I make frequent trips to The Helen Carlson Sanctuary throughout the year but the bog is teeming with life in August.
There is an excellent metal viewing platform which provides great views of the surrounding area. Butterflies like this Silver-spotted Skipper land on the plants and flowers near the edge of the platform-( click on butterfly photo for more detail ).
I caught this Muscovy-type Duck hanging out on the lower deck. I believe it might be someone's pet duck but this one seems to prefer spending at the bog. From what I've read, they eat lots of mosquitoes. Strange thing is, I rarely have a mosquito land on me while I'm sitting on the viewing platform.The Green Herons are really active there this time of year. They can often be heard communicating with each other and with a little patience, you can usually get a good view of one. There are a fair amount of birds to be seen or heard at the bog. I counted 35 species seen or heard during my last visit. My favorite sightings were of a Scarlet Tanager along the wooded edge, an Osprey flyover and watching an Eastern Kingbird eat a dragonfly. The kingbird was trying to swallow the dragonfly for several minutes until it was chased away by an envious Eastern Phoebe.
There is plenty to see and hear at the Helen Carlson Sanctuary if you are patient. I bring my camera binoculars, spotting scope and kick back in a chair waiting for nature to reveal itself to me. It's a relaxing way to spend a couple of hours on a lazy summer day.
If you're planning a visit to this bog: Bring waterproof boots (path to platform tends to flood) and a scope if you have one-(great spot to scan distant trees for bird). The direction of the sunlight is best in the late afternoon but early morning is okay too.