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Monday, 18 June 2018

Waves of land

Mere feet above sea level, the countryside of western Prince Edward Island where we live is flat with gently rolling hills in some areas. As one travels east, the countryside changes to hills, formed by glacial till deposited between 10,000 to 15,000 year ago from melting glaciers. 





Looking over the central countryside, it looks as if the land attempted to mirror the motion of her sister, the sea, with waves as well. These waves are bigger than those of the sea in our part of the ocean however.





As we walked along a Heritage Road in the center of the island, these land waves were obvious as we crested the hills and walked through the troughs of these static waves. 





The vegetation closed over Perry Road prevents a clear view into the distance unlike the asphalt over the open countryside. 





This area provided a workout compared to our regular routes.





This glimpse of the fields in one area along the way was unusual as the road cut through forest along much of its length. 





However, in several places, one could see the remnants of human habitation, an old gate or an old road, long grown over.





Bird greetings made us welcome but the only one we saw was this Yellow bellied sapsucker who was busy on a favourite tree.





Black flies were in abundance as the wind was calm but insect repellent helped. We check for ticks any time we’ve been outdoors these days since they are here too.


The incline on the treadmill will get a few workouts before our next walk among the waves in the center of the island.

Friday, 15 June 2018

The veil

Our recent visit to a Heritage Road in central Prince Edward Island took us past a watershed conservation area overseen by the Trout River Environmental Committee. The non-profit group wants to “restore the natural integrity” of that watershed.


The waterfall, like a veil over the face of the pond, made us stop. 





In this area, boats appear to launch, people stop to fish,




and a ladder helps fish swim up river. 





A lone cormorant swam on the far side, periodically diving and resurfacing meters from his original place.





Overhead, tree swallows flitted in the air; their antics made us stop and watch. One of two bird houses in the area was broken on one side and straw could be seen through the opening. The birds availed of these homes.





The sound of the water was calming as was the scene. We will visit again, maybe to fish and have a picnic with the kids.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

The final show

She cried to break her heart. Her mother, our daughter, wrapped her arms around her oldest child, Sylvie, and asked what was wrong.


“Dance is over again,” Sylvie replied through the sobs.


This was the scene after the final show for the 2017-18 season. The last ten months were busy for both granddaughters, as dance classes filled the calendar. At seven, Sylvie took three classes and assisted her teacher with a class of younger students. Five year old Caitlin took two classes.


The showcase for the students who worked so hard all year was a treat. From the little four year olds to the senior students, everyone did a wonderful job.


This year Sylvie had the stage to herself for a brief time as Snow White, summoning princesses on stage, the girls from the class she helped with all year. She proceeded to put them to sleep with a bite from that special apple. 





Sylvie also performed with her tap and ballet classes, never missing a beat.





Caitlin performed her ballet steps as a mouse. She was not shy on stage and performed every movement well. She was the cutest mouse ever!





For now, dancing is a passion for both girls. Who knows what the future will bring but Sylvie and Caitlin are already talking about what classes they want to do next year. 

Monday, 11 June 2018

In the neighbourhood

This is the second year a skulk of foxes has made its den in the small green belt near our daughter’s home. The skulk is smaller than last year, but the three foxes are active late every afternoon, undisturbed by people enjoying their neighbourhood.


During our last visit, the three were out in the afternoon sun, oblivious to Georgie, the golden retriever, the three kids and the group of adults nearby. People walked their dogs on the sidewalk a few meters away and the animals were oblivious to it all.


The pup is black with hints of a lighter colour. 





It stayed near its mother the entire time we were there.





It was in a playful mood and walked over the vixen and nipped at her. She tolerated  the young one’s antics.





The male is blond and lighter in colour than the vixen. He is unconcerned about the pup which ignores himtoo. He relaxes in the grass away from the other two.





The vixen is a mix of colours and alert to the humans in her environment but comfortable enough to tolerate their presence.





Soon they will move on for another year when the pup is old enough to venture forth on its own. We’ll look forward to their return visit.


Friday, 8 June 2018

The fishing trip

Our intention was to go fishing. Well, our daughter and the two girls would fish, my husband, my mother-in-law, baby Owen and I would watch, chat and enjoy the time outside together. Of course I had my camera with me to document our time at this new-to-us fishing hole. 


Black Pond is close to home and a stone’s throw from Malpeque Bay, Prince Edward Island. The fishing spot along the bank is a few feet from the parking lot. We settled in quickly and baited hooks for the girls who competed for the first fish.




There was something at the end of the pond and I was eager to see what it was. Birds I hoped. When I checked with the camera, surprise! Dead wood! Of course birds would not have been visible from this distance.




Within ten minutes a huge bird flew directly overhead and down the pond. It had a white underbody and a huge fish in its talons. An eagle! I captured a poor photo but it gives the idea of the immensity of the fish and the bird which carried it.





It landed on the wood at the end of the pond. The photos which follow were taken via the digital zoom of my camera so they are not sharp. They do show the story of bald eagles having an early supper however.

The eagle sat on a stump, holding the sea bass beneath it with its talons. Periodically it raised its wings as to balance itself.





It picked at the the fish for several minutes then gave its best call, just audible from our location.





Within a few minutes another eagle appeared from south of the pond and landed on a stump near the first one.





It proceeded to eat the bass which the other eagle had caught and used its wings to balance as well.





It dropped the fish several times and had difficulty keeping its balance on the stump.





Then it decided to leave with the fish, possibly to go to the nest. However, first it had to challenge the other bird 





before it flew off with the remains of the bass.




The bird stayed for a short time, then flew to the same area as the previous eagle.


This was a once in a lifetime chance to watch the bald eagles in their element. It was quite a fishing trip though the humans didn’t catch any fish.