Two Generations of Red Ears

Tuesday, May 9, 2017,


This is a pair of Red-eared Sliders that I saw at Frank Melville Park in Setauket. To be honest, I never noticed the little guy till I was reviewing my shots when I got home. To the uninitiated this might seem like an obvious choice for a Mother’s Day post. Unfortunately, there is no real reason to believe that these two turtles are related. Like most other turtle species, Red-eared Sliders make their nests and lay their eggs, and that’s it. It’s a system that works for them. This is a species of turtle that doesn’t belong this far north but they have been conquering new territory thanks mostly to the pet trade, despite the fact that it is no longer legal to sell Red-eared Sliders in New York. Unfortunately, these turtles were able to establish themselves in our waters long before any such sanctions took place. Nature has no need to wait for politicians to take notice of the obvious. JK

A Pheasant at Twin Oaks

Wednesday, April 23, 2014,

Ring-necked Pheasant at Twin Oaks Horse Sanctuary

This is a Ring-necked Pheasant that I saw at Twin Oaks Horse Sanctuary. Twin Oaks is a non-profit horse rescue/sanctuary in Manorville, NY. They rescue older, unwanted horses and give them a nice place to live out their days. They really do good stuff. I was there to help capture some video footage for a fundraising appeal. All morning I had been hearing the pheasants call out but I could never locate one. They sound sort of like a rooster with a sore throat but without the whole cock-a-doodle-do bit. After we got the footage for the video I went back to searching for pheasants. I was still hearing them but not seeing any when Cynthia, (the young lady that was writer, director, producer, editor, and reluctant star of the vid), took the time out to point this guy out to me. She did this while she was distributing hay for the horses with a wheelbarrow. Hey, it’s not all videos and glamour when you’re caring for horses. This guy was in some underbrush at first so I had to stalk him a bit before capturing this shot in a somewhat more open area but without Cynthia’s help, this shot never happens. I’d still be scratching my head, wondering where the heck that bird was. Thank you Cynthia, and good luck with your fundraiser. JK

For more information about Twin Oaks, you can visit them here and this is them on Facebook. Please consider helping them out.


Young Ring-necked Pheasant At Avalon

Saturday, November 23, 2013,

20131012085015-5x7wFour Harbors Audubon Society holds its monthly walks every second Saturday at Avalon Preserve in Stony Brook. These walks are great for sharing and collecting all kinds of nature info. I’ve learned a great deal during these walks, and not just about birds. It has been my experience that ‘birders’ are not all about birds themselves. I’ve yet to meet anyone on these Audubon walks that doesn’t see or look for the bigger picture. Each of our walkers seem to enjoy nature as a whole, not just the birdy parts. Of course, these walks are about birds so it’s always cool, and well, wonderful, to find any interesting feathered critters. Our October walk did not let us down. This is a young Ring-necked Pheasant, probably male, that we encountered that morning. This guy may look a bit drab now but he’ll grow up to be snazziest dresser on the block. And who can tell? Perhaps we’ll see this same bird during a future walk. I certainly hope so. They make for great pics. JK.

A Red-Bellied Turtle Wearing Algae

Thursday, September 12, 2013,

This is a female Red-bellied Turtle that I saw resting along the Lower Carmans River. Her carapace, (that’s upper shell to folks like you and me), appears to be covered with some sort of algae. I’m not sure if this is a lifestyle comment or a fashion statement. It’s not my place to judge. JK