Exploring Nature One Step At A Time

Posts tagged “Mourning Dove

A Beautiful Mosaic of Spring Emerges From May Showers

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I relinquish the burden of the past to step lightly toward my future. ~ Lee Hiller

May showers arrive as waves of thunderstorms barreling out of Texas and Kansas into Arkansas.  After each passing storm the ground cover thickens and new Wildflowers appear as others multiple across the Forest floor.  A lovely Mourning Dove walks us down the trail as a Male Cardinal and Red-Eyed Vireo serenade. Each colorful Wildflower becomes a tile in an always changing Spring Mosaic.

Another line of thunderstorms are heading our way and I wonder what new life the rain will bring forth. Nature patiently teaches us the beauty of change.  Nothing can stay the same, nor would we want and unchanging landscape to greet us each day.  Her subtle shifts between each season soften our Hearts to the unpredictability of life.

Love to ALL!
Lee


A Walk to the Post Office Art, Architecture and Aves

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If you could view these sights on a walk to the post office wouldn’t you think up reasons to go buy a stamp? I journeyed through Hot Springs Historic District then along Bath House Row on my way to the Post Office and on the Promenade in Hot Springs National Park returning home.

Love to ALL!
Lee


Little Birds and Wildflowers in the Spring Green

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Sweet juvenile Birds and beautiful Wildflowers all wrapped in an ever growing cocoon of green. Who could ask for a better spring hike?  After last years drought and brutal Christmas Day storm it is wonderful to witness the rebirth of the Forest.  It is time to step outside and breath with Nature…

Love to ALL!
Lee


Wildflowers and Birds among the Tree Sculptures

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Each hike reveals an ever changing open space art gallery.  The winter Forest of Hot Springs National Park is filled with beautiful Tree sculptures.  You can see a struggle for life in each trunk curve and branch bend.  Pushed by storms, twisted by high winds, battered by ice and snow each Tree has a story to share.   Colorful Rocks are a canvas for the lichen, mold and fungi to paint their glorious abstracts.  Awakening wildflowers push through the leaves, twigs and seeds reaching for sunlight.  Their late winter petal pallet of purple and violet dot the landscape.   Lovely Birds are beginning to build homes in the branches that will soon be sheltered by new leaves.  They sing sweet songs to visitors about the promise of spring.  A living art gallery near you is waiting for you to visit… get out and play!

Love to ALL!
Lee

PS A storm is on the way so I took a detour after my hike to see the Cherry Blossoms :)


Beautiful Juvenile Birds Along the Trails

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Nature wraps me in her gentle embrace as she sings to the first light. ~ Lee Hiller

We have experienced several days that included beautiful life giving rain showers.  Sadly this interlude of moisture did not arrive in time to save many beloved Trees in the Forest.  Joyously I can report the rain has brought out many lovely juvenile Birds and wildflowers.  I was also blessed to see my dear friend Bob a female Squirrel this morning as I headed into the Mountains.

Beautiful blue Asiatic Dayflowers are blooming again on the Carriage Road. It was wonderful to see a juvenile Cardinal, Blue Jay, Carolina Wren and Mourning Dove.  Even Lichen had enough moisture to begin painting the Rocks again.

The rain was a glorious gift this week, the Forest felt alive after so many months of drought. It was a perfect morning in the Forest.

Love to ALL!
Lee


Cycle Of Life and a Squirrel Heat Dump on a Twilight Hike

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We brave the 90 degree temperatures for a twilight hike up then around Hot Springs Mountain.  As Rick and I head up the Peak Trail we encounter a juvenile Mourning Dove bobbing along in the the dimming light.  I decide it is best to back away when I realize it was not going to fly off.  The young ones are often much too trusting. It is always a blessing to see the beauty of new Life in the Forest.

From the mountain top we hike along the east side of the Hot Springs Mountain Trail.  It is a peaceful journey listening to the rustling leaves and the sound of waking nocturnal residents.  Hidden from sight Hawks and Owls began to call to the impending night.

On the Fountain Trail a lovely baby Squirrel ventures out under the watchful eye of Mom.  It is a joy to watch its delicate leaping, digging and foraging success. So beautiful standing to scan the horizon of it’s new world, we are spellbound by the sight of innocence.

Nearing home Rick spots a squirrel stretched out on it’s belly in the shade near a fountain on the Promenade bricks.  We creep closer in the fading light and at first it appears the unmoving Squirrel is injured. We learn later this behavior is called “Heat Dumping”, a method for reducing body temperature.  A minute later the male Squirrel spots a dog and springs into action.  Once on his feet he begins chasing his mating chase of a female who has been watching him from behind the fountain. A delightful way to end our evening hike.

Love to ALL!
Lee


Nature Weaves a New Tapestry of Living Artistry

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Some spring days reveal a fantastic transformation as Nature weaves a new tapestry of living artistry before our eyes.  When my Husband Rick and I headed up into Hot Springs National Park it was clear Nature was painting a glorious spring portrait. It began with the “The Chinaberry Butterfly Trees” and continued across the mountain.

Each Tree and Leaf held beauty either of it’s own design or via a delicate visitor.  Butterflies and Hummingbird Moths danced lightly across the green seeking warmth and sustenance.   Tiny birds hid within the new canopy building nests and calling to would be mates and suitors.  Each step along the trail pulled us into a glowing tunnel of new greenery.  Wildflowers became delicate brushstrokes of color on the canvas of the Forest floor.  Spring was creating a magical ever-changing landscape and for a brief moment in time we were a part of its beautiful artistry.

Special thanks to the sweet Mourning Dove that against its instincts did not fly off as planned.  Your graceful wing stretch should have heralded your departure. Instead you chose to stay and even walked back toward me. Your flight up into the Tree when others approached did however seem prudent. I am grateful you trusted me to take your photograph.

Love to ALL!
Lee


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