Three fascinating creatures hang out in the shadows and shores of Candlewood Lake.

They may call Candlewood Lake their home but there's an excellent chance you have never spotted them. If you look closely, you may catch a quick glimpse on the shoreline or quite possibly in the water.

Neil Stalter, the Director of Ecology and Environmental Education for the Candlewood Lake Authority has written in-depth articles on each of these creatures:  the Great Blue Heron, American Mink, and the Double Breasted Cormorant.

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Great Blue Heron - This majestic bird known fondly as 'The Great Blue' does its very best to blend into the landscape by doing their best impressions of Candlewood Lake foliage. They fish with the patience of a saint waiting until an unexpecting fish swims by and then they move their neck and beak at record speed and snatch the fish in one fluid motion. The Great Blue is a year-round resident of Candlewood Lake. If you've ever heard a mysterious sound between a loud bark and a growl, you just might have heard the Great Blue's call.

Image Courtesy of Jan den Ouden from Pixabay

American Mink - This little ferret-like critter is tough to spot and is one of the most skillful swimmers on the lake. These furry little guys are mostly nocturnal mammals which is why it's tough to spot them as they hunt their prey. Their lush soft fur is 100% waterproof which keeps them nice and toasty in the water no matter how cold the temperature. The CLA has spotted one of these critters in the Vaughn's Neck area. If you're lucky enough to see a family of minks along the shores of Candlewood Lake you might hear them chattering to one another as they swim and dive looking for their evening's dinner.

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The Double Breasted Cormorant - The perfect location to get a peek at these lanky black birds is high above Pine Island directly across from Brookfield's Candlewood Shores. Look for a tall lanky tree devoid of any leaves and you may see a bunch of Cormorants sunning themselves as they dry off their feathers after dive-bombing Candlewood Lake waters to catch their lunch or dinner. Their fishing abilities are top notch due to their diving prowess and because of their webbed feet, they can actually dive and then chase their catch down.

To keep up on activities, wildlife, and the state of Candlewood Lake, click on www.candlewoodlakeauthority.org.

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