This year we have done a phenology study for CISMA on some invasive plant species in our county. I have driven by and stopped to look at this clump of Teasel at least once per month. This small clump is one of several plants that make up a whole colony of Teasel along this fence line.
The extraordinary thing about this clump is that a Red-winged Blackbird had it's nest in this plant and I didn't notice it one time during summer. Yet when we stopped to see this colony of teasel this month after all has been frozen I could see this neat structure of a home.
Red-winged Blackbird is a ubiquitous summer nester in these parts. Most people ignore them either because they are so prevalent or they don't sport the more colorful features of other birds. I have always loved them since you can count on them being the harbingers of spring as the males swoop in from their Southern wintering areas to claim their territories in February. Sitting along the fence lines throwing their red epaultes singing that song that the females are attracted to. Then soon after the females clothed in their best camouflage move in . They work hard to knit these nests and raise their young.
With all that I don't have a good picture of a Red-wing. They are very leery of humans. Who can blame them? If you don't know this handsome blackbird you can go here to see them.
I can't help but think of spring this morning as our area is blanketed with fog and the Carolina Wrens are singing. I hope you all have a great weekend.