Thursday, May 31, 2012


Late this afternoon I went out for about 1 1/2 hours not really expecting to see much but was pleasantly surprised.  Quite a few birds out searching for their evening meal.  Blackberries are beginning to rippen and the ripe ones were getting eaten.  A few more days most should be ready.

One of the nutria was leasurely swimming about cooling in the shady area.  After a while it moved on, stopped and began some serious preening.  The dexterity of their hands reminded me of a raccoon.  Finally it moved on heading towards the pond.

As I was coming back across the bridge, I stopped distracted by the Vireo and a pair of Grosbeaks.  A slight movement and I spotted a young buck half hidden and giving me the watchful eye.

For the second time this week, I heard the Yellow-Billed Cuckoo.  This afternoon, it flew close by and yes, right to where I was shooting into the sun.  It will stay in the area for the summer so hopefully I will get another close encounter in good lighting.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Busy Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher

The trees were filled with the ever so slight peeps of Blue-Grays this morning.  I watched one in particular as she kept flying in and out of a certain area.  A closer look revealed why she was such a busy bird.  Three little ones lined up peeping for food.  Mom gnatcatcher would bring food in and feed one at a time going down the line.

How cute are they all lined up, peeping?  Their white eye ring makes them look all the more bright eyed.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Testing New Camera

I finally had the opportunity to get out this morning and give my new camera a test drive.  Clouds moved in almost as soon as I arrived at my location but I thought, okay, good chance to check the noise reduction in low light.

I have to say so far I am pretty impressed.  I had become very unahppy with the high noise levels in my previous camera and was looking for an improvement.  Since I already had Canon lenses, I wanted to stick with a Canon.  I debated and debated over sinking that much into a camera but decided what the heck.  I don't take extravagant trips or spend money on much of anything else and since I get a great deal of enjoyment out of photography, I made the plunge. 

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sunday, May 20, 2012


The morning started out with enough of a chill to warrant a light jacket until around 1000.  Creatures of all sort were seeking the warmth of the sun, lounging in any sunny spot they could find.  Sort of the way I feel today.  No serious birding this morning as I took the dog out with me.  We walked for about three hours and she is now crashed out on her bed.  I figure for every one step I took, she ran five.  Good for the heart and spirit.  It was a very nice pleasant morning for a long walk.


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Nesting White Eyed Vireo

Secreted away in its hanging nest

Further down the trail, a White Eyed Vireo hunting

Monday, May 14, 2012

Brown Headed Cowbirds

Both days over the weekend and in a couple of locations I encountered several groups of cow birds engaged in displays to attact the female.  While not a big fan of the way they parasitise nest, their courtship behavior is interesting to watch.

I could not help but feel some sympathy for the one lone female at one location.  She could not make a move without a group of 5 to 7 males following her every move.

When she would come to rest for any amount of time, the displaying of the males began.  I guess to the female, the clicks, trills, neck stretching,  wing and tail feather spreading is what does it for her.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Red-Shouldered Hawk

The morning started beautiful and clouds quickly moved in giving the sky an overcast appearance.  The skies have been beautiful and clear all week but on my first day off in two weeks....clouds!

Far too many folks at the park this morning for any quality birding so I quickly left.  I zipped over to a quieter location to watch the hawks hunting.  A pair of Red-Shouldered nesting in the area were flying the field.  They flew over several times and I turned my attention back to a large group of Kingbirds stirring this up.  In a minute, they flew away and all the birds went quiet.  I turned around and on the post behind me was one of the hawks.  We looked at each other for a few all to brief seconds before it took off.

I realized too late into the morning that the Bobolinks have arrived at a field up the road.  Weather permitting in the morning my mission is intent on trying to get some good shots.