common coot

An industrious builder of nests that I observed on visits to Delph and Amsterdam.

Below are two videos of what I assume is the male delivering building material to the nesting female to construct their nest. The first is from Delph and the second from Amsterdam .

Grizzly Bear

A Brown Bear in Brooks River near Brooks Falls

A Few Facts About Katmai National Park:

Katmai National Park and Preserve is located at the head of the Alaska Peninsula approximately 290 air miles southwest of Anchorage. It includes over 4 million acres of land and water and is roughly bounded by Shelikof Strait to the east, the Lake Iliamna watershed to the north, the Bristol Bay coastal plain to the west, and the Becharof Lake watershed to the south. The area was originally established as a national monument in 1918 to preserve geological features related to the 06 June 1912 eruptions of Mt. Katmai and Novarupta volcano. The Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act of 1980 added land and redesignated the area as a national park and preserve. The implementing language stated that the area was “to be managed for the following purposes, among others: To protect habitats for , and populations of, fish and wildlife, including, but not limited to, high concentrations of brown / grizzly bears and their denning areas; to maintain unimpaired the water habitat for significant salmon populations; and to protect scenic, geological, cultural and recreational features.”

A Short Video from Margot Creek in Katmai National Park:

A mother and her two cubs

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One of the cubs about 2 years old            The mother about 900 pounds

A Few Words about the Wildlife of Katmai National Park:

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Among all this diversity, Katmai National Park and Preserve is famous for its brown bears and fish populations. Bristol Bay streams, including the Naknek River, are the source of some of the world’s largest salmon runs and appear to have been so for about the last 4000 years.

Trophy-size game fish such as trout inhabit many of the park and preserve streams. The bear come to feed on the fish, sometimes in unusually large concentrations. There is a migratory caribou herd and it appears that in the past there was a more regular presence – enough so that hunting caribou was a regular aboriginal activity. Overall, Katmai National Park and Preserve contains at least 29 species of land animals, 6 of sea mammals, 150 species of birds, and 28 of fish, as well as uncounted intertidal and coastal species.

Katmai’s lake edges and marches serve as nesting sites for tundra swans, ducks, loons, grebes, and that 20,000-mile annual commuter, the arctic tern. Sea birds abound along the coast, grouse and ptarmigan inhabit the uplands, and some 40 songbird species summer at the park. Seacoast rock pinnacles and treetops along the lake shore provide nesting sites for bald eagles, hawks, falcons, and owls. Brown bears and moose live throughout the coastal and lake regions, the moose feeding on willows, water plants, and grasses. Other mammals include the caribou, red fox, wolf, lynx, wolverine, river otter, mink, marten, weasel, porcupine, snowshoe hare, red squirrel, and beaver. Along the coast line are sea lions, sea otters, and hail seals, with beluga, killer, and gray whales sometimes using the Shelikof Strait.

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boqueriaBoqueria Market—Barcelona’s most spectacular food market, also known as the Mercat de Sant Josep, is an explosion of life and color sprinkled with delicious little bar-restaurants. Set within a steel hangar, the market occupies a neoclassical square built in 1840 by architect Francesc Daniel Molina. A visit to the Mercat de la Boqueria in Barcelona is advisable to enjoy an incredible contrast between colors and activity, ideal to discover why Mediterranean cuisine is internationally known due to its ingredients. The best products from Catalonia in one place.

Boqueria

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Boqueria

Boqueria

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assisi1.jpgI was in Assisi during the 750th anniversary of the Basilica of St Francis of Assisi. Saint Francis of Assisi was a Roman Catholic Monk Born in 1182 and the founder of the Order of the Friars Minor , more commonly known as the Franciscans.

An anecdote:

Many of the stories that surround the life of St Francis deal with his love for animals. Perhaps the most famous incident that illustrates the Saint’s humility towards nature is recounted in the Vigina (The Little Flowers), a collection of legends and folk-lore that sprang up after the saint’s death. It is said that one day while Francis was traveling with some companions they happened upon a place in the road where birds filled the trees on either side. Francis told his companions to “wait for me while I go to preach to my sisters the birds.” The birds surrounded him, drawn by the power of his voice, and not one of them flew away. Francis spoke to them:

“My sister birds, you owe much to God, and you must always and in everyplace give praise to Him; for He has given you freedom to wing through the sky and He has clothed you…you neither sow nor reap, and God feeds you and gives you rivers and fountains for your thirst, and mountains and valleys for shelter, and tall trees for your nests. And although you neither know how to spin or weave, God dresses you and your children, for the Creator loves you greatly and He blesses you abundantly. Therefore… always seek to praise God.”

Amateur Radio

I spent many hours in my youth communicating with like minded individuals with my amateur (Ham) radio station. I still have an active license but I’ve been inactive for a number of years. My call sign is WB2NCI.