Juvenile Pied-billed Grebe - Image 660136 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 10-26-20

  One Way of Spreading Sweet Marsh has been overwhelmed with exotic/invasive aquatic plant species. Eurasian watermilfoil and brittle naiad choke off the water when established. Marten’s Lake this summer was nearly unusable, whether by paddle or motor.    Both vegetation species can become established when just a small part of either plant remains in …

Two Old Coots at Sweet Marsh - Image 624950 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 4-24-20

  Where Coots Go to Die Early today I paddled at Sweet Marsh – just for the sake of paddling and being out. Of course I was hoping to find something to photograph, but it would have been OK if I hadn’t. Overnight it seems most of the migratory birds have left. I saw no …

American Coot at Sweet Marsh - Image 622520 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 4-16-20

  Pied-billed Grebes and American Coots Early this morning I tried to use somewhat hidden cameras to record video of pied-billed grebes and American coots at Sweet Marsh. I did not have much time, but in the time I was there I was able to capture some action clips of both species. While shooting video …

Rough-legged Hawk in Flight - Image 490157 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 3-12-18

  Species of the Day – Rough-legged Hawk; A Thought-provoking Conversation This first part of today’s post is intended to be informational for my bird watching friends.      Around the Sweet Marsh area and probably more of Northeast Iowa, it is not too difficult to find a rough-legged hawk hovering over suitable habitat in …

Virginia Creeper in Autumn - Image 462056 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 9-14-17

  Nature’s Palette Not too many days (maybe weeks) ago our landscape was a saturated green. Now, due to the calendar and quite likely the long-term lack of rain, a person can easily see just about every color in the palette. While I am not looking forward to many months of winter, I do enjoy …

Common Loon at Big Woods Lake - Image 432378 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 4-21-17

  Surprises at Big Woods Lake Early this morning I was paddling my kayak on Big Woods Lake near Cedar Falls. My hopes were that I might see (and hopefully photograph) a “not regularly seen in Iowa” species or two. My chances of success were minimal, but a person never really knows what they are …

Ruddy Ducks - Image 431042 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 4-14-17

  Bald Eagle Update and A Sweet Marsh Variety From Before the Rain I am saddened to announce the death this morning of Inga, the bald eagle rescued on the shores of the Cedar River on April 2, 2017. The best care was given, but since lead is toxic to birds and other species, the eagle …

Bonaparte's Gull - Image 428989 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 4-7-17 and 4-8-17

  Bald Eagle Update – And A Couple of Days of Shooting Bald Eagle (Inga) Update – Inga (the bald eagle) continues to fight a good fight to recover from lead poisoning. Terese (and probably Jim) are treating the eagle three times a day with medication and nutrition via tube feedings. When you think about …

Camo-covered Kayak - Image 417941

Kip’s Comments 2-20-17

  It Rained… Why is it that often when a person has a day off and very specific plans that call for sunshine, blue skies, and calm winds, they experience just the opposite – heavy clouds, rain, and wind? After yesterday’s outstanding wildlife interactions I was planning to get serious today with my camo-covered kayak, …

Sandhill Crane Hatchling at Nest With Adults - Image 375695

Kip’s Comments 4-29-16

  We Have Hatching… We Have Celebration? Windy or not, I paddled a bit today and was quite surprised. Two of three sandhill crane eggs I have been watching have hatched! There is one egg left to hatch and I expect that may have happened today after I left or will tonight or tomorrow. While …