A contribution to this week’s Photo Challenge, Close Up.
These are two photos that I’ve taken in the Greenbelt area (near Brielle Avenue and Rockland Avenue) of Staten Island in the last two weeks.
The following are photos of egrets that I took in Staten Island, New York, where I live.
Purple Martins are the largest variety of swallow.
My Purple Mountain Habitat Movie.
One interesting aspect of visiting the habitat is seeing all the different styles of bird houses which is especially interesting if you want to build a bird house.
Staten Island’s Purple Martin Habitat, located in Lemon Creek Park in Prince’s Bay, Staten Island, is the only sanctuary for purple martins in the 5 boroughs of New York city. Prince’s Bay, the name itself, has a history. This area was originally named by the English as Prince’s Bay, but then the apostrophe got dropped–carelessly undoubtedly–in writing, so it became Princes Bay. Probably because someone thought that Princes was a misspelling for Princess, started calling it Princess Bay. All the signs I saw in the area have Princess Bay as it’s name, but on Wikipedia it has its name as Prince’s Bay. Whatever.
Princess Bay, one of the nicest and most picturesque area of Staten Island, is located on the Atlantic Ocean and has a lovely beach area, a small park called Lemon Creek Park, and a boating dock where many Staten Islanders, who are lucky enough to own boats, moor their boats. It’s one of my favorite places to visit in Staten Island and makes a lovely day in a park which includes a beach and things to see like the Blue Martin Habitat, and many kinds of birds. If you like to take nature photographs, this would be a good place to visit when you come to New York City.
If you visit Lemon Creek Park and Princess Bay, only a few blocks away is Wolf’s Pond, another wonderful nature site to see in Staten Island. Wolf’s Pond also has a park, which is much larger and attracts many more families than Lemon Creek Pond. Both parks have picnic tables. One big drawback to Lemon Creek Park, that I can’t understand, is that it has no restroom facilities. I have solved that problem, by using the restroom facilities at Staten Island University Hospital which is on Seguine Avenue on the way to the park.
Although a long trip, it’s easy to get to from Manhattan on public transportation. After getting off the Staten Island Ferry in Staten Island, take the #78 bus to Seguine Avenue and then walk the rest of the way (it’s a long bus ride, but you will get a good tour of Staten Island). On your walk there, you will also pass the Seguine Burke Plantation and probably see lots of peacocks.
Below are some of my photos of this area and things you will see if you should pay a visit.
One of my favorite places to visit in Staten Island is Blue Heron Park. If you are coming from Manhattan and using public transportation, after getting off the Staten Island Ferry in Staten Island, take the #78 bus and get off on Hylan Blvd. and Poillon. It’s best to take a map, because half the time the bus drivers have no idea where it is. From the corner of Poillon and Hylan, it’s just a short walk up Poillon, by a few of Staten Island’s most beautiful houses, to the first entrance to the park, which is right in front of Spring Pond. It’s a long bus ride (about an hour), but you will get a good tour–through some of the worse parts and the best parts–of Staten Island for the price of a bus ride.
Spring Pond is a kettle pond, formed when the Wisconsin Ice Sheet left a large piece of ice that melted and formed a bowl-like depression, called a “kettle.” Rainwater and run-off filled the depression to form the pond. Spring Pond is a wetland that naturally filters out pollution.
Located near Raritan Bay, Blue Heron Park has 250 acres of meadows, streams, woodlands, and 6 ponds all of which I intend on exploring this spring and summer.
I visited the Park yesterday and took these photos. I saw a flock of blue herons above Spring Pond, but they flew away before I could get my camera up and focused. I’ll try again next week and update this blog with maybe some better photos.
At the park you can walk the trails while listening to the sounds of nature and watching a great variety of birds or do research in the nature library. The park offers all kinds of nature and craft/art programs and clubs for all ages. If you like nature photography, you will really enjoy yourself here.
Blue Heron Park is only a few blocks from Raritan Bay in Staten Island.
Visit my other post “Staten Island’s Great Nature Trails” to view more nature walks in Staten Island.
All ecosystems change over time. Ponds become marsh then forests. Meadows and fields become forests. Eventually forests burn or are blown-down, and meadows sprout anew providing a home for a whole new succession of plants.
These are a couple of new photos I took of Spring Pond on June 8, 2012