Falling Water

Mueller Pond

Near my house is a mixed development area. I just love it because it is an exemplar for urban development. The space was reclaimed from an old abandoned airport. The key word here is sustainability: pedestrian friendly, green building construction, and a LOT of space devoted to wildlife and mini parks.

waterfall march 2

Another waterfall ….

falling water

I managed to catch a few photos of some of my neighbors here in Austin’s District 9. Austin recently created a new voting map. The redistricting people originally were going to call our zone the African American district. Seriously. But you know, is District 9 better? I guess bureaucrats aren’t Neill Blomkamp fans =)

I am embarrassed to say the birds found me a bit irksome ….

036

A grackle sillhouette.

redwing

Here is a redwinged blackbird yelling at me.  He has a pretty big posse at the pond. They were singing to each other and sounded a lot like R2D2. He puffed his shoulders at me and the spots looked like scary nightmare eyes.

redwing2

I also saw a great blue heron fly by and a lot of waterfowl.

Ah, life in the inner city. It’s WILD out here.

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11 thoughts on “Falling Water

    1. Thanks. I’ve been playing with a point and click and so far I have been pretty happy with the results. As long as people don’t start calling us — prawns — I suppose we can just live with it. =)

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  1. What were they thinking in naming your district. Both names could stand a rethink. Nice to see development considering the wildlife. To often it just wipes it away. Lots of red-winged blackbirds here. They are a chattering bunch.

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    1. As for the voting district name … I just assume they were trying to be efficient. haha
      I love love the sounds the red-winged blackbirds make. I was unaware of their range of vocalizations though. What a treat.

      The Mueller development took more than a decade of planning. They really wanted to get everything right and I think they won some awards for it. You don’t see cars there … they are tucked away and unnecessary because the area is designed so people can walk anywhere as well as live and work in the same area. Sensitive to the area’s history they even tried to avoid gentrification problems. There is a wide range of income levels at Mueller and a porch on every property to encourage community.

      But the parks planning was superb. Everyone has native plants and flowers in their yards but surrounding and intertwining the human areas is a huge wildlife corridor planned by the people at the Lady Bird Wildlife Center. I walk past those waterfalls, a pond and native prairie meadows every time I go to the farmers’ market to shop. It brings me great hope to know that we are capable of designing sustainable living and working spaces.

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  2. I’ve never seen a red winged blackbird before, he is rather gorgeous. And what on earth is a grackle? Strange birds you have in Austin’s District 9.

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    1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grackle
      A lot of people here hate grackles and see them as a plague but I love them. They are sort of like a magpie/crow hybrid. Quite clever. At twilight they roost in trees by the millions. And that is probably not an exaggeration. One evening I was walking along auditorium shores and the noise they made was deafening — easily as loud as an airplane.

      i will have to go on a grackle expo-dition now to capture their essence.

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  3. Wow wow wow. We don’t get red winged blackbirds out here in the hills west of town much but then once you get away from the river, there isn’t a lot of water action out here either. I so appreciate seeing what’s going on in your Inner Wilds. (Hilariously sad notes about the naming of your district. Oh Texas, how I love/hate you!)

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    1. Too funny about the district name. It is a bit like the Hunger Games, too. Ha ha

      The hill country has its own special beauty … as your blue bonnets show.

      I used to see red winged blackbirds in Alberta, Canada where I grew up so it was a really nice surprise to see them and blue eyed grass here. It just goes to show that the prairie is one really vast ecosystem.

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