Lilac buds

The buds are open on the high branches of the lilacs. Buds are pretty, though!

Working edge

Here’s the working edge of the eradication program. I hope this is the densest spot, but I have to work my way along this edge of the woods to the farthest you can see in this shot. In nearly an hour of digging and hauling, I “cleansed” about 25×25 ft. I see the big broadleaves and think, “broad stems are easy handles, and it’ll go fast.” Nope. First, there are small specimens in between. And, roots make the digging difficult. And I try not to damage the ferns (too much). But, cooler today meant almost no blackflies, although the mosquitoes were not immobilized by the coolness and breeze. Always something.

Sandhill at refuge

After a rest, shower, and lunch, we took the wildlife drive at the refuge. Of course, we saw the big swans and Canada geese, and mallards, and maybe a golden eye. And a brown snake (best I can do—it was moving right along; that’s our second snake since arrival—the first was a copper-bellied water snake, of all things, and in the road…rescued by LaLaurel). We also saw this sandhill crane; neither of us could remember the last time we saw a sandhill at the refuge.

Refuge turtle

And turtles—one shiny-shelled one down by the water on the log, and several more up higher. The water level was rather high in the ponds, except for the one they’d drained. Deeeee-lightful visit.

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