The eagles are back and they start incubating eggs in the next few weeks. There are other animals that have been seen pretty regularly, foxes and bobcats head the list but of course there are red and gray squirrels and coyote tracks have been seen on the lake. It hasn’t been an easy winter for the animal looking for food but that is what happens in a New Hampshire Winter.
The eagles have been around for a month or so, staking out their tree. Chris Martin, the Audubon person who deals with eagles, says that they lay eggs from the end of February to the end of March. Hope that the weather warms for them but they have to be hanging out somewhere so huddled down in a nest probably isn’t all that bad compared to other things. They will feed on road kills and other animals that haven’t survived the winter and will also eat ice fisherman’s leftovers as well as taking ducks. They are survivors.
A red fox or pair of red foxes have been seen running around on the lake, seeming to make Stamp Act Island a stopover. It is easy running on the lake as the winds have made either icy areas or wind pack that they can run on easily. Same with the coyotes whose tracks are seen more often than they are.
But some of the great things recent snows and wind on the lake are the patterns in the snow. The snow drifts are sometimes big but the small patterns are beautiful. If you go out when it is really blowing, you can see the “dunes” form and then get eroded away. One thing that still amazes me is the fact that there are still places around the lake with slush under the snow. The wind blown snow is quite dense so where it piles up, its weight pushes down on the ice and water seeps up through the cracks. You are not in danger of drowning because the ice under you is a foot thick or more in most places, but if you are on skis, the slush meets the cold ski and immediately freezes. Same is true of snowshoes. Now, you have a block of ice on your feet so you have to get to a place where there is no slush and then take it off. You learn to be careful and avoid these places if you can……