The Ring-billed gull is one of the most common gulls in New Jersey.  They not only frequent the beaches, but also parking lots and shopping malls inland … wherever they can find a tidbit of food and some water.  I’m a huge fan of gulls.  My family went to the beach in New Jersey every summer when I was little.  For me, there were three indications that we were “almost there”.  One was the first sighting of a gull, the second was the cloud formations as we neared the ocean, and the third was noticing that the soil was sandy.  On this cold January day, what could be better than dreaming of warm days with the gulls at the shore?                                                                                                                                                                      (This image from Cape May, NJ – December 2016)

I’m thankful to whoever left their boat on the shore at the lake because it became the focal point of my photo during yesterday’s snowfall.

It was a crisp 25 degrees and snowing this afternoon at the lake.  Before long, there will be ice fisherman and skaters enjoying winter-time activities on the ice covered water.  In the summer, this beach would be buzzing with swimmers and there would be boats on the water.  Today, I was the only one who ventured out onto the snow covered sand.  I love the solitude of a beach in the winter.

Brewster and Gabriel are always vying for top spot on the cat tree.  They like to snooze in the cradle and keep an eye on the bird and squirrel activity in the yard from their high up perch.  On this day, Gabriel was comfy and minding his own business when Brewster decided that it was his turn to take over the top level.  So, what does Brewster do but take a flying leap from the floor onto the perch (see left photo) … regardless of whether Gabriel was laying there or not.  Who do you think won top spot?  As you can see from the photo on the right … it was Brewster.  He is, after all, the big brother!  Little squirt Gabriel was pushed out to find another place for his morning nap. I love the action shot of Brewster in mid-jump!

Meet Benson.  He is a gorgeous bald eagle that I “met” at a presentation by Bill Streeter of the Delaware Valley Raptor Center, Milford, Pa..  This beautiful creature was shot and rescued from the water by a brave man named “Benson”, thus the eagle was named after him.  Benson is unable to be returned to the wild due to his injuries but he is helping to educate as part of Bill Streeter’s presentation with live birds of prey.

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