Jim Williams has been watching birds and writing about their antics since before "Gilligan's Island" went into reruns. Join him for his unique insights, his everyday adventures and an open conversation about the birds in your back yard and beyond.

Muskrats

Posted by: Jim Williams under Bird interactions, Bird sightings, Birds in the backyard Updated: November 26, 2011 - 10:23 AM

 The four muskrats in the swampy pond behind our house continue to prep for winter. They seem to be fattening on duck weed, which sort of amazes me, given what duck weed looks like. Think teeny tiny corn flakes. They've built a lodge on the floating platform we created for Canada Goose nesting. They have at least two underground burrows. What they don't have is much water, the pond drying up as we continue to go without rain. I'm certain that the water will freeze completely to the bottom of the pond. I don't know what they're going to do then, but I'm just beginning to learn about and appreciate these animals. I hope to be able to photograph them into spring. We'll see. They are getting fat, though, if that will make a difference. There is a birding relationship here. I watch the muskrats while sitting quietly in a chair placed in brush at pond edge. Sit unobtrusively in one place for a long time and lots of things can be seen. I've had chickadees, nuthatches, cardinals, robins, Cedar Waxwings, and migrating sparrows all almost to close for use of a telephoto lens.

 

 

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