Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Boats and Birds

Well folks, as you probably know I am spending yet another summer of my life chasing around good ol' Charadrius melodus, aka the Piping Plover.

My hand and the Piping Plover that just flew out of it

I am once again stationed in Vermillion, South Dakota for the summer. This year, however, the Mighty Mo is not flooded, and we are getting tons of work done on our stretch of river below the Gavin's Point Dam in Yankton, SD. Of course I have not forgotten about my beloved Niobrara River in Nebraska, and I visit her once a week (ish). I like driving our skiff, but I think paddling will always be my preferred mode of transportation.

Things started off slow this year; the birds seemed to take their sweet time returning from their wintering grounds in the Gulf of Mexico and on the Atlantic Coast. Once they got here they wasted no time getting eggs on the ground. We had our first chicks hatch last Saturday and they've been popping up all over the place since then. It is quite difficult to focus on work when you have adorable baby plover chicks all over the place...

This nest hatched today.. well, most of it did anyway

Other than all the birdy business.. things have been pretty quiet around here. I am missing the ocean quite a bit these days but trying to convince myself that the River is an acceptable alternative. I miss everyone back home, but I am surrounded by lots of good friends out here to keep me busy.

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