VFFN visit Allison Lake

Vermilion Forks Field Naturalists enjoyed a record turnout for our field trip to Allison Lake on May 31.

A small bird’s nest tucked into the grass beside the trail. Complete with two blue-speckled eggs

A small bird’s nest tucked into the grass beside the trail. Complete with two blue-speckled eggs

Twenty-one of us, led by Trish Reid, took advantage of the ideal weather to meander along the trail on the west side of the lake for close to three hours. We took our time as there was much to observe, with a profusion of colourful wildflowers and melodious bird calls to tantalize our senses. We came across golden meadows of arnica growing alongside scarlet paintbrush plants, competing for attention with their showy brilliance. Purple penstemon caught our eyes, as did a Solomon’s Seal, a few precious Chocolate lilies and a lovely ladyslipper. We noted a prevalence of kinnikinnick, and some of us sampled leaves of the plentiful soopolallie. The lake itself was calm, mirroring the surrounding greenery, while a pair of loons quietly swam by, rippling the surface only slightly. We heard the trills of a veery and Western tanager, while an osprey swooped overhead several times. Our best find, however, was a small bird’s nest tucked into the grass beside the trail. Complete with two blue-speckled eggs, its absentee owner was identified as a dark-eyed junco. This delightful walk ended at Trish’s home, where she spoiled us with cake and beverages.

Our next field trip will take place on Saturday, June 14, when Tip Anderson will lead us on an easy walk through Dalby Meadows. Phone 295-3369 to confirm and meet at Billy’s at 9 a.m. Our next meeting will be held at Riverside Centre on Tuesday, June 10, at 7 p.m., and will feature guest speaker Lauren MacFarland, who will provide a presentation on Lewis’ woodpeckers.

Please note this will be our last meeting until September, but field trips will continue throughout the summer. We welcome all to our meetings and field trips – please join us for a stimulating and sociable time!