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Hi, to all--I'm new to this.  Enjoying the observations.  Here's mine:

It must be the relatively warm weather keeping the American Bittern hanging 
out here in Jericho.  I saw one flying away from a small spring-fed pond 
near the Brown's River last month, and could hear it's partner croaking from 
the pond as it left.  On Saturday, I heard the hoarse croaking sound again, 
and spotted it lumbering off, flying northward.  Walking around the pond 
with my dog, I found places where no ice has formed, in a shallow muddy area 
that was well-populated by frogs and snapping turtles in the summer.  On the 
side near the flowing stream, beavers have kept open some thicker ice, and a 
slide-way, made by flat tails, is visible on the snow, leading into the 
stream.

Stephanie Bellomo
Jericho

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