Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Yesterday we did Pelican Banding

Yesterday morning we took a little boat ride out to the Pelican Breeding Island out in the Sound. It was an almost perfect day to go out to an Island and do some Pelican Banding.

The day started out a little cloudy and there was a nice breeze and as we got off the boat we started to upset the Pelicans because they sensed we were going to come into the nesting area. This was the second trip out to the Island in a three week time frame.

As we moved onshore more birds started to leave. It was interesting to see all the Adult birds leave and settle in just off the Beach and wait for us to finish our work.

These young Pelicans are still flightless and are really large. The nests are just some sticks piled up on the ground or on a short  bush with the branches crushed down.

There were hundreds of these guys and we managed to Band 569 of these Juveniles and it was just awesome.

It was a good day. They are really so soft and once you pick them up they really don't struggle much. Their only defense is if they have just feed they bring up their last meal on you which is all small partly digested fish.

This poor baby is only about 3 weeks old and he just hung there and it seemed so sad.

Lauren deals with a Baby that did not want to be picked up and be Banded but once she had his Beak and wings he just came along.

These guys are from a week to two days old. We found several nests like this and we were told that even the little one will make it. They just so cute and kind of reminded us of little Pterodactyls . It was a great day for us and there maybe another trip in a few weeks to get a few more of the new little ones Banded. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

We were fishing yesterday and the Willets were every where ,running up and down the beach in the surf. They would pick all sorts of small critters and just swallow them down.

The Pelicans are always flying back and forth as they fish along the coast line.

The fish were biting but I was not catching. Only one Skate and he was only about 18 inches . Lauren did some Reiki on him and I put him back in the surf.

We got to watch the Dolphin most of the time we were there. They had schooled up some fish and they just went back and forth always just far enough away to keep away from the beach and the fish away from my hooks.

The Pelicans and an area closed off as there is a Turtle nest in between the poles. The nest is real close to where we are parked we hope to see them hatch out.
Some of the Marsh and Swamp Mallows in bloom behind the Pea Island visitor Center.

One of the many Osprey nests in the area and the little ones are getting ready to leave the nest.

All the Crape Myrtles are in bloom on Roanoke Island and we see them every time we go to the Main Visitor Center.

This little guy challenged me the other day when I went out side of the RV to do some clean up.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

On the beach

The Beach after the Hurricane has a bit more debris on it now , the wind and the storm tide brought in a lot of sea grass and drift wood.

The Ghost Crabs love the grass and always seem to find something to eat in it.

Of course in the scheme of things the grass brings out the crabs and the crabs bring out the Gulls. The little guy put up an heroic fight, it was something to watch as the crab used his claws and fought for his life.

To no avail the Gull was to much for him.

And the Gull swallows his prize.

With the Gulls on the prowl the little crabs find ways to hide and still have a meal from the sea grass.
Last Mondays sunset.

We went for a ride down towards Hatteras on Monday and they are still cleaning up hurricane debris . There were huge piles of every thing on the road side and they were using huge track mounted shovels to fill the 30 yard dumpster trucks as they went. They would stop the traffic for 15 minutes at a time to allow the machines to swing out over the road to do their job.

As we drove along the road we saw miles of sea grass that had washed up onto the road. When we went through the National Park we were amazed at the miles of grass that covered the road and how high the water had risen form the Sound Side.

This fence was a real reminder as to how high the water came. The Sea Grass caught in it shows that if those vehicles had been their they would have been submerged.

I would hate to have been the contractor boss who made the decision to leave a crane with a hundred foot boom standing on sand in the new inlet area as they try to build a bridge across it. The inlet filled with water once again and the shoring they had under the unit just gave way. They brought in a smaller crane to take the large one apart.

A tricky pick alongside of the high power lines. The lines were turned off during the storm to minimize the damage to them but now they are once again powered.

As the water ripped through the area it also washed away all the Turtle nests and Turn nests that were in the area. How sad that they also were victims of the storm .

Bodie Island Light House from the NPS Marina .

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Hurricane

     Just a few word on the Hurricane Arthur Evacuation. We did spent the night doing a little rocking and rolling during the main part of the storm but we suffered no damage and have already moved back to the Beach RV Pads. The site we had moved to did lose power around 2 AM and when we left at 3 this after noon he electricity still hadn't been restored  so we were happy to move back. There was very little damage on the beach side and other than Ocracoke Island all is well here. The Bonner Bridge is still closed on 12 south and will be inspected Saturday. So until then we are just enjoying the time off.                                         G

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Well today we got in some beach time after we moved the RV to Alligator River as the mandatory evacuation order came out and so we just did what was necessary and now we wait for the storm to arrive. We are now 25 miles from the coast and should be OK. They expect the storm surge to happen at mean high tide with the Moon Tide all working to make for some pretty good flooding for a short period. The Park Service and Fish & Wildlife are both shut down for the next two days and maybe more  if the storm washes out one of the bridges or parts of route 12. We shall see what Arthur deals us here.

Just looking for some Cheese Doodles.

A few Brown Pelicans just passing by.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Hurricane Arthur on the 4th

        Well today the Park service came around and gave us the 48 hour warning that we may have to leave the Bodie Island RV Pads if the evacuation order comes out Thursday Morning. If that happens we will move inland for a day and then come back to the Pads if there is no damage. The Ranger said that during Sandy the RV Pads were under water for a couple of days. As usual the Weather channel is dancing on air as they have some bad weather to report. So far NOA and the local stations are taking a different look at the storm but we decided to be ready to go if it does become a Cat 1 or 2. Better safe than rocking and rolling , we did that once here 4 years ago and got cut off down in Hatteras for a couple of days. It was an interesting 12 hours that we don't need to do again if we don't have to. It is a shame as Coleen is with us for the week and the weather has been just awesome so far and she was looking forward to some more Sun Burn and being tumbled in the Surf a few more times. Oh well this is life on a Sand Bar. It's awesome staying on the Beach and it will be just a minor glitch in our stay here. We really love Volunteering at Pea Island and everyone here is just so easy to work with and the people passing through the Visitor Center are for the most part just so pleasant as they are all on Vacation. The storm will put a damper on the 4th here but no storm can stop the exhilaration of the day as we once again we celebrate the Birth of the Greatest Nation this Earth has ever seen. The only regret we have this year is that we won't be doing a 4th of July program like we did last year in Jackson , WY. The float we built and the parade was just some thing to see , when the whole town turned out and most of the visitors did too. The town has 7,000 full time residents and an influx of around 50,000 visitors during their short summer season. When you have a five mile parade route and the people are 10 deep on each side of the road for the whole route you really feel good about the day and it reaffirms  my hope for our nation.  We do get to meet a lot of Retired Military in the course of running the Visitor Center and it makes us feel good to see them enjoying our little part of our Beautiful  Nation .     We give our most Respectful and Heartfelt thanks to all our Veterans on this upcoming day, please enjoy yourself and have a great day.             G

Yesterday and today

Another beautiful Sunset and then again we are now getting ready for some weather.

The fishing wasn't  to good but then again there are no bad days of fishing. Some are just better than others.

It's always the same, take a picture of someone taking a picture. But you have to love the day. warm water and plenty of sun.

We had a great day with the ghost Crabs. Lauren was feeding them and they  hung around us all day.

Lauren having a hoot feeding the Laughing Gulls some Cheese Doodle. the poor guys would eat a few and then go for a drink to help get hem down.
We had birds everywhere for a bit and then we ran out of bird feed, as you can see it was not the best bird food but who can say , they hang around in fast food parking lots.

A happy smile .