What a simply amazing day I had out at the marsh! I took a different route and it was like being in a whole new place. Those trails have really grown up (as have I) since I walked them maybe three or more years ago. It was sunny and bright, I used my camera's sunshade to great advantage. I Wish I'd applied sunblock to my shoulders, by the end of the walk they matched my shirt... bright red.
The trails smelled sweet and it seemed like everything was in bloom. I checked all the bladderpod I passed for good shots of those handsome little Harlequin Beetles. I passed a few couples on the trails, but was mostly left alone. I was glad for the peaceful and tranquil time. I crossed paths with a Mourning Cloak that allowed me to take simply stunning shots of him, and even landed on my hat to bask in the sun.
I got a unique view of a Western Fence Lizard and played with shots of a crow in odd lighting, you'll have to tell me what you all think of that one. A gorgeous Snowy Egret in full breeding plumage allowed me the most amazing views I've seen, stalking and spearing small fish and ignorning my presence. Young Tree Swallows were making shaky first attempts at airborne acrobatics and doing pretty well. I got photos of a young one poking out of the nest box, as well as a watchful mother with a brood patch showing.
As left I walked out along the creek and got some photos of the Cliff Swallow nests and peer wistfully into the barb-wired off area across Mac Arthur from the Marsh. I doubt it's open to the public but it was teeming with good birds and possible photographs... perhaps someday I'll figure out a way to bird it. I stopped by the UCI Arboretum for the first time, but it's closed sundays so I think I'll go back tomorrow. It looks promising, and perhaps I can get to the place I saw from in there. Hmm.