Reflections of White Rock Lake

TX White Rock Lake_7280acs Mirror, Mirror, on the wall

Is there a haven in the Dallas sprawl?

Perhaps a park like White Rock Lake,

A place to watch the morning break?

TX White Rock Lake_7398ACSMirror, Mirror, I do insist,

Show me White Rock in the mist

TX White Rock Lake Pelican_7241aTX White Rock Lake_7404A

Mirror, Mirror, hear my words

Who’s the fairest of the birds?TX White Rock Lake Yellowlegs_7780aLesser Yellowlegs certainly seems enamored of his own reflection…

TX White Rock Lake Cormorant_7805aTX White Rock Lake Coot_6951a

While Double-crested Cormorant (left) is primping for her photo op, and American Coot (right) is working it for the camera.

TX White Rock Lake Geese_6971acs Not all the birds in White Rock Lake Park are native, or even wild. A number of domestic geese and ducks prowl the shores. This is a White Chinese Goose.

TX White Rock Lake Duck Domestic_7652aMore domestics: Black Swedish Ducks in front and the Crested Pekin Duck. And yes, there is no “g” in “Pekin”, despite the insistence of the spell-checker.

TX White Rock Lake Gadwall_7939a Ah, here are we are back to the wild critters. These Gadwalls are looking especially natty.

TX White Rock Lake Kestrel_7025acsAmerican Kestrels perch in trees on the edge of a meadow, looking for mice and voles to eat.

TX White Rock Lake Red-bellied Woodpecker_7816a Red-bellied Woodpecker, also looking for good things to eat, much prefers insects. Despite the moniker, the belly is only marginally reddish. The red on its head would seem a better inspiration for a name, but “Red-headed Woodpecker” was already taken.

Mirror, Mirror, on the Loch

Who’s the fairest on White Rock?

TX White Rock Lake Pelican_6995aThat’s an easy one! American White Pelicans are the stars of the show at White Rock Lake in winter. These HUGE birds roost and preen on logs near the lake shore. They look like they’re too big to get off the ground, but in fact they are graceful and powerful fliers. Watching them skim the lake’s surface is an impressive sight. Not one I’ve captured to my satisfaction yet, though.

TX White Rock Lake Pelican_6931aFUN FACT: How huge are White Pelicans? From beak tip to tail tip they are about 5’2”, nearly as tall as I am. Their wingspans are about 9 feet long. The pouch in their bills can hold 3 gallons of water. Take a look at a gallon of water in the supermarket, and then imagine holding three of them in your mouth! Ouch!

They catch fish by dipping their heads underwater, like bobbing for apples. Sometimes several Pelicans will get together and herd fish together to make them easier to catch.

TX White Rock Lake_7979ac no s  Mirror, Mirror, tell one, tell all

There’s a special place in the Dallas sprawl

Where humans gather, yet young birds fledge

It’s truly a park on the Wild EdgeTX White Rock Lake Pelican_6983a