A Walk to Josey Ranch

Last week I was in Carrollton, TX and decided to get my exercise by walking from my parents’ house to Josey Ranch Lake Park. It’s about a mile each way. I printed a Google map for the walking route since the route meanders through a neighborhood. It was an easy morning walk. And there were some winter-time birds newly arrived for the season at the lake. The first ones I spotted were Northern Shovelers. They are easy to recognize by the bill that looks too big for the head.

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I’d seen American wigeons before…but not often enough that I remembered what they were. I took lots of pictures and then checked All About Birds to identify them when I got back from my walk.

The other bird that winters in this area that I saw at the lake was a cormorant. It was harder to spot because it was fishing (diving frequently) and it was seemingly alone.

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There were birds that are in the area all through the year too: Common grackles

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And American Coots (the two birds in the foreground below…with a Northern Shoveler behind them).

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Now that I’ve identified the types of birds present…see how easily they can be recognized in these mixed group images. They were all feeding together at the lake.

I walked a little further around the lake and took pictures of turtles warming up for their day…I got a little too close and they plopped into the water.

I walked back to where I started the loop around the lake. I had just started taking more group pictures of the ducks when some American coots got into a tussle and startled the whole group….lots of splashing water as birds lifted off and moved to the center – safer – part of the lake.

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As I walked hope I saw a very large katydid on a fence. It was turning brown with the season.

There was also a very dense group of weed flowers growing in a narrow band of dirt between the fence and concrete….a fall floral.

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