“Mallards, Mergansers and Swans: a morning on Maple Bay”

Posted by Pat Leavy on Friday, May 5th, 2017 at 9:35am.


                For a soft spring morning on Burt Lake, one often finds time, no, makes time to enjoy the silence of the water while paddling a kayak, and there’s no place better than Maple Bay. Only a few hundred yards from the fine trimmed lawns and blossoming gardens, an Audubon delight awaits.

                Today it was a pair of mergansers swimming around a lone mallard drake. Further down among the reeds, nesting swans sat cautiously as an eagle glided overhead. A glance down from the kayak into the crystal-clear waters found a painted turtle, hovering below, and looking up as if to say, “Good Morning!” We watched each other as blue jays and flickers cajoled above the treetops.

                The breezes swished by painting whitecaps on the ripples, then all would calm allowing the sun to warm. Upon entering the marshes, a paddling group of blackducks burst into the air showing their consternation for the interruption. A few yards farther, a gaggle of geese glanced over, then ignored the clatter, only to honk their disapproval minutes later as they flew over the open water.

                Alas, hunger beckoned a call for Brutus Camp Deli, and I finished with a bike ride around the Maple Bay Campground and surrounding neighborhoods. Garden trucks dotted the driveways and dogs watched as I pedaled alone on the quiet roads.

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