Last spring I went with the local Audubon Club to an area rich with migrating birds. There were hundreds of Sandhill Cranes and several other species I'd not seen before. I decided to revisit the area on a beautiful summer evening to see how it'd changed.
Right away, I saw three cranes in the same location as last spring. I was puzzled, however, by why there were three of them. Usually, cranes are in pairs.
Then I got it. It was a juvenile sandhill crane. Its red crown had yet to develop, making it appear almost bald.
I found three more cranes in a nearby green field, and another juvenile trailed behind its parents.
But these juvenile barn swallows were the catch of the evening. I'd not seen this breed before.
These little beauties seemed to know how to pose for the camera.
It wasn't just the birds that made for the lovely evening; it was the whole beautiful, rolling countryside.
As I headed home, the clouds parted just a bit to let in a couple streaks of the setting sun. Perfect!