The Friday after my OFNC outing I took the afternoon off work and visited Jack Pine Trail. I had things on my mind and needed a distraction, and I knew a walk with my camera at one of my favourite trails would provide just the distraction I needed. It was after 3:30 when I got there; a little later than I planned, but still hot and sunny.
Just like my previous outing at Jack Pine Trail on Sunday, the first interesting thing I saw was not a bird, but rather a completely unexpected mammal – a raccoon on the ground near the OFNC bird feeder area. I think the raccoon had been eating some food left out for the deer when I startled him; I caught a glimpse of him galloping into the bush and then he was gone.
Early summer is a good time to visit the Beaver Trail in Stony Swamp. There is usually a wonderful diversity of butterflies and dragonflies, the birds are singing in the woods and in the wetlands, and the Red Squirrels and chipmunks seem tamer, often coming close in the hope of receiving a handout or two. I visited late in the afternoon, with the specific goal of photographing butterflies and dragonflies, starting my walk with a tour of the open wildflower alvar next to the parking lot. This area is usually good for dragonflies and butterflies, and I was not disappointed. I saw several Common Whitetails here and a couple of Four-spotted Skimmers. Later in the season this will be a good spot for meadowhawks.