This beautiful barred owl was hanging out in a tree in our front yard last Sunday afternoon - in broad daylight! It was really stressing out a mockingbird that apparently has a nest in that tree. It was there for hours, and Scott eventually got the great idea to get on the roof of the house to get a better picture.
We had our first pond emergency (since installing the pond last summer/fall) last weekend. The fish started gasping at the surface. My research indicated that this was likely either the result of ammonia build-up or a pH problem. I didn't think it was ammonia since our pond is definitely not overstocked, and an ammonia test proved me right. It turns out that it was a pH problem, thanks to a heavy rain the day before. Rain here, for whatever reason, is very acidic. Thankfully we were able to solve this problem by adding baking soda to the pond in small doses over the course of a few days. Crisis averted!