An absolutely amazing sight at Fort Snelling State Park this afternoon: about 100 American White Pelicans on the lake, interspersed with dozens of loons, geese, mallards, and coots. A veritable birding extravaganza! I could hardly tear myself away to go home for supper, and I made Dodo come down to see them before we ate. I've never seen this kind of pelican before, though I know there are a lot of them in the western part of Minnesota and to the northwest up in Canada. For some unknown reason they aren't included in Stan Tekiela's fine book, Birds of Minnesota, so I don't know their usual range. I'm fairly certain that their presence this far east, and especially in the middle of a city, is a rare occurence. What an astonishing gift they are.
And here's a 2-minute video of their activities on the lake this afternoon:
Today I'm grateful for: the stunning beauty of the birds at Fort Snelling State Park, and the shared wonder among the people there watching them today; for my CSJ congregation and the service opportunities it provides.
Holding in prayer today: JK, ML, PC, MB and all recovering from serious illness and dealing with the changes it can bring to ordinary life; Pope Benedict XVI and the people his visit to the US has touched; Lilly in Mexico; K experiencing seizures again after a long time free of them; the Sisters of St. Joseph in Ireland.