Easter Sunday dawned bright and sunny, and I found it terribly amusing that the first mammal I saw (other than the usual squirrels sitting on my back deck waiting for me to feed them) was an Eastern Cottontail rabbit near the storm water management ponds in my subdivision. This is the first rabbit I’ve seen since early January when one spent a couple of weeks hanging around my street, so I got out of the car to take a few pictures. As it was Easter Sunday, I was briefly tempted to go up to him to see if he’d laid any Cadbury chocolate Easter eggs; then I decided that to do so would seriously damage any credibility I may have gained as an amateur naturalist!
Saturday was supposed to be sunny as well, but thick clouds moved in late in the morning and that same cold north wind kept temperatures in the single digits. I started the day off with a walk at Jack Pine Trail where I hoped to photograph the Winter Wren. I didn’t hear him in his usual spot behind the OFNC feeder, but when I heard the chickadees calling excitedly a little further down the path I discovered a juvenile accipiter flying over the marsh. It dove into the cattails but failed to catch anything; it emerged from the vegetation and landed on a tree branch with its back to me. Then he turned his head and saw me, and I saw the yellow eyes of an immature bird. He flew off before I could see any features that would identify him.