Wednesday, 10 April 2019

The dock, fishpond, frogpond, and the ducks

That was a storm. We interrupt this post for storm news. We had freezing rain, snow, ice pellets, which is a terrible combination. By the storm moved northeast, to our neighbouring province of Quebec, it got worse in the colder temperatures. There were 300,000 without power in Quebec yesterday. Still some 100,000 without power today.
Ottawa had over 100 crashes during the day. Things were a mess of ice and snow.

It's cold. We're out of wood, and have been buying it by the bundle. It's a lovely package. Well-wrapped, including a handle, and made by a local company in Richmond, Ontario. It includes a few pieces of kindling, as well as a little nest of shredded wood, infused with paraffin wax, as a starter. It gets us through a weekend of curling! We have propane heat, but the fire in the basement for TV watching is wonderful. Besides that, I was afraid of a power outage, and so I started a fire.


Hardwood Bundles

Kindlebits firestarters

Here, we had a couple cm of snow on top of the ice pellets and rain. It transitioned to snow when it got cold. Then, the precipitation stuck to the trees.
ice pellets from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

The sad-looking bird bath froze, again. I was unhooked by raccoons or deer. It's going to have to be replaced this year. It's cracked all to heck.

Yesterday, then today. <SIGH>

It was a beautiful sunrise! The sun's rays reflecting off of the ice crystals.

OK, back to my post. The goldfish pond has been hooked back up to the water barrel and drain spout. I undo it over winter, directed it back into the drain. Good thing, as we've had rain. It will give the pond some fresh water.

Soon it will look like this! OK, not 'soon' but eventually. I have hopes.

Down at the frogpond things are hopping. It looked fairly frozen from the path. Hooper and I walked down, one duck quacked and circled the pond, but chose not to land. A pair took off as we walked.

The south-facing shoreline has begun to melt. I had prepared the nesting boxes last month, and I'm glad I did. The trailcam was set up to see the birds, and this is the wood duck male. I cut out the date stamp on the image, as I'd forgotten to check the date after I'd replaced the batteries. It told me this was from Jan. 4th, 2017, and buried the photo by date in my photo files.
He's made a nice round impression in the box. I'm not sure how much they are involved in the nest box, but one of them has been in here. Soon we'll here the delightful screams of the ducks as mating season begins.

The trailcam had been set to video the next day. It's fun seeing them move, but they are so fast, and 'video' uses up a lot of battery juice.
Wood ducks from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

Hooper and I walked around the pond and a male mallard arrived.
Mallard duck from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

I went down to the pond to try and raise the dock. It wasn't pretty. It was darn cold, too. I forgot the cardinal rule, as well. Visit the bathroom before you suit up. I managed to carry on, loosening the bolts with my big wrench, in the frozen water to let the dock float on top of the water and get some more height.  I was using a large stick to prop the dock higher, but it broke, and it broke me. I'm going to have to go back down and tighten the nuts. The chest waders are really necessary.

Blog buddies continue to inspire me. I created a stir-fry using brussel sprouts, red pepper, mushrooms, onion, cherry tomatoes. I added hot sauce, but it was a bit sharp. Then, I added some BBQ sauce, it was a bit sweet. Then, I added some ketchup. Perfect. Whew. 

In the meantime, we are buying local meat and cooking it thoroughly. I am vigilant about handwashing, and not contaminating surfaces. They don't know what has caused the salmonella outbreaks, but we avoid processed foods.

OK, my day starts now!

I am reminded of our Eddie and Eva story of April 4th, 2009.
"It's your fault"


Anvilcloud said...

I had to pause a little at that sunrise photo.

Nancy J said...

Maybe the real spring will arrive soon, pity about the bird bath. Bundles of wood, they are SO expensive down here. And I did a Google search, seems like it's a huge business in Canada. Maybe easier to stack than a huge trailer of logs. Our little shed is almost full with 2 cords, I can see me setting out some for each day, carefully allocated as there isn't any room to stack more!!

Christine said...

Everything is coming to life! The stir fry looks good!

William Kendall said...

It would seem the mallard might have noticed Hooper.

Red said...

That's very nasty weather to put up with.

Karen said...

This late spring is pretty frustrating isn't it? We still have about two feet of snow and our car is stuck in the slush/mud again. Hopefully tomorrow we can get it out as it's going down to -9 tonight.
Our basement wood room is EMPTY and the spring/fall wood in the shed is almost done. We'd hate to be burning oak at this time of year.