Dr Marm never without my Nikon!

Puddle to Pond City Park Views

Birds sunning on rocks

Labor Day Weekend was not quite the weekend I had planned.  Got up early on Sunday to go visit The American River Parkway only to realize my yearly park pass had expired on 8/31/10. On Monday, armed with a new pass good until 9/30/11, I headed to William B. Pond Park.  It is only about 20 minutes from my house and am so thankful the Labor Day rafting crowds got me out of my comfort zone and caused me to explore new surroundings.   

There were no maps available when I drove in with my new pass shining from the rear view mirror. So, my exploration began!   

Where does this go?

There were many folks out enjoying our unseasonably cool weather and most had fishing poles!   

I was thrilled when I found a little puddle and wondered what the slapping noise was, so ventured closer.   

The noise drew me closer...

The noise was the sound of Polliwogs frantically swimming at the puddles shallow edge–sadly, the wrong direction for survival.  While I was stooped over, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a fluttering and noticed there were dragonflies zooming around.  They would dart through the reeds chasing one another and finally land on a reed.    

Identification is so welcome.  Checked Flickr and Googled Dragonflies–overwhelming.  Think I need to go back to insect anatomy first, then look again!  Too impatient to post this than spend the time needed to ID. Please forgive me, so appreciate those who have knowledge to share!  Special thanks and acknowledgment for @Bosque_Bill for sharing IDs. Feel fortunate to be part of a community with folks who support one another–kudos and gratitude for helping me learn more about nature! Below, a photo of a Common Whitetail. 

Wind blowing wings

Enjoying the sunshine

Pictured above, a Twelve-Spotted Skimmer, enjoying a break from darting around and teasing me.  I sat down and enjoyed their antics for quite some time.  What a fabulous first experience–fun to shoot, due to the fact, they were moving all about.  

Stable place to rest

Lush along the shore

 Two more views of a Twelve-Spotted Skimmer… 

Wings make an "X"

Tip top of reed

Next, decided to see what birds were enjoying the pond. Canadian Geese were on the other side and on the island.  While these birds…found a place to sun via rocks in the middle of the pond.   

Walking and standing on water!

City-fied and smart

 Clearly, the previous dragon, a Widow Skimmer is adaptable and has learned that the metal “reeds” are much sturdier than the green ones!   

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder"

So thankful my initial voyage caused me to look beyond a puddle in the dry dusty area below the levy and see the beauty beyond.   

I love when you learn as you explore and take photos. I “learned” I would really benefit from a longer lens…used a 70-300mm for these shots and then cropped to bring closer.  Guess I will have to do some research:)  Not too much of a hardship, at all!  My wish list is always growing!


5 responses

  1. These are great, Laura. I don’t know what any of the dragonflies are, but I’ve also seen that blue and brown one. Very nice!

    September 11, 2010 at 8:13 pm

  2. I thought for sure that the dragonfly(?) was going to eat that other little tan colored bug on “Wings Make an X” pic. You mentioned the American River, but that’s a rather long one. What city was this park closest to? Looks like you had a fun outing 🙂

    September 11, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    • The American River portion I frequent is in Fair Oaks and Carmichael, which are by Sacramento. This park is in Carmichael & has a bridge to another park in Rancho Cordova/Sac. Fortunate to live near such beauty:) Thanks for your comment, was fun & will visit again.

      September 11, 2010 at 8:35 pm

  3. Laura, all these are dragonflies. Damselflies are much smaller and typically hold their wings back along their bodies when they perch.

    Here are my IDs. No guarantee they are 100% correct, but should be close.

    Common Whitetail, male

    Twelve-spotted Skimmer, male (difficult angle to see)

    Common Whitetail, male

    Twelve-spotted Skimmer, male

    Twelve-spotted Skimmer, male

    Widow Skimmer, male

    September 11, 2010 at 10:46 pm

  4. Laura, thank you for taking us along on your fabulous adventure. What beautiful sights! All of your scenic photographs are lovely. Wonderful dragonfly shots, too. You were fortunate to see such a wide variety. I have also learned so much from taking photographs. Aren’t we lucky? A joy to view your blog … as always.

    September 12, 2010 at 1:22 am

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