Walking in a park near the James River on spring afternoon, I stopped to see if there might be anything interesting in a large puddle adjacent to a small pond. Sitting, quietly a few feet from the trail was this red toad. It remained so motionless as I photographed it, I began to think it might be a toy frog somebody put there as a joke.
This female cardinal enjoys the sunflower seeds at my backyard bird feeder. I was out taking photos and the feeder was in full sun when I snapped this photo.
This male house finch was busy searching the ground for sunflower seeds under a bird feeder when I captured this image.
This little Yellow Breasted Chat and I met up along a rather unscenic part of a hike. I didn’t have my camera ready when I first spotted the bird but it was gracious enough to hang around and let me snap a few pictures of it. It almost seemed to pose for me a couple of times.
During a hike near the James River, I came across a group of Forster’s Terns flying above a stream. I watched as they floated, effortlessly in the air above the water. After a few seconds they would dive out of view and then come flying back up, circle around, and start over. I assume they were catching small fish but I couldn’t get close enough to be sure. The tern pictured here is hovering in position, waiting to dive.
I was hiking near the James River when I heard a small grunting sound. The trail I was on crossed over a stream and when I looked to my left a group of 4 or 5 river otters were watching me. They clearly wanted to cross the trail I was on and seemed annoyed I was in their way. They stuck around long enough for me to take this photo before swimming back the way they came.
This tufted titmouse is taking a break between trips to a nearby bird feeder. Titmice are quite gregarious and are often found with chickadees. They are always one of the first birds to notice when my feeders have been refilled.
I encountered this brown headed nuthatch in a grove of pine trees along the south shore of the James River. I later learned the James River is the northern edge of their range, which explained why I had never seen one before; I live on the north side of the river.
The white throated sparrow is a shy, colorful little bird with a sweet song. They primarily forage for food on the ground. From above or behind they look like a typical brown sparrow but from the front one can see their namesake white throat patch and the bright yellow patches on their face.
This female downy woodpecker, and some of her friends, frequent my backyard feeder.