A couple of weekends ago, we were all about to go crazy cooped up in the house. So we left the laundry, unfinished homework and dirty dishes in their respective piles and headed out for nearby Meyer Park. The kids had been there on a field trip before Thanksgiving, and wanted us to go see the "giant beaver things" that were supposedly lurking in the lake there.
Meyer Park is a nice place during the week, rather peaceful with its wide open fields and two calm, quiet ponds. Its small wooded area backs up to Cypress Creek, with short nature trails visiting the creek and looping around to the fishing hole and the duck pond.
But on weekends, the park is overrun by soccer. The fields are filled with refs, teams and supporters. There are kids in every direction. Soccer balls skip and float across the duck pond. And noise permeates the quiet solitude of the tree-lined creek.
As you may then imagine, this particular outing could not really be classified as a birding excursion. Other than the expected waterfowl and the caged doves, we could count the birds we spotted on one hand. With fingers to spare.
We were ably led in our adventure by our intrepid explorer Cowboy and his tireless mountain-climbing associate, Cat.
As the din from the soccer fields followed us down the walking trail, we quickly despaired of seeing any wild birds, although there were a few other critters to see along the way.
The squirrels were out in force, scurrying about as they gathered food for the coming cold season. We spotted a few fleet-footed lizards who barely even noticed our presence. Even the spiders seemed to be too preoccupied with storing up snacks to bother with these noisy weekend invaders.
Just as we reached the creek, we saw the streak of a kingfisher as he flew downstream just above the surface of the water. The only other bird we found was a Blue Jay, squawking at us from high above at the edge of the trees.
Continuing along the circular trail, we came upon a nice, large fishing pond. We detoured to loop around the water's edge, stopping from time to time to look at leaves or to skip rocks across the smooth surface of the lake.
The paved walk around the lake finally led us back to the edge of the soccer fields, through which we zigzagged back to our original starting point at the duck pond.
To be continued...