Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Barred Owl

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Whooping Cranes

Monday, September 21, 2009

More Kansas Butterflies

American Painted Lady on a Sunflower

Silver-spotted Skipper on a Bull Thistle

Another view of a Silver-spotted Skipper

Common Wood Nymph

Eastern Meadow Fritillary

Question Mark Butterfly

Group of Monarchs

Cabbage Butterfly

Clouded Sulphur on Stiff Goldenrod

Group of four Clouded Sulphurs

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Yellow-breasted Chat

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Birding at Milford Lake

Yesterday (September 12th) I went to Milford Lake on a Bird Walk led by a birding friend of mine from Junction City. It rained the night before and was raining off and on during my drive to the lake, however it was dry but cloudy during our outing. We saw several different species of birds and I got to meet up with several of my birding friends from the area, overall a very enjoyable morning.

View of the north end of Milford Lake from the Wakefield Causeway

Milford Lake is the largest man-made lake in the state of Kansas, having 15,709 surface acres of water. The lake was authorized by Congress in 1954, construction by the Army Corps of Engineers began in 1961 and it was completed in 1966. In 1991 the Milford Lake Wetlands Restoration Project began with a goal of improving the wetlands along the Republican River and the upper portions of the lake, the project includes 2300 acres. The lake receives an average of 500,000 visitors a year, who come to fish, boat, camp, and picnic, it's a great place to observe birds in any season.

Great Egret

Ring-billed and Franklin's Gulls at the Wakefield boat launch area

Great Blue Heron

White Pelican

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Late Summer Wildflowers in Kansas

In late Summer and early Fall many wildflower species are in bloom along roadsides, and in pastures and prairies across Kansas. They come in a wide array of colors; white, purple, blue, and yellow and they help add to the beauty of the landscape.

Prairie Blazingstar

Stiff Goldenrod

Blue Sage (Pitcher Sage)


Bull Thistle

Monday, September 7, 2009

Nebraska State Fair in Lincoln 2009

The 2009 edition of the Nebraska State Fair was sort of a bittersweet event as this was the last year for the State Fair in Lincoln, it's being relocated to the central Nebraska city of Grand Island and will be held there beginning next year. In the early years the State Fair was moved between several different cities but in 1901 it was finally given a permanent home in Lincoln and has been held at State Fair Park for 108 years. The University of Nebraska has acquired the fairgrounds and plans to turn it into a Research Park with most of the buildings to be removed or demolished. My family and I have enjoyed attending the fair almost every year for over 40 years, it's only an hour and a half drive from Linn. On Sunday Dad and I made our way to Lincoln to attend the fair one last time, it was nearly perfect weather, and there were large crowds, much bigger than we had seen in a long time. Dad rented a mobility scooter so he could get around the fairgrounds,I walked around taking in the fair and taking lots of pictures. It was a day of mixed emotions, while it was a very enjoyable time on the one hand there were also the feelings you get when you say goodbye to an old friend that you know you won't see anymore, all in all it was a day I'll remember for a very long time.

Ferris Wheels on the Midway

The 4-H Building
This building was dedicated on September 6. 1931 and is one of only four buildings that will remain on the fairgrounds when the University of Nebraska takes over, plans are for the building to be renovated and be a centerpiece of the new campus.

Judging Sheep at the 4-H Arena

The Budweiser Clydesdales were at this years Nebraska State Fair, this is the beer wagon that's pulled by the Clydesdales.

The Best of Show Quilt at the Bob Devaney Center
(click on the pic to see the amazing detail)

Thursday, September 3, 2009


Kansas is known as the Sunflower State and the Sunflower is the state flower, eleven species grow in the state. In late Summer Sunflowers put on a colorful display along roadsides and on waste ground. Farmers in the state grow Sunflowers as a cash crop, usually planting them in wheat stubble in late June after the wheat has been harvested. Sunflower seeds have many uses, they are roasted and eaten, used as birdseed, and also processed into cooking oil which is low in saturated fat and high in Vitamin E.