Finally, It’s Here!

After what was probably the warmest December on record here in North Carolina, the icy weather is upon us. Don’t get me wrong, I’d greatly appreciate a winter with a much reduced heating bill, where I didn’t have to put on layer upon layer of clothes (I’m outside most of the day), and snow, well, snow just didn’t happen. But, it is January and it’s supposed to be cold, even here in the heart of Carolina. This morning, I took aRead more

Tracks in Ice

  As I stood on the Main Wetlands Overlook, I noticed a track of smooth ice coming from the willows on the north side of the Wetlands and heading directly towards the platform on which I stood. The track was frozen over, but frozen over more recently than the surrounding ice. Obviously, some creature had swum through the ice when it was slushy, creating a trail and the trail had subsequently frozen over. I looked over the rail at theRead more

Snow – Geese

  The water in the Wetlands, after several days of temps above freezing, has thawed a bit. A section of the pond on the far side of the Wetlands is open. Our two visiting geese, who have been absent since the beginning of last week due to the complete freeze up of the Wetlands at the time, are back. They must have flown over, spotted the open water and dropped in. Snowing as it is this morning (unexpectedly snowing), aRead more


  The waterfowl situation here at the Museum has been sketchy as of late. With the shallow water being frozen at least some of the early morning hours, the groups of mergansers that we experienced earlier in the season have disappeared. They’ve apparently found better ponds and lakes to catch fish and socialize. Two mergansers, however, seem loyal to our site. It’s difficult to determine if the pair is indeed the same two mergs that I regularly see here inRead more

Sunset and thin ice!

As I was leaving for the day last night I couldn’t help but notice the incredible scene in the western sky. These high clouds moved in during the afternoon and made for a spectacular sunset. After so many days of cloudy, drizzly, rainy weather it was especially rewarding to witness this brilliant display. Soon after, the skies cleared and the cold set in. This morning there was a thin sheet of ice on much of the Wetlands. It’s supposed toRead more

The Ice Cometh and the Ice Goeth

The first few days of the year brought with them the first ice over of the Wetlands. The ice will soon be history, all gone. I, or we, know that the ice will be gone within a day or two since the TV, internet, and radio tells us these things ahead of time. But for some of the creatures that live in and depend on the Wetlands for food, ice is not a good thing and it can’t be predictedRead more


It’s cold outside! The water of the Wetlands is frozen clear across the pond. The Hooded Mergansers have taken flight for larger bodies of water. I’ve seen the Belted Kingfisher fly in each day to inspect the pond for open water only to leave frustrated, its loud, raucous rattle filling the frigid air. The Great Blue Heron has stuck it out, staying on the fringes of the pond where it might find a small patch of open water. Is there any openRead more