Connor and I went out to the ponds at the Milliken Research Center. It was the first time that he had been there. The ponds are are of Milliken, Inc. corporate campus here in Spartanburg. The ponds and several acres of maintained wooded areas are open to the public to visit, picnic, walk, etc. The biggest draw to them are the various birds (ducks, geese, heron's, etc.) that live, hunt, or otherwise hang out around them. Families bring their children and feed the ducks and the fish in the ponds. People walk their pets. It is quite a nice local feature available to us thanks to one of the area's largest corporate residents.
While we were there, we got to watch and photograph the birds. Connor had a good time. He was getting into the entire bird watching thing. I showed him how to walk slowly so as not to scare the birds away too soon. This is particularly important with the great blue herons that live around the ponds. They don't like people getting too close to them, and carefully watch anyone that even appears to be walking toward them. They take off if anyone gets within 20-30 yards of them if you are lucky to get even that close.
Thanks to the afternoon thunderstorm pattern that we have had lately, there was quite a nice breeze and cloud cover to keep the summer's heat in check. Frankly, it was down right pleasant for a summer afternoon for the area.
We had a good time. I particularly enjoyed how much Connor seemed to enjoy it. Next time I promised him that we would take some bread so he could feed the ducks. I even managed to get a couple of nice shots of those finicky great blue herons in flight. A good day all around.
© Craig A. Lee