illinois garden

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Bohemian Waxwing by Patrick Connolly
Via Flickr:
Vagrancy is such a cool phenomenon when it comes to birds. Bohemian waxwings should not be found in Illinois, yet every few years one seems to pop up. This is the first time that I have ever seen this beautiful bird. A few days ago, local birder Al Stokie reported seeing one at the Chicago Botanic Garden and it has been reported each day since. With today being my free day I decided that this bird was worth a look. I was sorting through a group of cedar waxwings when Nolan Lemeka joined me. He soon found the bird, yet I did not get my lens to it on time. After a bit of waiting the bird came back and thankfully I was able to capture a few images before it flew off again. After a long wait I decided to check a couple of other likely locations for the bird when Nolan callled and told me that the bird was relocated at the original sight. A fairly large gathering of scopes, binoculars, and cameras made the bird’s location very apparent. This time the bird stayed for a while and many frames were exposed. A special thanks to Al Stokie and Nolan Lameka for without those two gentlemen these images would not have been captured.

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Plants of the Day
Saturday 25 October 2014

A few of the beautifully displayed and cared for bonsai in the courtyards devoted to this horticultural skill at the Chicago Botanic Garden, Illinois. A Ginkgo biloba (maidenhair tree) over 100 years old, older than those I saw in the city of Chicago (top photograph), and Acer buergerianum (trident maple) just starting to display its autumn colours (lower photograph).

Jill Raggett