It snowed the day we were arriving in the Outer Banks. I just had time to grab this image of the Bodie Lighthous before the sun dropped. The snow reflected the purplish light just as the sun's last flames settled in the west.
Mattamuskeet Lake at Sunrise
Mattamuskeet Lake at Dawn
Sunrise & Grass
We drove and drove and yet barely made the sunrise! I could not resist the golden light on Oat Grass.
Muskrat Bath, Part 3
He has gorgeous little hands, my guess is that he was grooming them with his teeth., or vice versa
Muskrat Bath, Part 1
Getting up close and personal with mammals in North America is a big deal for me, even if it's a muskrat. I only figured out what was happening when I had edited all of my images. He was bathing.
Muskrat Bath, Attending to a Little Itch
I think the fleas just burrowed in closer to stay warm, there was a lot of scratching.
Muskrat Bath, Whoops the Ice Melted
Although the ice was thin, the water is very shallow, still the muskrat had to struggle at some points to get up on solid ice.
Muskrat Bath, Upper Arms
The muskrat methodically did each arm, elbow and upper arm. It's possible he is cleaning with his claws, or scratching himself clean.
Muskrat Bath, Part 2
He worked on his elbows a lot. I don't know if they itched or he hurt himslef falling through the ice.
Muskrat Washing His Face
He is definitely cleaning his head here.
Muskrat Bath, Another Little Itch
He has large hind feet and claws that work very well for scratching his sides.
Muskrat on the Ice
My friend, Don Brown, caught sight of this fellow out on the ice. The ice was thin and he kept falling in, but he managed to get up onto pretty solid ice to do his ablutions.
Muskrat Breakfast, At Last
At last, a little breakfast. There was nothing green around, but he seemed content with these dried grasses.
Northern Shovelers Take Off
How electric the colors are for this Northern Shoveler as he takes off in the bright sun.
Tundra Swan on One Leg
This swan stood still for quite some time with one leg tucked under, he was in a small group of ducks and geese, all "hanging" together.
Tundra Swan Foward Flap
It is very difficult to photographically isolate the swans, there are so many of them, and they silently glide away from the viewer. As they are not nesting they are socialable with one another and comfortable with close contact.
Tundra Swan Standing Up, Back Flap
Tundra Swans rest in North Carolina where we have various wild life refuges for them. We get about 60% of all the Tundras and it appears there are about 90,000 individuals on the East coast.
Tundra Swan Wings Forward
The size and power of the swan's wings fascinate me. The wing span is 66.1".
Tundra Swan Wings Back
In the play," Angels in America", the wings of the angel were, I believe, based on those of a swan. The angel was "terrible" in a biblical sense, fierce and beautiful.
Two Tundras in Flight, Back Lit
How gorgeous are these swans? Here they are making their way to a nearby field for grain. It is possible they are a mated pair.
Three Tundra Swans in Flight
The swans sleep on the water and feed in it too, but they also fly to nearby farm fields to feed.
Single Flying Swan
The Tundra flies with it's neck out stretched and legs straight behind it. Taking off and landing it lets its legs drop down.
Small Anchored Boats, Still Water
A little town close to Pocosin Lakes, Englehard, NC, has a tiny bridge and this view of boats at anchor.
The water was so still that I took this mirror image of the boats' masts.
OBX20180328MattamuskeetMattamuskeet_LakeNorth_CarolinaOuter BanksanimalbathingbehaviorconservationicelandscapemammalmuskratwashingwildlifewinterOBX 20180328