One of the last things I did in March was to visit Spring Valley Nature Center in Schaumburg. I stopped on the way to visit the elk in Elk Grove Village and while I was there, almost stumbled over a nest of garter snakes.
When I arrived at Spring Valley the sun was shining although it was rather chilly, and one of the first things I noticed was that it looked as though they had been burning off some of the old growth in the field.
The smell of burning was quite strong so I figured it must have happened recently and I wondered what the chances of spotting any wildlife in the area would be. No worries! I got a nice close-up view of a water rat over by the pond.
And a little bit further along the bank I spotted this creature (not sure exactly what it was, and would welcome any suggestions.) It was very skittish and didn’t keep still for long so I was only able to get a quick shot.
Meanwhile, over at the farm, the horses and cows were enjoying the sunshine.
I was right about the controlled burning. As I was returning to the parking lot I spotted smoke rising from the far side of the trail and, hurrying in that direction, I managed to capture the last of the day’s work.
It’s rather scary to see how rapidly the fire spreads but with the experts on hand to keep things under control I felt quite safe and the fire quickly went from a raging inferno to a few wisps of smoke and some dying flames.
So with that, I said goodbye to March and today it’s Hello April. With not much sun and chilly temperatures in the forecast for the coming week I don’t anticipate doing much in the way of photography for the next few days. But there are signs of hope in the garden. Just a few colorful crocus shivering in a cold wind. Come on April! Let’s see what you can do!
Thanks for choosing this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, Amy!