March 21, 2019
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Woodpecker, white-winged crossbill spice up hikes

I finally stopped procrastinating a hike on the Stillwater River Trail in Orono. It’s part of the great Orono Land Trust trail system. I enjoyed the walk, and some critters humored me with their presence.

I think the Eastern Phoebe was a first of year sighting and photo for me, perhaps it was a little early. The white-breasted nuthatch was very accommodating for it’s portrait. At the junction of the Fox Hole trail this pileated woodpecker challenged me with his constant movement and by staying mostly just out of sight. That’s the fun of wildlife picture taking.

The first of year groundhog was seen in a field off College Avenue. A walk on the McLaughlin Road on Sunkhaze Meadows National Wildlife Refuge netted this wind-blown bee fly, although common, and a member of the fly family, this is only the second time I’ve seen and photographed one.

My first-ever photo of the white-winged crossbill was an exciting few moments and I’m not disappointed with the result, but will embrace an opportunity to improve, also part of the fun. I’ve captured quite a few pine siskins this winter, but this one made me laugh as it seemed to be wearing a little red cap!


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