Melissa Fischer. wild in Michigan. naturalist


An American Robin. Some Robins overwinter in Michigan, surviving on berries and not worms.

Cedar Waxwing. There was a mixed flock of waxwings and robins feeding on the berries. I'm the ass with the camera sticking out of the window in the carpool lane.

Two Fox Squirrels eating walnuts.


15 responses

  1. I was just catching up on the impresssive variety of squirrels you’ve regularly seen out there in Michigan: red squirrels, fox squirrels, jacked up black squirrels, mystery squirrel, island squirrel … must be lively! Here on our paths, most responsibility for hijinks is borne by the gray squirrel, who is everywhere. It’s cool to see all these others on your site.

    December 7, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    • melissakoski

      Ha reading “jacked up” made me laugh. My daughter’s taken to saying jackhole (combo of jacked up and …well you know) so I know its time to curb my tongue.

      I was just thinking about gray squirrels yesterday thinking back to our neighbor who always told us gray squirrels are always the only squirrels in the area because the castrate all the other squirrels. I haven’t looked into it (yet) , but it sounds too far out there to be true.

      December 8, 2011 at 5:01 pm

      • Ah, yes, interspecies castration. Very common … Just kidding, this is news to me! But a quick google search does turn up all kinds of results. It could explain why squirrels seem so jumpy sometimes. Nuts.

        December 8, 2011 at 8:30 pm

  2. Wonderful pictures! They were totally worth the four car pileup :) I wonder if these berries ferment into some type of alcoholic cocktail, and perhaps the few birds that stick around are just lushes.

    December 7, 2011 at 11:03 pm

    • melissakoski

      Ha ha good one! I think you’re onto something with the lushes. They do ferment and come up delivering an alcoholic kick!

      p.s. I took the pictures before school was out and the car pool line was NOT in motion. (:

      December 8, 2011 at 5:04 pm

  3. Beautiful pictures. Great job.

    December 8, 2011 at 4:40 am

    • melissakoski

      Thank you Arindam, much appreciated!

      December 8, 2011 at 5:04 pm

  4. You are now an official birder and bird photographer. If you are an ass then I and a bunch of others are too. I’ve been accused (and I am guilty) of stopping in the middle of the highway to get shots. I like Mediaudio’s comment about the 4-car pile-up.. But, heck, you got some great pictures anyway. :-)

    December 8, 2011 at 7:53 am

    • melissakoski

      My eldest is thankful we live on a slow road without a lot of peers due to my middle of the road stopping. (:

      That was a funny comment about the pile up wasn’t it? I got a nice chuckle…. I was surrounded by very nice cars too. (;

      December 8, 2011 at 5:07 pm

  5. Very nice pictures, Melissa. Do you have any idea how many of your pictures have been saved into my “Wildlife Folder” ? The squirrel picture does leave me confused as we have both red and gray squirrels up in WV where my wife and I have a cabin on 20 acres of mountain land. The red ones (or are they fox?) enjoy eating the siding off of my cabin. I have always thought they were Eastern Red squirrels – now I am left to ponder!

    December 8, 2011 at 8:48 am

    • melissakoski

      Are the red ones pretty small? They’re usually the most destructive ones….gnawing through screens and drywall to cause havoc! There are two of them I watch regularly out back and they spend hours chasing each other and the other squirrels out of their personal space. They’re fast!

      Thanks for your kind words Louis! The 20 acres sounds lovely by the way.

      December 8, 2011 at 5:18 pm

      • They are, in fact, smaller than the gray squirrels and DESTRUCTIVE so must be Eastern Reds as I had thought. Finally, I mixed up some cayenne pepper in water and sprayed the areas and it slows them down.

        December 9, 2011 at 10:02 am

  6. melissakoski

    Fabulous return. I’m going to have to transition to the junior high gardener position to use this gem of a nut joke. (: The kids always love humor.

    December 8, 2011 at 11:48 pm

  7. ” I’m the ass with the camera sticking out of the window in the carpool lane.” Ha!

    I’ve been pulled over twice with a camera in my hand. Once for speeding to the next exit to caputre a sunset (93mph) and one other time while trying to shoot some clouds while an officer was passing the other direction.

    Come to think of it.. there is a 3rd time too. Dang! (officers called by folks to check out the mysterious person going around photographing stuff)

    April 9, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    • melissakoski

      I am lucky never to have been pulled over…. though I recently was speeding to try and catch an amazing sunset!

      April 22, 2013 at 11:10 pm


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