November 8, 2009
November had some good days in the beginning of the month. Sunday, November 8, was an exceptionally warm and sunny day this year. I drove to the south end of the levee and walked to the first bend, about a mile, before turning back to the car. It gave me a great opportunity to observe the wetland forming around the channel that would lead to the Spoon River system if it weren't for the levee upon which I stood.
On the other side of the levee lies the bottom forest that surrounds the Spoon River on the Emiquon National Wildlife Refuge, providing a great contrast.
The day was so clear that I could see the two towers on the bluff at Little America from the levee.
A small group of American White Pelicans sat on a finger of higher ground like whipped cream on a sliver of pumpkin pie.
I found Horned Grebes, the first time I've identified this species. They were swimming with American Coots and Pied-billed Grebes in the channel of water threading its way through the wet prairie.
A Monarch butterfly landed briefly before flying off over the trees at the refuge.
A female Northern Harrier hunted the wet prairie as I walked back to the car.