There are many photos of Chicago wildlife — especially waterfowl — in the sections of this portfolio labeled "Serenity at North Pond" and "Chicago's Pool of Tranquility." But I don't want to give the birds and other animals I've photographed short shrift. I'm going to keep words to a minimum in this section. 

A flock of geese hopped out of Lake Michigan near the entrance to Belmont Harbor, then had to make a bigger jump to get to the top of the revetment to graze on the patch of grass. This goose made the leap with dramatic aplomb.

The four photos immediately above were taken at the Butterfly Haven in the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. The room, designed as a tropical habitat, has hundreds of these gorgeous creatures, some of which are not shy about landing on you and staying awhile.

Pigeons are not generally regarded as the sharpest tools in nature's drawer. But on a prematurely cold day in October 2013 — one that presaged the bitter "Polar Vortex" winter to come — these city birds knew just what to do: Congregate around this decorative fire pit in downtown's Daley Plaza.

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