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


Sunday, August 1, 2010


(AUGUST 1, 2010) I learned something new this week that I have actually known for a long time. I don't know one plant or flower from another.

While at Grandfather Mountain last week, we went on a nature hike with two park naturalists. Along the way they pointed out various flora. All I saw was green plants. It's a part of my education where there is definitely a lacking.

A couple of years ago I thought that all small birds were sparrows. I knew the robin, the cardinal, the blue jay, and the blue bird, but everything else that was a small bird was a sparrow. My education there has picked up, but there is still a lot I don't know about birds.

This morning Sadie and went to Angler's Park. There was a constant mist as we walked, but the temperature was a pleasant 64 degrees when we got there at 7:00. We walked three laps around the ball field, so we got in our 3 plus miles. I took my camera and snapped some pictures on the first lap, and then returning the camera to the car to keep it dry.

I did hear the red-winged blackbird, but didn't see it. I heard a crow in the woods, but didn't see it. I did, however, see some bright flowers this morning. As I said, I don't know much about flowers but I did see some white ones, some purple ones , some blue ones, some pink ones and some yellow ones on this dark misty cloudy morning.

When I realize how much I don't know about nature, I often think of James Thurber's essay, "University Days" in which he describes his difficulty in seeing anything in a microscope. When he does finally see something, he draws it, and the instructor informs him that he has drawn his eye which was reflected in the microscope. Often, when I see a plant or flower, I see only something of beauty - something I can't identify, but something of beauty.

Notwithstanding the fact that I don't know the names of the flowers I saw, I did enjoy my morning at Angler's Park as we had the park to ourselves because it was a bit damp for most people. Heck, even the ducks and geese weren't out this morning. We had our little bit of nature to ourselves, and the cool temperature made it glorious.

It was another good morning on the Riverwalk.

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