Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A Second Look--January 7, 2015

Downy woodpecker, male
Yesterday we had a few inches of snow which brightened up the otherwise muted winter landscape of grays and browns. However before that, Wally and I had a good time exploring our muted yard when he did a Second Look with me last weekend. He saw many things he was interested in but I won't feature them here because they were mostly things that I have shown you recently.

The thing I got most excited about this week were claws on the toes of a female cardinal. I never thought about the details of their feet and didn't realize that they had claws sticking out from their thin leathery toes. Besides curling their toes around a branch, they use their claws to also help them hang on in a tree. Makes perfect sense, however I never noticed them before. Sometimes I get bored with the idea of doing Second Looks since I have been doing them almost weekly for 3 1/2 years now (time flies), but then I find something totally new and it makes it all worth while.

Here are some things I saw this week 
during a Second Look.

It was hard at first to see this mushroom hiding in the pine needles.

This little plant in the fork of the maple tree is one of the greenest things around.

We saw lots of deer prints.

The hoof prints of this cow were at least 2x as big as those of the deer.

Blue Jay

If you look very closely, you can see the claws of this female cardinal curving out from its toes.

You can see the claws better from this view.

Wally, my Second Look partner this week.