Oh, wow.  Oh, woowee.  Or is that who, whoo, whooo …..
My second favorite place to go birding is Lake Mattamuskeet.
I did a quick day trip yesterday – and got a delightful surprise!
My first ever great horned owl.  
She and I spent spent some 35 minutes watching each other.
Eventually  she walked toward the trunk and her camouflage took over and she disappeared.

A trip to Lake Mattamuskeet needs to be on everybody’s  list.
 
It was at Lake Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge that the Bald Eagle was re-introduced to NC.
 
The Bald Eagles then made their way inland to Jordan Lake.
 
Try your hardest to get there at sunrise – they are almost always spectacular from the causeway!
 
Adult bald eagle way across the front impoundment at Mattamuskeet.  
This time of the year the eagles can be hard to find at Mattamuskeet.
 
The lake and its surrounding area has beautiful cypress trees.
 
 
The still waters of the lake and the impoundments often give reflections that are wonderfully detailed.
Great Blue Heron fishing.
 
 
The insect life at Mattamuskeet is very diverse – with many different dragonflies.
Did you see the dragonfly shadow?
 
 
The white-tailed deer really enjoy the browsing at the lake.  
 
 
The yellow-billed cuckoo is also found at Jordan Lake.
 I hear rather than see them most of the time.
 
 
The zebra swallowtail butterfly is the only swallowtail in our region with white stripes.
 

In April and again in August, when I go to Lake Mattamuskeet, I slow down in one section of the road near the lake.
I am looking for my favorite patch of carnivorous plants to photograph.
In the first photo: the tall pitcher plants with yellow gold red-streaked hoods are trumpet pitcher plants and the hooded structures are hollow leaves that fill with water that traps insects that fall in. The pale solid green hooded leaves belong to a different pitcher species and I couldn’t identify it. What is neat about the first photo is the dark brown blossom that is at the lower left – that is the flower of the trumpet pitcher plant that has matured and is going to pop open and spread its seeds. In the second photo you can see the early trumpet pitcher plant blossom and get some idea between the two blossom photos of why this carnivorous plant is called “trumpet”.

WALK8965 08-24-16 @ 14-23-05 Mattamuskeet trumpets

WALK8969 08-24-16 @ 14-23-45 Mattamuskeet trumpets

Pair of northern pintail ducks
Taking flight from one of the impoundments at Lake Mattamuskeet.
The lake is part of the National Wildlife Refuge system.
We are blessed by this 50,180 acre refuge and its diverse wildlife.

WALK1017 02-19-16 @ 09-53-33 Mattamuskeet pintail pair flight

alert, oh, so alert now that the young buck has seen me

Mattamuskeet deer detail