Thursday, May 30, 2013

Steam Train and Other Things

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Dahlia shot while out plant shopping in Indiana County, PA.

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Early blooming Rhododendrun in our small garden.

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Gray Squirrel

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The Female Pileated Woodpecker has finally learned how to land on the suet feeder and decimate it in no time at all.

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Taking its lead from the female pileated this crow has also become a daily visitor to the suet feeder until it was recently demolished by a bear.

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Two Male Rose-breasted Grosbeaks getting into a squabble about who was on the feeder first.

Last week the Nickel Plate Road Engine 765 which belongs to the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society returned to the Altoona area where it had a number of tours during the week for Norfolk Southern employees.  Over the Memorial Day weekend rides were available for the general public.

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The first three photos were shot along Railroad Street in Cresson Township as the train deadheaded into Altoona.

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Male Pileated Woodpecker keeps a wary eye out as it digs for bugs in an old log.

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Hooded Warbler taking a break on our side deck.

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May Apple Flower

A Bear Story

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For several nights we had a problem with this mangy bear getting into our bird feeders, our garbage and finally my seed locker.  Knowing that something was wrong with the bear (mange) we called the Pennsylvania State Game Commission to inform them of the condition of the bear and asked if it could be trapped and gotten some medical help.

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The local conservation officer brought out a bear trap and set it up in our yard next to the tree line.

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After baiting the trap with a whole bunch of baked goods like layer cakes and cupcakes he set the trap and all we had to do was sit back and wait.

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Unfortunately, all we managed to trap was this raccoon.

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Which took off and headed across the yard when the game warden opened the door.

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30 seconds later all we could see was the rear end of the raccoon as it headed up one of the trails that leads from our yard into the woods.

Sunday, 19 May 2013

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The daily passenger train to Philadelphia via Harrisburg pulls out of the Altoona train station just prior to the arrival of the Nickle Plate 765.

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The steam engine heads to the Altoona train station after pulling out of the Norfolk Southern Juniata Works in Altoona.

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Letting off steam

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Easing into the station.

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Norfolk Southern engine 8102 which was part of the railroad tour pulls the passenger cars and the steam engine back into Altoona so it would be ready for a second tour to Cresson and back into Altoona later in the afternoon.  This engine is one of the Norfolk Southern 30th anniversary heritage locomotives that was painted in the original road colors and bearing the original company heralds.  The engine is a GE ES-43AC  It rolled off the line at the Juniata works in July of 2012.


Anonymous said...

Enjoyed the Train and woodpecker shots.
Regarding suet,leave the cakes in the plastic with exposed side down. discourages starlings and crows

GRD said...


Thanks for the feedback about the suet feeder.. However we live in the mountains and seldom get Starlings at our feeders. I actually like to see them because when there is more than one trying to get at the suet they tend to spread their wings and it looks like they are dancing. Besides the woodpeckers we have about 10 different species that also use the suet feeders.