Great Egret

Great Egret

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Merry Christmas!

Christmas...certainly a busier time of year for most, if not all. Anticipated by many, and for various reasons, dreaded by some.

Winter has just begun, officially, but one would never know it looking outside here in southwestern Ontario, and a lot of other places. These next few images are what we have come to expect especially over the last couple of years when winter has been rather....wintry!
East beach of Rondeau
Bennett Ave slough after a fresh light snowfall
Bennett Ave slough in the depths of winter
Instead, at least for the next few weeks, according to the weather prognosticators, we will likely be faced with the landscape looking like this next image. Of course much of the world experiences snow-free conditions at Christmas.
Harrison Trail
So without wintry Christmas scenes to photograph right now, I will post some colours that often are used to represent the season.
This image above isn't the normal holly that one associates with Christmas, but it is a member of the Holly family and occurs in small quantities at Rondeau and many other locations. It is Winterberry (Ilex verticillata).

This next image also shows the green and red combination, albeit a little more muted, and with some gray mixed in. It is a Pyrrhuloxia, a typical denizen of the extreme southwest in Arizona. But showed up at a feeder at Eagle in nearby Elgin County during the latter part of December, 2004 and first part of January, 2005. Given all the western and southwestern birds to show up in Ontario these last few weeks, maybe a Pyrrhuloxia is next!
I think most birders in Ontario are happy, and a lot more likely, to see a Snowy Owl. This has been another good year so far for this arctic visitor. I photographed this one on Wednesday, December 23, along the rural roads of Chatham-Kent near.....nowhere, but south of Wallaceburg and east of Mitchell's Bay. This is the whitest one I've seen so far this year.
Snowy Owl
So this Christmas, I hope you will maybe find time to see a full moon if the weather permits.
I also hope you will be able to enjoy time this season with family and friends, and even get out to explore the wonderful creation that most readers of this blog appreciate.

Most of all, however, I hope you consider the real purpose and message of Christmas, which is the birth of Jesus. And amidst all of the chaos and uncertainty in the world that we read about every day, please pray for peace on earth.

Merry Christmas to all!


  1. Merry Christmas!
    The weather is more like March, but we will make the best of it.

    1. Thanks, Blake, and you are right.....we can't do much about the weather so might as well make the best of it!

  2. Merry Christmas to you & Marie, Tim and Kristen!


    1. Thanks, Deb. I hope you, Jan and Xavier have a wonderful time.

  3. Allen, Merry Christmas to you and yours! - Dwayne