It was the first preserve we walked in this past summer, and therefore it was the first time I saw a lot of new (to me) birds, insects and plants.
It is also the forest preserve district’s native plant farm, supporting the restoration of habitats throughout the county. The greenhouses are right at the entrance, not really open to the public.
Anyway, the Saturday we went, June 9, was sunny. Cloudless. And hot. Very, very hot.
It was probably the worst day of the whole summer to go walking five miles, with nearly no shade.
But – and it is a very big but – it was well worth it!
From the start, it was a good time. Right when we started off, there were birds I didn’t recognize singing and flying around. Once I zoomed in, I could see they were bobolinks, birds I’d not seen live before.
As we went further on, there were birdhouses that I could see had birds sitting on them. The first ones I had to look up later (tree swallows), and the second one I just had to verify (an American bluebird).
A little further on, butterflies were all around, but very difficult to shoot. It was a sulphur of some sort, one of many that I still haven’t definitely identified.
About a mile in, the row of silver trees in the featured photo caught my eye. Just something about the colors made me shoot them.