Cherish is my favorite word, and I cherish the ability of turning the routine into a beautiful moment.
Nature creates in me, a spiritual and meditative time to bring peace, harmony and balance, into an otherwise ordinary day~
Mary Howell Cromer

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Oh My Goodness, a Huge Balancing Act~

The Red-Shouldered Hawk season began this year on the same property that the hawks have used for a few years now.  They began building the nest and brooding March 3, 2015, and as of this share, they have 3 eyas all doing well.  Hopefully they will remain on the nest, no falling allowed, and fledge in the next couple of weeks.  On the same property a Groundhog has lived for the past 3 to 4 years without any mate.  When the property was sold, the new neighbors called the groundhog Henrietta, and as it turned out, they did right by her, for she has 5 cubs and ended up with 4 to raise.  
The huge dilemma was that as long as the cubs were so small and milling about, they could be taken by the Red-Shouldered Hawks.  
What to do, what to do?  
Fatten them up with extra food so that they will be too big to carry away.  So far so good.  In fact the mother has taken at least one off into the wood and I saw it climbing a fence the other afternoon.  The runt of the litter remains near the den, but is in the safety of the culvert under the property owners driveway for now.  One sadly got taken out by an auto that evidently drove too quickly, or did not care to try and miss hitting the little cub.  They can be a menace, but so far the ones around here have not been much of a problem.  
As for the nest condition...this year the adult hawks seem to be very much aware of the problems of last year when the nest fell away after so much use.  They are for the first time ever in my many years of following them not tearing food apart for the young, but rather landing on the side of the nest and leaving the food for the young ones to fend for themselves and then they will sometimes cling to side for a while, before flying away.  The young ones seem to be thriving quite well with this method of feeding, however, I have missed seeing the adult female feeding her young ones, making sure that each one gets their fill.  Nature is really working it's miracles so far on the nest this year, for it is doing well for all of the little eyas.

Thank you so much Nikki and Wilma!
The landowners have been so gracious in allowing me to tramp upon their beautiful property.  I really have been blessed in making new forever friends by means of caring about wildlife~

Remember to double click on the first image, to view a larger slide show presentation after you have read the narratives~

I will be linking up with Judith for:


Stewart for:

That is Henrietta with her cubs.  I made them a mixture of rabbit pellet food, apples and greens, and feed them this for 2 weeks~


I have begun to feed the little runt some food to help it along, as it's mum and littermates have now left it on it's own.  I hate to see it struggle~


  1. those little groundhogs are pretty adorable. :)

  2. I never thought I'd say this, but, 'what adorable groundhogs!'. Mama Henrietta and her cute cubs are doing very well, thanks to your kind and gentle heart. I'm certain that, if Miss Henrietta could speak, she'd be forever grateful to Mary, the Sweet Fairy of furry, forest creatures! How smart of you to think of fattening up these little critters, so that the red-shouldered hawks can't carry them away, to fatten themselves up, no doubt! You are a life saver, my friend, helping those in need, the smaller, earth-wandering underdogs, in this case, even though we all know how much you love those bold and brilliant flyers!

    Gorgeous photos that so perfectly illustrate this story of great suspense and adventure!

    Wishing you a wonderful week ahead,


  3. Hello Mary, The ground hogs are adorable. Especially when they are in another person's yard. The hawk chicks are cute. Awesome series of photos! Have a happy day and week ahead!

  4. Hi Mary. I have to say that as much as I am an avid birder I was totally knocked out by your pictures of Henrietta and her litter. Your pictures of momma with her little ones are truly wonderful. I'm sure the hawks didn't mind taking a back seat today.

    The whole post is a joy to read and to look at. Have a great week ahead.

  5. Babies are so cute. Doesn't matter if they have wings are cute little front feet-sies.

  6. Beautiful series of images. They are cute.

  7. You have a tough loyalty for land and air going on right now Mary. :-) I would think the same, save the babies of the groundhog but be sure the eagles have enough to eat too.
    I've been watching for the groundhog that lives by a highway cloverleaf when we're out that way because I think it's the same one I've seen for a couple of years in the same area. Broke my heart to finally locate it this past weekend - hit by a car. I sure hope there are no babies in a den in the long grass.
    Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday.

  8. I agree with Poppy...usually groundhogs are a problem in my garden but oh those babies are too cute for words and how wonderful of you to help them.

  9. Cute little groundhog cubs. You are so sweet to help the mama out with extra food for them to protect them. Have a beautiful week Mary.

  10. You are a wonderful photographer. It must take much patience to get these great shots. I just love the little groundhogs. I hope they stay safe.

  11. I love all the shots of the Groundhogs

  12. Great photos of the hawks and groundhogs. I hope they all continue to survive and thrive.

  13. Wonderful photos! The ground hogs are so cute.

  14. Well I have learnt something today as I have never seen a groundhog before? How big are they? I can't really tell by the pictures, but they seem quite small. And very cute!
    Wonderful as always to visit you Mary. Great shots, and such a dear heart you have. hugs

  15. The young hawks are awesome and I do hope things continue to go well with them. The groundhogs,! What a pure delight to get to see this little family. So glad you have been feeding them, especially the runt which is now on its own. Loved all your amazing photos! Great post!

  16. Beautiful Hawks!!! Gorgeous flowers!!! But the groundhogs steal the show today! Adorable.

  17. Hugs to you the groundhogs and the adorable runt - what a brilliant post, loved all these happy photos! PS thank you, your comment came through fine on my Paris post!
    Wren x

  18. What an amazing series of wonderful photos: fascinating animals and beautiful flowers!

  19. Groundhogs are so neat ...we see them a lot alongside the roads in NC. And to see the babies is amazing! They are just the cutest. I'll be showing these photos to my hubby so we can enjoy them together. Sweet hugs, Diane


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