Marsh Madness.

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Of course, at first glance, you thought why is Linda writing about the college hoops frenzy known as “March Madness” … I sure do wish it was the month of March instead of just sliding into the tail end of November.  The weather when I walked this morning was more like January, not November.  When I left the house it was 25 degrees, with a wind chill of 14 degrees and NW winds gusting at 15 mph.

I arrived home after my walk with cheeks as red as my squall jacket.  My boss was out at a meeting so I had a little wiggle room and got six miles walked this morning – push, push, push to the end.

There weren’t many of my little furry friends greeting me along the perimeter path this morning, and I wondered if the blustery weather had them hunkered up in their nests.  Those few squirrels at ground level munched their peanuts, seeming not to care that the wind was whipping through the fur on their tails.  Likewise, the reeds that line the banks of the Ecorse Creek were waving wildly with each breathy gust of wind.

Meandering around the marsh.

This post is about my trip to Council Point Park on Sunday.  That day I lingered as long as I could, not only because I knew my outside tasks awaited me, but also because it was mild … a far cry from Thanksgiving or today’s temps.

I arrived early at the Park since the day’s agenda involved more than just walking, taking a slew of photos, picking through them, then writing a blog post.  No, I had that dreaded yard work to do, plus I wanted to do a post about being peeved about leaves (because I was).

So, I had my ducks in a row …

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… and gave the squirrels some TLC and lots of peanuts, then set about on my six-mile meander.

The first stop was the marshy area.  The reeds and invasive grasses, wheat-colored and long dead since that first hard frost, now just bend in the wind and provide an interesting backdrop along the banks of the Creek.

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The most interesting of the tall skinny grasses is the Phragmites which has large seed heads hanging off each stalk.

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Perhaps I went a tad mad at the marsh

I have a wild imagination, but, if I squint just the right way, I don’t see large seed heads on this invasive wetland plant, but instead I see something resembling squirrel tails – do you see it too?

tail up close.jpg

I know I wanted to snatch one of those seed heads and give it to Stubby, the squirrel who is missing half of his tail.  Winter’s coming and squirrels use their long and furry tails like an umbrella to shield them from the snow.

The marsh may have appeared a little desolate, but I turned the corner and the wider part of the Creek was full of mallards, quacking and splashing away.  I’m sure they were enjoying Sunday’s very brief respite from the wintry temps and there must have been a couple dozen of them playing and paddling away.  This mallard was splashing and riding the waves.

mallard2

I like to watch the ducks that sit on the half-submerged log because it is like they are giving themselves a break from paddling without having to come up onto land.  Unlike the geese or swans, the ducks never come up onto land at this venue.  They do at Elizabeth Park and Heritage Park, and are a delight to watch as they waddle around, but you’ll never see them on land here.

These two ducks were perched on a log making it appear as if they were standing on top of the water.

mallard

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I stood and watched the tranquil scene, camera in hand, but mostly just enjoying the peaceful morning.  Unfortunately, that peace and quiet did not last long because suddenly a flock of Canada geese announced their impending arrival with a series of honks, then splashdowns that sent the ducks and a heron beating a hasty retreat.

Many of the ducks took to the air, and the heron did as well, making his trademark screeching noise, his body a bluish-gray blur as he vamoosed.  After the geese landed, soon there was a parade of geese floating down the middle of the Creek, just like a flotilla of ships, following one another in perfect form.  And now that I’ve teased you with that image, I’ll devote an entire post to them as they really looked spectacular and I took lots of pictures.

About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
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47 Responses to Marsh Madness.

  1. Ann Marie stevens says:

    Dear Miss “March Madness”…………………………………..you do know how to take beautiful pictures……………………..we have no ducks for a long time at our pond and it’s not been frozen over………………………you do have all your ducks in a row that’s for sure

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Well thank you Ann Marie – I am glad you liked them. I wonder where your ducks went if the pond is not frozen? I know you will really like the geese pictures that I’ll make into a post, probably for the weekend. The line of Canada geese, one after the other, was just gorgeous and I got several shots of them on their own as well. This weather this morning was beyond cold this morning! I know you walked too – at least it was dry and no icy patches.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. John says:

    Here is the weather up and down. Yesterday morning about 5:30 we had 12°°F, today now it’s 35°! We have 2 bird pounds in the tivoli park which is not so big. There they have air pumps that make the water not freezing so easily

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      That’s interesting John that they can keep the water from not freezing to accommodate the waterfowl – I like that! Do you think that is where your mallards that you discovered newly hatched back in July went for the Winter? We have stupid weather today as well … very cold this morning, some snow mid-day, then freezing rain, then warmer weather to melt the ice (hopefully)… the weekend will be warmer but rainy … still another saturated Saturday.

      Liked by 1 person

      • John says:

        No, I think they is flying to a lake nearby where I use to shoot birds, but you never know. We have Helge river which is flowing like a snake around the city and in many places in the river there is many different species.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        So it is hard to tell but I am wondering if they will return to the pond where you first saw them – perhaps the mom will return there to build a nest like last year. You’ll have to watch for them next year. We had a little snow today and it has been freezing rain all afternoon and overnight – no walking for me tomorrow morning. It is much too early for this snow and ice stuff to be going on!

        Liked by 1 person

      • John says:

        I think the most of the birds will return, at least the adult birds, I think it’s “theirs” territory.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I’ll look forward to you making more Mallard memories then come Spring John! Bet the ducks you handfed will remember you. (And Mama too.)

        Liked by 1 person

  3. You are posting nice wild grasses too, Linda! 🙂
    Global warming can actually make the weather in the midwest colder during winter months; we will have to get used to it, unfortunately… and to more violent winds.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Tom – After I took all these pictures of the wild grasses, which I think give the marshy area of the Park an interesting and weather-beaten look, Andy Finnegan posted his swamp pictures with the grasses and the heron. So I asked Andy if they were Phragmites as they looked like my pics and he said yes. I posted this, then saw your grasses … it seems they hold a fascination to the three of us. I did get in some burrs (again) and took some pictures of them on my sweatpants but they were blurry. Last Winter I got into a burr patch that was tucked amidst the tall grasses and my gloves and pants were covered and I had a devil of a time pulling them off – had to use tweezers!

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  4. ruthsoaper says:

    I have been thinking about how this fall weather is a lot like last spring – cold – rain – snow – cloudy. Kind of depressing. I definitely see a squirrels tail – Love your ducks in a row. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. lindasschaub says:

    I agree with you Ruth – day after day of gray skies and precip in some form. Today’s weather forecast is a mixed bag … some snow, some freezing rain and transition to a little warmer … soggy Saturday. Dismal indeed! I’m glad you see a squirrel’s tail too … made me smile when I saw it. Those ducks in a row also made my day … then I saw the geese in a row and I must have stood watching them a good 1/2 hour, trying to get a few good shots of them as they made their journey down the middle of the Creek.

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  6. All those little ducks in a row! They really made me smile. 🙂 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sarebear's Writing Spot says:

    I love Mallards. They are so fun to watch. Herons are graceful too and I think of myself as very lucky whenever I see one. Great post once again!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Me too – my late mom collected duck decoys and figurines so they remind me of my mom. I like the herons as well but the one at the Creek is quite skittish and if it sees me coming along, sometimes it ignores me and I can get a picture, but most of the time it bolts and makes this horrible screeching noise as it flies away. Glad you enjoyed the post. I feel/felt badly as I don’t know your name and your site is not active – I Googled your WordPress site name and found you on Twitter. I’m on there too but never post there, just follow the weather and news and a few sites. I wanted to ask if you liked bears as I have collected bears for years but had to stop because there was nowhere to put them anymore. (Small house; many bears!) So, are you Sarah? I like your animal pictures you have posted on Twitter. I see you are a former Canadian from one of your posts – I am too. I’ve lived here for 52 years but am still a Canadian citizen. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sarebear's Writing Spot says:

        I think that must be an old account that my comments are under. You can try searching SarahPrimate as that is the active blog I keep. For some reason it wants to use this one to interact with folks. Yes, that would be me @SarahPrimate or @CheshireCanuck on Twitter. Both accounts are active. Yes, I am from Ontario, Canada and still a Canadian citizen too. I’m 38 and living in WA state right now as I attend university here.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes that is how your comments, and I believe how you followed me, show up as I looked and it said inactive blog when you first followed me.

        I will do as you suggest Sarah. I am from Oakville, Ontario originally. What I have to go through to renew my green card every ten years is mind boggling. I have a B.A. in print journalism and couldn’t find a job and have worked as a legal secretary for decades … I have no discernible fingerprints so I have to get ink prints and have my local police department certify I have not been in any trouble here in my City and then the Department of Homeland Security will okay my new green card. Unbelievable!! And I am the least likely person they should be worried about. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I have to try again as I searched for SarahPrimate in Reader and it didn’t work … I did find you on Twitter. I left a message – here is a post I wrote partly about my trip to Giza and my camel Missouri: https://lindaschaubblog.net/2013/09/25/caleb-asks-guess-what-day-it-is/

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Brrrr! It’s cold where you are! What a lovely, albeit frigid walk! I don’t think I’d make it past the mailbox in those temperatures. 😉 And yes, I see those squirrel tails too!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Oh Sabine, this weather has been frightful – it is way too early for all this weather to be taking place, cold temps as well. We had some snow this morning and freezing rain all day and will be overnight too – I likely won’t leave the house tomorrow morning, even to go out and run the car. I have to run it every day even though it’s on a trickle charger as I don’t drive enough. There have been accidents galore.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I can imagine what driving and even walking must be like! Be safe and stay warm Linda!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thanks Sabine – it was ugly and many car accidents – too early for this type of weather. This morning it was freezing fog and I stayed inside all day … when the fog had lifted, it rained the rest of the day and we will have fog and rain tomorrow until the afternoon. The weather continues to disappoint everyone and I’ve lost track of how many weekends have been marred by rain.

        Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      I’m glad so many people thought it looked like a squirrel’s tail. I like the look of these tall reeds and grasses, then lend a little bit of interest to the otherwise blah Park.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. OMG it does look like a squirrels tail!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Loved your title. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Mackenzie says:

    Lovely photos as always ! It took me a minute to remember what month we are in – hehe! I have never heard a Heron make a noise- they are always so still the few times I have heard them. That’s fascinating to know they make a screeching noise like that!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Laurie says:

    Ha! Linda, you sound like me. Just yesterday I asked my hubby “Is it spring yet?” Winter is not my favorite. Those plants DO look like squirrel tails. I wonder how stubby lost his!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Laurie – it’s terrible that we are already looking forward to Spring and it is not even December yet! I think this year it made more of an impact to me because the weatherman (several of them) had gone on about our El Nino that was coming. They predicted the El Nino in mid Summer and at the time people commented that we deserved it after last Winter that lingere into April and we had 62 inches of snow. Then my favorite meteorologist, a self-proclaimed weather nerd, announced “a chink in the armor” … I couldn’t see an El Nino happening. We’ve had minor accumulations of snow four or five times now. Today we had a quick inch of snow as I was ready to go and walk, then we’ve had freezing rain all afternoon and continuing overnight, so I’m pretty sure I won’t be walking tomorrow morning either. I won’t make my goal for the end of November, but that’s okay since it was just a recent “mini goal” for fun. I will likely get to 1,051 miles walked over the weekend – it will be 54 degrees. I have no words about the weather this year!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Laurie says:

        Keep us posted about your totals. We are supposed to have a fairly warm week next week, but the weekend will be rainy. My Colorado son and his wife have asked us to move out there when we retire, but I could not live somewhere with more winter than we have here.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Your next week weather sounds like our weekend – 54 degrees on Sunday, Now that’s a little crazy. I will post the total and keep on going til year end (making me re-think that decision if I get into a bind the tail end of 2019!) I should finish up Sunday if I walk Saturday … tomorrow will be too dicey with the ice. I’d be tempted to move there for Colorado’s beauty but the snow would turn me off as well.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. susieshy45 says:

    I think I will start a walking target with you when you start the challenge next year. It will at least keep me focused on my goals.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Yes do that Susie and we can compare notes as we go along. I had thought I’d get miles in today and tomorrow and was a excited to think that I could get to my 1,051 miles by the end of November, a whole month earlier, but it didn’t happen. Walked out this morning to snow coming down and slickening up the sidewalk. It put down a quick inch in a matter of minutes, so I ran the car and went back inside. Then we’ve had this freezing rain all day and overnight – many accidents. So, likely tomorrow morning won’t be “walkable” either. We’re having a rainy weekend, but I think, in between the rain and fog, I shall walk. The weather has just been abysmal this entire year. At least the late date on the calendar has made your temps more tolerable Susie?

      Liked by 1 person

      • susieshy45 says:

        Temperatures are tolerable but I dread the day already when we have to give up clear blue skies and wintry sunshine to dusty skies and glaring sunshine- I am hoping that day will not come soon, not least in January. I couldn’t take it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        That’s how I feel about the snow … the cold I’m okay with Susie … it is the snow and ice … we are having January weather already. I hope your dusty dkies hold off til January for you.

        Like

  14. Definitely a squirrels tail…..we have a problem with phragmites here – an invasive species that is hard to control. Loved the ducks but not the weather!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Shelley says:

    LOL – great photos and clever title, and YES I see the squirrel tails too. Your walks in the cold inspire me…maybe I’ll ditch the treadmill one day when it gets above freezing! xx

    Liked by 1 person

  16. vikas kumar says:

    nice post

    Liked by 1 person

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