Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Walney Pond

Wanting to get some exercise we headed over to Walney Pond.  I have posted about it many times during the life of this blog.  It is close to home - only a short drive away - and we come here many times during the year.  It is right up there on one of our favorite places to go to, with the added benefit of it being 'just around the corner'.


We have been noticing some activity in that there were large machines at the far side of the pond a few visits ago.  On investigation we discovered they were water pumps but on our last visit they had gone and everything seemed to be fine.  This time we were shocked to see how low the water was, and on one side of the wooden pathway it was completely drained.  Gregg was able to walk over to where normally it would be full of water.  The bottom of the bird house pole is usually submerged.  We figured the stones had been laid to prevent erosion, maybe.  


On the other side of the bridge the level was lower than normal but at least we could tell it was our Walney Pond.


Okay, city girl and city boy (us) were looking at these strange indentations just underneath the surface.  It reminded me of a honeycomb.  At first I thought that the roots of the waterlilies had been dug up by the park people, but that's the great thing about coming to these places, you meet up with very nice people who are only too willing to educate you.


A gentleman was walking by with his dog and he overheard me.  He was nice enough not to laugh and said that these had been made by the fish, that they were getting ready to spawn.  He told us that if we looked closely we would see a fish on every one of the holes the fish had made, and sure enough there they were.  He also said that once they got ready to spawn there would be a flurry of activity and just to prove him right, just beyond these fish, all the mud was being swirled up and around, and ripples went off like an explosion.  I can't remember if he identified this as a Bluegill or if this was some other fish and that he knew Bluegill were also in the pond.  You can see what a Bluegill looks like if you click here.


I smiled at him and said, "You wouldn't by any chance be a fisherman would you?"  He smiled back and said yes he was and that he and his son had come down to the pond many times to do a little fishing.  His son was all grown up now but they still went fishing together sometimes, and mentioned that they had taken a couple of trips up to one of the lakes in Canada.


This is his dog Ferris who patiently waited while his human chatted to us about his favorite passion for the next 20 minutes.  We enjoyed our encounter with this very nice gentleman and his best friend Ferris.  Ferris is an eleven years old German Shepherd/Boxer mix and was feeling the heat.  


A lovely, friendly dog who liked me talking to him and having his ears tickled.


We mentioned our resident beaver and was told that they may have been taken to pastures/ponds anew, because they were doing too much damage to the trees.  In the two following photos you can see the entrance to its lodge which would normally be under water.  We were surprised that there were two entrances.  Us city folks are learning all kinds of things because of the lower level of water.


This gives you a better look at one of the entrances.


By this time we had left Ferris and his very nice human companion, and had walked across the creek on the other side of the pond.  There were indeed many trees that had fallen across the water since our last visit, but on investigation we didn't find any evidence that this was caused by the beaver.  More like the bad storms we had over the summer.  


I hope our beaver returns once the pond is back to its normal level.  We're going to miss him if he doesn't.  We will have to go over to Huntley Meadows to visit his cousins instead.


More on Walney Pond in another post.

26 comments:

jabblog said...

Isn't it nice when you meet friendly people and chat for a while? I hope the water levels return to normal soon - so much depends on it.

TexWisGirl said...

really nice place with nice boardwalks, too. i like sweet ferris. :)

Lyn said...

It is lovely when people bother to stop and talk and share their wisdom. Ferris looks like a nice sort of dog one that you could tickle!
Thanks for taking us along on your walk.
x

imac said...

Most enjoyable post and pics my friend.

eileeninmd said...

Denise, what a lovely walk to your Walney Pond. I do hope the water level returns to normal. Great post and I enjoyed your photos.

Kay said...

This is such an interesting post. You are so lucky to be living near such a beautiful place. I sure hope the water level rises. I loved learning about the fish spawning too.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

What a nice man to share that knowledge with you. I'm glad you educated me as well:)

Sunray Gardens said...

Whoa I thought are river was tremendously down, but yours is horrible. Hopefully things improve for all of us this next year.

Cher Sunray Gardens

Kalantikan said...

I also love your Walney Pond, i most appreciate that circuitous wooden walk. And thanks for the information we don't have here! You have a nice way of photo storytelling.

Ranita Sinha said...

Hope the water level returns to its normal once the rains start pouring..we do also have a place near our home just like yours where we visit for morning walks whenever we have the mood..:)..

Cezar and Léia said...

wow beautiful stones. This place is so peaceful and your pictures are great!
Léia

diane b said...

Your Walney Pond is like our Underwood Pond it is close by. Great walking area and so becomes a regular on the blog but I never tire of your adventures by the pond. Ferris is a Beauty. Its warming up here so I hope you are cooling down soon.

Relindis said...

Walney Pond looks like a lovely place to take a walk. Isn't it interesting when you find different aspects each time you go to a familiar place and nice people who stop and share information - or just stop to say 'hello' - I've learnt a lot about the fish spawning from you sharing. Look forward to more posts about Walney Pond.

The Elephant's Child said...

Thank you. I loved this excursion with you and Greg. Beavers are just so exotic to me.

Valerie said...

I enjoyed your walk, Denise, especially meeting Ferris. It was quite educational learning about the fish and their spawning habits. I can pass that on like I was the educated one.... smiles.

the cuby poet said...

I loved reading this most interesting post the lovely photos.

Janie said...

Interesting that the fish make those holes for spawning. I wouldn't have guessed that. I hope the beaver comes back! He has such a nice lodge waiting for him.

Carver said...

Now I know what those are. I've seen fish spawning before but didn't know what it was. Ferris is a beautiful dog. Looks like a pleasant walk. I hope you can get enough rain to fill the pond to normal levels.

Don said...

Looks different without water, I like the fish and Ferris looks great. I know a couple of Boxer dogs and a few German Shepherds know I know how good they look combined. I hope you get your water back so the baby fish have some space.

gigihawaii said...

hmmm. I could have sworn that I left a comment here, but I don't see it. Anyway, I wanted to tell you how lucky you are to be near that pond. I live in a suburb with lots of houses, but no pond. Lol. Of course, there is the Pacific Ocean 10 minutes from here, but that's not a pond, is it.

Donna Heber said...

Hi Denise,

Walney Pond looks like a lovely place to stroll around. I think quite a few of us need some water levels to rise. My brother lives in Virginia on a creek that goes out to Chesapeake Bay.

Craver Vii said...

I couldn't talk 20 minutes about fishing. It would be too depressing. I think the fish laugh at me. The last two years I got skunked (caught no fish) so many times that this year, I didn't even bother to buy a fishing license. The poles are stored away.

It's good to have a nice place to visit that's close to home. I also like making new friends out of former strangers.

CameraCruise said...

Love your Walney Pond.
Ferris is such a sweet dog.
Great post,enjoyed your photos.

SandyCarlson said...

They sure are doing some work at that pond. That's great. The only way to appreciate nature is to get out there.

That pup sure has a lovely face, too.

Marie said...

So sad your beaver has gone away! I hope they return as well. I was fascinated by the honeycomb spawning grounds! I've never heard of this before, or seen anything on any Nature Channel, and it just goes to show that there are millions of bits of information out there to be discovered if we will only take the time! Wow!

Icy BC said...

What a beautiful place to spend time! Love the waterlily flowers, and the boardwalk is a plus for me!