All the birds, except for the Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus), were foraging for food. The Dark-eyed Juncos (Junco hyemalis) were looking under leaves on the forest floor. The Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus) and the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius) were searching for their food opportunities on the trunks of trees. The Blue-headed Vireo (Vireo solitarius) was inspecting every dried, curled leaf in hopes of finding a delicious cocoon resident. The Pine Warbler (Dendroica pinus) was sticking its bill in crevices between the vine and the tree trunk. Finally, the Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) pair appeared to be in search of berries, but they'll need to be quicker than the American Robins.
The Carolina Wren was carefully selecting bits of dead leaves from the forest floor. We're not sure what qualifies as suitable nesting material, but several bits of leaves were picked up and then discarded. The leaf bits that made the cut did not appear any different than those that were deemed inferior.
Here are the bird images in not particular order:
Later, we saw the Eastern Cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus piscivorus) at the swamp's edge. As it was not sunny or particularly warm, it is odd for the snake to be out and exposed. It is possible that this snake selected a winter den that has gone under the water with recent rain. Note the caterpillar under the snake's eye. We think these are all signs that the Pennsylvania groundhog got it wrong and winter will end sooner than predicted!
Finally, we spotted this Bobcat (Lynx rufus) resting under a leaning tree. Not really...it's the cat that was taken to the taxidermist years ago after being hit by a car. However, we needed a bobcat image for the Francis Beidler Forest boardwalk-specific iPhone/iPod Touch app that we will be sending to Apple for approval next week. Once approved, the app will be available for free at iTunes.