Thursday, February 17, 2011

Anchorage Trail

My wife and I decided to take advantage of the beautiful weather we have been having and headed out to Anchorage Trail this past weekend.  Anchorage Trail is a relatively new park in Louisville and it is not to be missed.  The trail has a little bit of everything; open grassy fields, wooded paths, swamps and more.  We parked at the Anchorage Presbyterian Church and followed the path along Evergreen Road that takes you into the park.  Check out the map below.

Anchorage Trail is a great place to go birding, so why not start with the birds?  A lot of the common songbirds were singing and foraging for food.  The highlight was a Golden-crowned Kinglet that I took several photos of, none of which were usable.  You gotta give me a break on this one though, those guys are constantly on the move.  Nevertheless, here are the birds I was able to get pictures of:

Carolina Chickadee
Carolina Chickadee

American Robin
American Robin

White-breasted Nuthatch
White-breasted Nuthatch

There are a couple farm fields that border the park and I noticed a group of Turkey and Black Vultures on the ground eating something.  So I took chase.  Well not really.  They pretty much let me get within 15 feet before they got tired of me and flew off.


You can see below the "something" they were eating were two dead raccoons.

Black Vultures

Black Vulture

Black Vulture

Black Vulture
Black Vulture 

There were bushes with little dark berries on them that I couldn't identify (I'm a bird guy).  They birds were gobbling them up so I made it a point to look them up when I got home.  The best identification I could come up with was Farkleberry (Vaccinium arboreum) a bush in the same genus as Wild Blueberry.


Farkleberry 2

Perhaps my favorite part about the Anchorage Loop is the large grassy field.  The field is a mix of native grasses with several paths going through and around it.  I plan on coming back and finding summer wildflowers and birds.

Grass and Path


Grass 2


As mentioned before, there is a swampy area adjacent to a pond.  There is a nice boardwalk that goes out onto the swamp and I'm sure this area will be a great place for wildflowers and swallows in the next few months.  I saw this gnawed tree, a sign of beavers.

Beaver Sign

Then we found this dam near the boardwalk.

Beaver Dam

The result: flooded swampy woods.



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