White Deer Twins on the Riverwalk

White Deer Twins on the Riverwalk
These rare white deer twins were born this summer and have found a safe home at Dan Daniel Park and on the Riverwalk
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My name is David Hoffman. I teach English and journalism at Averett University, but I have two side interests - writing and photography. I also enjoy walking daily with my English setter, Sadie, and my wife, Elizabeth, on the Danville, Virginia, Riverwalk. As a novice to studying nature, I am fascinated by the slightest facets of the great outdoors, but most of my pictures are of birds - I don't know a lot about them, but I am learning more and enjoying taking pictures of them daily. I also take pictures of plants, other animals, and insects. All pictures posted for each day were taken on the day of my blog entry.

Leave a comment if you have the time or e-mail me at dhoffman@averett.edu


Tuesday, July 20, 2010


(JULY 20, 2010) Yesterday afternoon, I noticed a blob of sort on the screen of a window in the kitchen dining area. I thought that a bird had made a mess on the screen.

However, as I got closer to the window, I realized that there was a beautiful butterfly clinging to the screen. Getting even closer, I noticed that there were two butterflies, obviously in a mating position. I grabbed my camera and took a couple of shots from inside before going out to the deck and taking pictures from different angles. After a couple of minutes the butterflies flew off, still attached to each other.

When I went into the house, Elizabeth said, "You bothered those butterflies while they were in an intimate embrace. You interrupted them."

I said, "I told the two to get a room, and they just flew off to do so."

The creation, or renewal, of life is amazing. Each day on the Riverwalk I see young off-spring of the ducks and geese. I see the young song birds as they try out their new voices and their new wings. I have seen the procreation of geese in the river and the mating of lady bugs and damselflies right there in the bushes. I have, also, seen the off-spring of both the geese and the damselflies as Sadie and I walk the trail each morning.

But the results are not so obvious to one who has not ventured forth on the trail daily. For example, the heron that is standing in the river next to the dark woods is smaller and younger than the one that stood there last year. Also, there seem to be more herons on the river.

The osprey nest, next to the Brantley steam plant, is vacant; the photographers who had set up their long lens on tripods are no longer interested in the empty nest. The river is now full of Canada geese as the young have now grown the size of the adults. The barn swallows and the blue birds that practiced their landings on tree branches have now joined the adults in the search for small insects as they skim the top of the river.

Even the flora along the river goes through periods of replenishment. The small orange flowers that were once seen near the train bridge are no longer there. The sweet smell of the honey suckle no longer permeates the air since the sweet flowers have faded.

However, some beautiful large flowers are now showing themselves along the banks of the river. Some of these are pink with white insides and some are white with maroon insides. Beside the large blooms of these flowers are smaller buds that will soon burst forth to continue coloring the landscape with nature's beauty. Also, to the side of the blooming flowers are ragged flowers that have bloomed and passed.

Such is the creative hand of nature - always replenishing and always renewing.

It was another beautiful morning on the Riverwalk.

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