I had ideas of getting some photos in the Minnesota Valley Wildlife Refuge this afternoon. The mosquitoes were most excited about my visit, and tried to carry me away, forcing me to abandon that location. Mosquitoes 1, Eric 0.
As I was leaving in defeat, I noticed a puddle underneath 35W, and how it reflected the beautiful structure of the bridge itself. It’s not a particularly beautiful bridge, but I still love the honesty of its components, and how the light was bouncing off the road and onto the underside of the bridge.
So yes, puddles yield mosquitoes, but sometimes they also yield beautiful views.
This skunk family at Necedah National Wildlife Refuge is so stinkin’ cute!
Nestled in central Wisconsin, Necedah hosts habitats including wetlands, prairies, savannas and forests. The usfws refuge is home to whooping cranes, trumpeter swans, skunks and red-headed woodpeckers. Visitors to Necedah can enjoy great hiking trails and wildlife viewing. Video by Ariel Lepito.
Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge lies in northern Utah, where the Bear River flows into the northeast arm of the Great Salt Lake. The Refuge protects the marshes found at the mouth of the Bear River, providing a critical habitat for migrating birds. More than 250 species move through this area annually by the millions to rest and feed, including this group of baby burrowing owls pictured here. Photo by Katie McVey, USFWS.
Big News: Conservation efforts have helped rescue the West Indian manatee from extinction. Since 1991, the manatee population has grown 500 percent in Florida. It’s a huge #WildlifeWin. Learn more: http://on.doi.gov/1SAdgHx Photo by David Schritche, @usfws.
Photographer Barbara Scoles captured these images of grebe chicks
hitching a ride at Tulelake National Wildlife Refuge! It is common to
see grebe offspring ride on the backs of their swimming parents. The
young may even go underwater with them during dives.
In July of 2013, a wildlife biologist at Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge in Iowa was doing a routine check of the park’s bison herd when she noticed something odd about one of the bulls. He appeared to be bleeding, but not from a fight with another bull - he had been struck by lightning. He had a large burn wound on his hump, and another injury on his leg where the strike had exited. The bison was thin and limping after the strike, and wasn’t expected to live very long; since the injury was naturally caused, the refuge staff decided to let nature take its course. As they continued to monitor “Sparky’s” (as he was now called) health from a distance, he slowly healed, and two years later, is still going strong. Sparky is still a bit thinner than other bulls, at 1,600 lbs, but the 11 year old bull seems to have made an almost full recovery. -CEL
Cuteness alert: A baby coast horned lizard found on McGinty Mountain at the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge in California. Established in 1996, the San Diego Refuge protects habitats for threatened and endangered species, migratory birds, and rare plants and animals found in a variety of habitats. Photo by usfws biologist John Martin.