cranes are present at the marsh in nice numbers. Some pairs have isolated themselves while in other areas I watch groups of cranes, like these ten.   

Ten Sandhill Cranes at Sweet Marsh:     

Ten Sandhill Cranes at Sweet Marsh - Image 490112 (© Kip Ladage)

Ten Sandhill Cranes at Sweet Marsh – Image 490112 (© Kip Ladage)

 

During my walk I noticed a mink swimming and running not far from an area where I often see muskrats. Since a mink will chase, catch, and eat a muskrat, I thought it might be worthwhile to stand still to see what would happen. I was wearing a ghillie suit so I blended into the environment quite well. It took a couple of minutes, but eventually the mink approached my area. The fast moving mammals waste little time sniffing around. This one looked for something to harass, found nothing, and moved on.   

Mink at Sweet Marsh:   

Mink at Sweet Marsh - Image 490116 (© Kip Ladage)

Mink at Sweet Marsh – Image 490116 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Mink at Sweet Marsh - Image 490118 (© Kip Ladage)

Mink at Sweet Marsh – Image 490118 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Mink at Sweet Marsh - Image 490124 (© Kip Ladage)

Mink at Sweet Marsh – Image 490124 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Mink at Sweet Marsh - Image 490126 (© Kip Ladage)

Mink at Sweet Marsh – Image 490126 (© Kip Ladage)

 

Finally, I want to share a large version of one of the saw-whet owl images I recorded yesterday. For some reason I really like this picture. I don’t know if it is the natural border or something else, but I like it. The image looks really nice as a background image on my computer. This picture may get printed and hung on a wall.     

Saw-whet Owl in Cedar Tree:

Large Size - Saw-whet Owl in Cedar Tree - Image 489888 (© Kip Ladage)

Large Size – Saw-whet Owl in Cedar Tree – Image 489888 (© Kip Ladage)

 

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