After a brief summer rain shower, it was back to the pond to see what new arrivals had appeared.
Mother Mallard was back with her now eight ducklings (there had been nine - uh-oh) and of course, there was the muskrat patrol. And then out of the rushes, swam a beaver, the first time I had seen one so close since Spring.
Now that the pond superhighway is open, allowing for complete access to the entire pond areas, there are ample food & supplies for the beaver family, without having to make treks out of the safety of the water. If a beaver did decide to take to ground for some grooming or dam repairs, the marsh reeds & grasses are so tall now they would be well hidden from sight.
Three more beavers eventually swam through, each exiting in the same direction but one particular beaver turned, swam back and did a swim by and appeared to be checking out the "strange object" on the shore. I believe these four beavers to be the offspring of various ages of the two adults, as they had not yet reached their full potential size wise (Photo #5 through Photo #8).
As I spend some hours just sitting at the edge of ponds, waiting & watching for wildlife and potential photographic opportunities, the regular inhabitants, I believe, have come to view me as just part of the background of pond life as long as I maintain a low profile. Sometimes, however, that profile may be a bit too low key. I have on a number of occasions had to duck for low flying Yellow-headed Blackbird youngsters acting out sibling rivalry.
So as this one beaver swam by, I caught him/her in a blink or was that perhaps a wink between pond inhabitant & pond visitor?? :) :) (Photo #1 through Photo #4) And that blink was highlighted by a ring of white fur circling each eye!