I went on a bike ride the other day. I saw this bald eagle. Very far away almost past the limit of my camera. Two years ago I was quite sure that I had never seen a bald eagle in the wild. Since then I have seen lots of them.
And nearby a brief of White Pelicans. They are beautiful and comical at the same time.
And one of the big loners of the world, a Great Blue Heron. In some places, like on a beach, they are almost social with people but usually they keep their distance.
And I focused on a random pile of rocks and sure enough there were some basking turtles. They use up all the rocks and dead trees in the river.
And switching gears, our little Kodi, the Pomeranian graduated from puppy school!!
Here is what he was best at, the thirty foot treat run. He’s really been a good dog and we love him.
A shot from the front yard during a rainy interlude.
My wife and Kodi the pomeranian on a walk in the neighborhood greenbelt. I love the orangey sky.
I went on a bike ride on the Osage Prairie Trail in Osage County. This gas station was a location for the movie “The Outsiders” filmed way back in the 1980s. It has been restored by some volunteers and has a sign, fake gas pumps, paint inside and out and geocache. Which I found. One of my geocacher friends had a big role in the restoration.
A nearby church is having a revival!
The old railroad bridge on the trail is a favorite spot of mine for photos.
Switching Gears, this is a scene from Turkey Mountain on a recent hike.
And a shot from the RiverParks trails in Tulsa. I wasn’t hiking or biking, I was handing out gallons and gallons of coca cola and red bull to exhausted runners slogging through the Tulsa Ironman competion. 141 miles combined of swimming in open water, an over 100 mile bike ride, and a marathon distance run. It was a warm day. They had a 70 mile race for wimps.
I’m kidding about the half distance people being wimps. I couldn’t do it in a week. I admire their dedication. I have to admit though why people doing an endurance race would want red bull or coke.
The volunteer fuel was pizza. Unfortunately, my table was next to the truck so I ate more than I should have done.
Early in May this year I was invited to a small ceremony where Turkey Mountain Urban Wilderness in Tulsa was going to join the Old-Growth Forest Network. Hmmm, never heard of them but sounds interesting. Besides, there was a hike included in the event. Sign me up!!
The Old-Growth Forest Network is an organization founded by biologist, turned author, turned activist, Joan Maloof who became alarmed at the loss of old-growth forests in the eastern USA. Very little old-growth forests remain in the east, less than 1% of the orginal forests and maybe about 5% in the west.
Old-growth forests are those that have been undisturbed and old trees are allowed to grow old and die. I found out that old dead snags can provide habitat for up to 300 different species. The Old-Growth Forest Network is trying to find and designate at least one publicly owned tract of land in counties, that can contain such forests. They estimate that is about 2370 counties. Turkey Mountain is the 199th such forest to be designated and only the second in Oklahoma.
So the dignitaries made their speeches and a plaque was handed out.
I borrowed it for a closeup. And then we went on a hike. It was about a mile and we got to the location of the oldest tree on Turkey Mountain. I forget what kind of tree it is but the dendrologists say it got started in 1774. They only tested thirty some trees based on their experience of where the oldest trees would be. They said, rocky land on steep slope where logging is difficult is the best bet. So it is likely that there are older trees on Turkey Mountain.
True confessions, my original photo wasn’t very good so I went back recently and got this video. The tree is kind of old and bent and I couldn’t capture it in a still so I got this video. It’s not the prettiest or the biggest tree in the world but it is kind of special.
So it was a nice outing. I got to learn something and go on a hike. I’m always up for that.
This link is for the report on the event by one of Tulsa’s television station.
I bought one of Joan Maloof’s books. I got the kindle version because it is half the price of the paperback. I’ll let you know what I found out.
I was flying the drone the other evening. When I was bringing it back home our Pom Kodi showed up on the back patio in his capacity of manager of backyard security wanting to know what the intruder was.
I went on a bike ride on the Osage Prairie Trail north of Tulsa. It is a Rails to Trails project done years ago where an railroad is converted to trails. I love it because it goes through a lot of back country including ranches. I saw this Hereford cow looking happy in some tall green grass. Don’t see too many white faces like this any more.
And some of his friends, Angus cattle also grazing.
And in a different pasture I found some horses with their heads down.
And I found this little turtle crossing the road. Why did the turtle cross the road? (To get to the shell station!)
And a few miles away another, bigger turtle getting across the road.
And on a different outing on my first hike on Tulsa’s brand spanking new Mooser Greenway trail system I found myself a deer.
I love seeing deer.
Later on I found this feather. Google lens says it is from a red tailed hawk. I left it near where I found it.
And this might be the Shell Station. Just so happens I worked for Shell Oill for a short time and I learned that nothing makes a die hard Shell Oil employee madder than calling their logo a clam. It’s a pecten they will say in a heartbeat. So of course I doubled down on calling it a clam. Alrighty, sorry, I’ll get back to Saturday’s Critters.
I found this fresh cut disk cut out of a tree blocking the trail. I tried to count the rings and I came up with a 102 years old.
And speaking of red tailed hawks, this dude was up- on power pole looking for his lunch. He was a long ways away. At the very limit of my ancient Canon Superzoom camera. How far away you ask?
He was on top of the rightmost power pole as seen from our back yard. I love my DSLR with all the various lens but it is hard to be beat a superzoom for lightweight and usefulness in a wide variety of situations.
Here’s another photo of the hawk.
And here is the mandatory pic of Kodi the Pomeranian in a pensive mood. He’s the same color as our floor so he is Kamo Kodi in dim light inside.
I”m linking with Eileen’s Saturday’s Critters. Go check it out. Lots of talented bloggers link up with her.
For a while we had weeks and weeks of either clear blue skies or heavy overcast with rain, neither one of which lends themselves to using a drone to take photos. Lately though we have had some interesting skies so I have been launching it a little bit to see what I could find. I did all of flying over my backyard.
Looking southwest over the local elementary school. Some pink in the skies.
On another day, looking straight west
Another day looking west. That tall building on this and the previous photo used to be Oral Roberts University’s hospital and medical school.
Looking northwest from the backyard.
An overcast day, I launched the drone anyway and got this shot. The clouds were too heavy for color in the sky so I just got some brighter sky further up.
More color in the northwestern sky.
Another view of the northwest sky.
I have a lot of fun flying my drone although I don’t develop much flying skill just going up and down from my back yard.
I headed out recently to Oxley Nature Center in north Tulsa to hike the trails and see what kind of animals were out and about.
During the middle of the day I didn’t expect to find any deer but I found a small family of three resting in the woods. They didn’t seem too bothered by me.
This young one was browsing then laid down with its back to me. Go Away!!
I found this cool butterfly resting on a trail. Google Lens tells me that it is a Gorgone Checkerspot. I have never heard of such a thing.
This turtle was catching a few rays.
Two grown and two baby geese (goslings). I’ve done my research and apparently you can’t call a group of geese less than five in number a gaggle of geese. A group of swimming geese is called a plump. So here is plump of geese. I find the names of groups of animals fascinating. My favorite is a Murder of Crows. So I can truthfully say that I have seen a few murders.
A raft of ducks. I think this raft is blue wing teals according to google lens.
And a solitary great blue heron.
Too blurry of a photo for an ID but these birds were swooping all over the place. I got a new word maybe. A group of unidentified blurry birds flying really fast is called a Swoop. You heard it first here. You better check in often to keep up to date.
I found this funky looking dragonfly on a trail. Not good enough of a photo to get google lens to give me results that I am happy with.
And on the home front.
Our six pound Pomeranian puppy Kodi is a bundle of energy. He hates to be separated from my wife. If she is outside he pogos at the door to join her. When she’s inside he wants in. I guess that he has separation anxiety.
That’s it for this week. I’m linking with Eileen’s Saturday’s Critters. Go check it out, lots of great animalcentric posts by some very talented photobloggers.