The Benjamin Park Trail
6 May 2014
We are very fortunate in that the Benjamin Park Trail starts right behind our house and is an area we frequently walk. At certain times of the year it can be very productive for wildlife and wild flowers and we always manage to find something of interest.
One of the earliest butterflies to emerge from hibernation is the Mourning Cloak Nymphalis antiopa and having gone through the severest winter in several decades, I think it was an even more welcome sight than usual for all winter-weary northerners.
No less welcome was this stunning Red Trillium Trillium sessile glowing on the forest floor.
Coltsfoot Tussilago farfara had opened up and this fly wasted no time in seeking nectar.
I think that a Cooper's Hawk Accipiter cooperii or two are permanent residents of the trail, but they are adept at concealment and we were fortunate to see this individual relatively exposed. There is little doubt that the proximity of houses with bird feeders accounts for their presence, for a good supply of prey is readily available.
My most exciting find along this trail has been a nesting pair of Eastern Screech Owls Megascops asio and this will be the subject of my next blog post.