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Welcome to the Pine River Review. Our sight is dedicated to our little homestead located along the Pine River tucked inside the Chippewa Nature Center's 1400 Acres of wild in Michigan's lower penninsula. We love to share our pictures, video, comment, and our own homespun music. Step inside our world as we celebrate this beautiful nook!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

World Bird Wednesday LXX

A Swan Song

"Conversation about the weather is the last refuge of the unimaginative."
                                                                                                            Oscar Wilde

    Whose complaining about two weeks of 70 and 80 degree weather in the middle of a Michigan March when our average highs are traditionally only 42? Not I. The brave daffodils are in bloom three weeks early, we are in a hurry, nature and me.
    Burning up with spring fever, the tropical weather has lit the fuse on my inner handyman, already the fruit trees are pruned, I am knee deep into installing a new window in the barn and establishing a new vegetable garden just for kicks. It was time for a break.
    I started getting a little nervous about missing the migration given the remarkable weather and took a early season drive to Fish Point Preserve to see if anything was shaking. Tornado warnings were in effect in the counties North and South of the lower shore of Lake Huron's Saginaw Bay. Large flocks of Tundra swans, Canadian geese, and Trumpeter swans had collected in the stubble fields to avoid the violent skies. I had never seen a Tundra swan migration before! A species that mates for life, and perhaps beyond, the bond was mirrored in the synchronicity of their wing play during the slow descent to earth. Love is literately in the air, a stirring marriage of body and mind. So sublime is their singularity of passion, if one of the pair should come to a premature end the other will prefer to spend the rest of it's days flying solo and unattached; except to the memory of that one lost soul mate.
    The grounded throngs numbered in the thousands, at least that's my guess, about two or three percent of the entire Eastern North American population corralled for the evening by the wicked weather. Breeding pairs of Tundra swans are among the first to arrive in the Arctic, by then they are ready to be alone, defending a breeding territory of nearly a mile square. The non-breeding cygnets remain elsewhere, flock bound in daycare, while the adults are off!

"The way is not in the sky. The way is in the heart."

There were other targets to entice my attention like a pair of mad dashing Killdeer cutting up overhead.

My first GB heron and Great egret of the year were fishing in the paper dry reed beds of the marsh.

This nervous pair of love sick geese wanted nothing but to be left alone, obviously a first date!

Post script....
                     Yes! Mom received her Ipad and loves her little window on the world. She likes the comfy size. Her abandoned laptop has a stack of mail and clippings on it. It appears Microsoft has lost another customer and Apple can start tracking a new "over ninety" demographic!

You might want to try clicking on one of these pictures and enjoy the slide show!

This is the home of World Bird Wednesday. A place for bird photographers from around the world to gather and share their photographs and experiences as they pursue Natures most beautiful treasurers, the birds.

You don't have to be a Bird Watcher or expert photographer to join in, just enjoy sharing what you bring back from your explorations and adventures into nature!

#1Simply copy the above picture onto your W.B.W. blog entry, it contains a link for your readers to share in the fun. Or, you can copy this link on to your blog page to share WBW.

#2Come to The Pine River Review on Tuesday Noon EST North America through Wednesday midnight and submit your blog entry with InLinkz.

#3Check back in during the course of the next day and explore these excellent photoblogs!

The idea of a meme is that you will visit each others blogs and perhaps leave a comment to encourage your compatriots!

Come on it's your turn!


  1. would love to see that huge migration! what a spectacle! love your killdeer shot - clear as can be! and your GBH has such pretty blue breeding eyeshadow... :)

  2. Capturing the flight is fantastic. The blue heron is just beautiful.

  3. These shots are awesome!
    Happy WBW evening to you!

  4. It's wonderful to see the spring migration has begun! I too am excited to see and photograph many birds. Wonderful shot of the killdeer. I can hear them but so far have not seen them.

  5. Gorgeous photos! That sky shot is beautiful, Springman! Love those clouds. We really aren't in a big migration zone and don't get to see large flocks of birds like that. Particularly not waterfowl. We're having record temperatures already this week.

  6. Thats amazing how you captured these birds!! Wonderful photos all of them. Nr 6 is my favorite, so many swans :)

  7. Superb pics. I too witnessed the Tundra swan migration!

  8. You continue to inspire me to get out there and keep on trying. I am especially drawn to the Killdeer pictures as I had 4 or 5 on my radar yesterday and they did their best, with success I might add, to frustrate me. Sounds like you are relishing your retirement. Good for you. Another enjoying read, thank you.

  9. I love that killdeer. Another wonderful series of shots!

  10. Springman, gorgeous images! But then I have come to expect nothing less!
    While you are sweltering in the heat, we are still struggling with old man Winter. We have had snow every day this past week. It's not sticking or anything like that, it's just the idea that it's still doing it!
    I'm becoming increasingly POed at the entire situation so far. And, Oscar, I don't think I'm unimaginative. Just fed up with the cold and rain and snow!

  11. Love the ominous sky shot!
    Look at that list of things you've been doing and you wondered what you would do upon retirement. :)
    Beautiful shots as always!
    I saw a Killdeer this week and I'm hoping for a nest.

  12. swans are beautiful and powerful birds. And so many. More then I can see over here. I had muteswand today but have not yet checked the shots.
    Great inflight shots of teh Killdeer too. :)
    But how did the cloud happen? Such a peculier one. Love it. :)

    Glad your mom likes her Ipad. :)

  13. Welcome everyone to WBWLXX!
    Thank you for your kind words. It is a pleasure to share what I am seeing and to enjoy the sights from your nook of the woods.
    Retirement still feels like a prolonged vacation and already I think my hearing is getting a little better from not having that siren blaring. The chorus frogs are so loud in the wetlands this year!
    I have been sleeping well and have had no fire dreams to report. Smooth sailing!

  14. How thrilling it must be to see such a large group of swans. Your photos are wonderful. The picture of the threatening sky looks like the evening we had a devastating tornado just south of us.
    Glad you're enjoying your retirement.1

  15. Beautiful post! The second photo and quotation are simply awesome!

  16. Those swans are spectacular! The Killdeer flight shot is so sharp and nicely composed. When it gets so warm up north I worry that a big cold front can't be far behind!

  17. Marvelous, marvelous images and the Great Blue Heron, your first ever image taken of it...that is remarkable. I really like the way it shows so well in the elements around it. The migration flight images are amazing, all of it is amazing to tell the truth. I know that you are enjoying retirement more and more. Have a great week and thank you again for hosting World Bird Wednesday~

  18. Sir Springman,
    Each time I take the trip across the infinite reaches of cyberspace to alight at your door of perception here, am invariably aware of entering a space which can only be described as radiating a powerful aura of amazing natural grace, inhabited by a warm heart and a clear eye. It is a deep pleasure and treasure to make such a voyage when time allows. Do continue please for many years to come and heartily so... may your retirement bring you nothing but luminous moments in tune and in touch with what you obviously love profoundly.

    The new header photo is great. They are singing, right ? I think perhaps (I can't be sure because the audio track wasn't working on your photo for some reason) they must have been singing a rendition of that old song from Bad Company, called : "Seagull"...

  19. Fabulous birds and photos, Springman! The Killdeer in flight and the Snow geese in flight are my favorites. I would like to buy a Ipad too!

  20. Wonderful birds in flight pics ... poetry in motion!

  21. A wonderful post... beautiful images and words as always..

  22. Hey Dave, glad to hear that your Mom likes the iPad! Beautiful shots of the Swans and the Killdeer in flight is amazing! Not easy to photograph those speedsters in flight!

  23. i would be so excited to see this!!

    how could your mom not LOVE her ipad!! bravo to her that her mind is still open to technology!!

  24. Don't you just love migration time? Nearby city Erie, Penna is right on the route, but we don't get there too often. Awesome shots as usual.
    Tundra swans are my most favorite..Beautiful images..
    Go Yankees!

  25. Gorgeous birds, and great captures. I also like that sky shot very much. Thanks for all the bird links,

  26. Great photos of the birds on spring migration.

  27. What a spectacular migration! I loved the lovesick geese.

  28. Hi there - looking at your new header, it seems to be the week for gulls!

    Splendid post below the header as well!

    SM - Australia

  29. Wonderful photographs.

    Regards and best wishes

  30. Breathtaking images; what an experience! So good to see these beauties through your eyes and camera.

  31. What a week! I have visited about 30 blogs so far and the sights have been tremendous. It is hard to name another venue with such brilliant bloggers contributing to it. It is intense, truly like a trip around the world.
    I am so inspired that I'm going to hit the road and see whats out there this evening for myself. I'll have lots of time tonight and tomorrow morning to dive back into the blogs and hopefully have about a thousand bird pictures to leaf through this weekend.
    Wish me luck, gas is expensive for a retired person!

  32. Wow what a huge flock of swans. I love the shot of the heron.

  33. I love the swans and the story of the swans! I love the photo of the killdeer too! I saw my first Great blue heron of the year at the bog last night, approrpriate for the first day of spring don't you think! Good for you to take some time off from chores to go birding! Hurrah for your Mom for being brave enough to try an iPad! My Mom is done with her chemo and doing very well. Thank you for your kind comments and encouragement on my blog. I hope retirement is sitting well with you and that you are adjusting peacefully.

  34. Wonderful to be there for the swan migration -- beautiful pictures as always. Kildeer are a great favorite of mine.

    I also love the laughing gulls in the banner.

    I'm glad you're keeping busy in your retirement ;>)! And hooray for the over 90 demographic. Your mom rocks!

  35. Hi Springman,
    I'm so happy you are adjusting to retirement, sounds like you have been keeping yourself busy. The photos of the Killdeer and sky shot are amazing!

    Yes, there seems to be a "whole lotta love" going on in nature right now and I am looking forward to watching all the young ones in my yard!

  36. 80 in Wisconsin... allergies in full swing... some wonderful pics you posted today... retirement treating you well

  37. I would love to see that migration! Must be amazing.

    Lovely shots!

  38. That first photo of the pair of swans coming in for a landing is simply superb!! I love it!! And the next shot of the turbulent sky is glorious, too!!