Medicinal Plant Creek

Okay, let’s face it. Translating from one language to another can be a tricky thing. According to my research, the location I tramped around in, Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands, is from the Muscogee (Creek) Native American language and means “Medicinal Plant” Creek Wetlands. I highly prefer the original. It’s rhythmic, takes effort to pronounce and reminds me of a very old children’s song having to do with a soda cracker. And I didn’t find any medicinal plants, either.

What I did find was an abundance of life! Flowers were showing off their spring beauty. Tall pines and stately oaks mixed with bay, laurel, hickory and other tree species. Small mammal footprints in the mud were like a mini-census: raccoon, squirrel, opossum, white-tailed deer and otter. Tall grass pressed flat formed “slides” around the shoreline where alligators entered and left the water. A plethora of insects thrive in the wet environment. An Eastern Black Racer (a magnificent snake species for those unfamiliar) enjoyed one of those insects before “racing” off the path as I approached. Did I mention the birds?

The man-made impoundment includes areas of open water with varying depths to attract a diversity of water birds. Plantings of erosion-protecting and filtering vegetation helps insure the water remains clean and the area stable. With a relatively dense area of tall-growing plants throughout the wetlands, many birds feel comfortable nesting here. I found a family of Sandhill Cranes, new Common Gallinule chicks, Osprey catching fish and returning to a nearby nest to feed two young fish hawks and young Black-crowned Night Herons roosting on an island.

No matter how you pronounce it, Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands is a wonderful place to explore any day! (It doesn’t hurt that it’s only 15 minutes from the house, either.)

Yes, there are a few pictures of the morning slog. 

Fairly new Sandhill Crane chicks are almost independent but still don’t stray too far from Mom and Dad.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands 

 

A pair of American Kestrels have taken up residence in the wetlands. Hope I can get photos of some new chicks soon!

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

An adult Black-crowned Night Heron passed nearby grunting his displeasure at my presence.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

Spring in the wetlands means plenty of Red-winged Blackbirds singing from atop trees. This guy was singing “Moonlight Sonata”. No. Really. He was.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

Thistle flowers are so beautiful to observe yet so painful to touch.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

Not wishing to be outdone by a blackbird, a Limpkin tries serenading his love from atop a skinny tree branch. Two lessons learned: those big claws are more comfortable on solid ground and there is no way a Limpkin’s call could be confused with a serenade.  (Limpkin “Serenade”)

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

An Osprey scans the water below for a fresh fish breakfast which will be shared by two young chicks in a nearby nest.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

The morning sun shows off some of the iridescence in the plumage of a Glossy Ibis.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

Wood Ducks love the many places they can hide within the wetlands’ tall grasses and reeds.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

A Common Grackle harasses a Swallow-tailed Kite. The grackle was no match for the flying skills of the kite, which flew a couple of circles around the attacker and dove toward the ground suddenly leaving the poor grackle alone in the sky.

Itchepackesassa Creek Wetlands

 

This is a wonderful spot for a morning walk and always yields a diversity of life at which one can marvel. We hope you have a place near where you live which offers a respite from the ordinary.

 

Enjoy your search for a natural place and come back for a visit!

Categories: Birds, Florida, Photography, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

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12 thoughts on “Medicinal Plant Creek

  1. So pleased I delved back and found this one, Wally, even if I did end up with EC’s ear-worm!

    Best wishes to you and Gini – – – Richard

  2. Morning Wally. Well first of all, I hope you are both safe and well from the first of your storms. It’s bad enough having an alligator stroll across your front window without the added trauma of approaching storms.

    15 minutes from home? All that sun and wildlife? You lucky in love and lucky in life old devil.

    Right now I really need a Swallow-tailed Kite and an Osprey against a clear blue sky. And with a Red-winged Blackbird singing in the background. Have you come across Brian K Wheeler? Right now I’m looking at two of his quite stupendous new books on Birds of Prey.

    • G’day, Phil. No worries about our storm. We will have a lot of rain which is always welcome to replenish the aquifer. Strolling ‘gators is why we live in Florida!
      I am not familiar with Mr. Wheeler’s work but shall be looking him up soon. He writes about birds of prey so he must be a fine fellow.

      Again, happy you escaped from the harsh Greek sun and hope you and Sue didn’t burn too badly. Thank goodness for the gentle skies of Lancashire!

  3. It-che-pack-a-sas-sa, It-che-pack-a-sas-sa. Wonderful. Like the musical clack clack on the tracks of a long train. Great treat for me to see the Sandhill Crane family. I’d like to hear that Redwing Blackbird tweeting Moonlight Sonata! 🙂

    • I love words like that! Lots of crane families in the area at this time of year. To hear the blackbird’s performance you must subscribe to (wait for it) —– “twitter”.
      Would love to see y’all soon! Love you.

  4. noushka31

    WOW, indeed what a bird life in…….. this unpronounceable place! LOL!!!!
    Whatever, the birds seem to be thriving there and that is heart warmer!
    What gorgeous photos, the flights are perfect!
    Enjoy your weekend Wally!

    • Thank you very much, Noushka! A great place for a walk in the wetlands – AND close to home!
      We hope you’re enjoying your travels. Have fun!

  5. Hear me singing (and be grateful that it is just in your head’.
    ‘Oh what a beautiful morning, oh what a beautiful day…’

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