Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Monday, October 25, 2010

A Good Weekend - October 22, 2010

Before I left work on Thursday I sent an email that read I probably wouldn't be in on Friday since it was suppose to be the nicest day of the weekend. I won't bore you with details but instead tell you what and where I photographed on Friday. I started off on Roberts Road where I photographed an Immature White-crowned Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Rusty Blackbird, Northern Flicker, Yellow-rumped Warbler and a White-throated Sparrow.

I did walk the trail at Lake Erie Metro Park where the Yellow-rumps were flying everywhere, along with the hundreds of Robins and Cardinals out there. At the big lookout at the back of the trail I managed to get a photo of a Ruby-crowned Kinglet. A Red-tail Hawk landed on a tree just across from the smaller outlook where a bunch of Rusty Blackbirds were playing in the mud. And of course you can't help but stop and talk to Luc before you leave.
On Saturday I drove out to Pte Moo HQ again to try and get the sunrise. To watch the sky full of color as the sun rises up is just breath taking. There is something definitely serene about watching. After the sun reaches its heights I went to sit just inside the gate where the usual attractions were flying around. There's a pine tree with grape vines inter-twining through its branches where a Gold-crowned Kinglet makes an appearance. Today he definitely tested my skills as to whether I would get a photo or not. Other birds that I photographed were: Cardinals, Yellow-rumped Warblers, White-throated Sparrows and of course the Black-capped Chickadees.

The Thrush was photographed in my backyard. While sitting at the kitchen table I looked up to see this bird perched on my back fence. I ran to get the camera and then scrambled to find a memory card since the one that was in the camera was in the reader. He wouldn't turn around but it was enough to know that it was a Thrush.
Til my next post. Have a Good Week.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Sunday - October 17, 2010

Although Saturday was just as equally nice as Sunday there was more bird activity today. I start my day by watching the weather channel to see when the sun is going to rise. My problem is that I keep forgetting that the time they mention means the sun is already up in the sky. So on my way out I stopped off at Bishop Park in Wyandotte to try and get a picture of the yellows, oranges and purples that fill the sky over the water. The time is 7:38 and the sun rise is scheduled for 7:48. After taking the picture you can't help[ but sit and look to take it all in.

With this part of my trip out of the way I head on over to Pte Moo and Roberts Road. I drive down to the very end and park to see how much activity is going on. The birds are really singing up a storm today and the flying in and out of the fragmites is pretty strong as well. I managed to get one Immature White-crowned Sparrow to be very accommodating in getting his picture taken. I love the ones that make this part of birding so easy. First look to the left, now to the right, maybe one over the shoulder. Maybe now it's time to move on.

As I head on back down the road I hear singing off to the left so I decide to ride close to the edge of the little horseshoe kind of opening. There I found Gold-crowned Kinglets flying through a tree close to the road, jumping from this branch to that branch very quickly.
A beautiful day and a great picture day for me. Til my next post.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wet, Cold & Eventful - 09/25/2010

Headed up north on Friday to get in an extra day of fishing for what would be our last time fishing on the Ausable for the season. The smaller of my two cats (Peanut) went up with us – she wasn’t feeling well and she had an allergic reaction to her vaccination that she got on Thursday. The weather was cold, windy and wet – I can say that I did not get in any fishing as planned but my boyfriend did. For me I spent the weekend (except for when I sat in the truck while he went wading) in my blind watching the birds fly in and out like planes at the airport.

One after another the birds perched themselves on the branches where the feeders were waiting their turns to get seed. Black-capped chickadees flew in three/four at a time chasing this one off and losing a turn. White-breasted Nuthatches were doing the same. Red-breasted Nuthatches were going to the feeder off to the side where no other bird was going except for a few chickadees. The Blue Jays joined in sometimes two – sometimes four at a time looking for the corn that I left on the bench to keep the squirrels away from the feeders.

Other birds that came in to store up were the Downy Woodpecker, the Hairy Woodpecker, A Red-bellied Woodpecker, the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker made another appearance and the Pileated Woodpecker soared in from out of no where.

There were other birds in the area as well – some kept to the tree tops and only came down so far. Some also were very much back-lighted and I just couldn’t focus in to tell what they were. On Saturday there were three White-throated Sparrows scurrying around on the ground under the trees – it wasn’t until they hopped up to a branch that I was able to get a shot. On Sunday while the Pileated was on the tree to my left, chickadees, nuthatches, and a few Tufted Titmouse were on the tree in front of me an Hermit Thrush made an appearance to the right of me. So many to choose from, not enough hands or cameras to take advantage of this over-whelming opportunity.

Now I will say that although the squirrels can be entertaining (and believe me there were quite a few) there was one little Yellow-rump Warbler that was interesting to watch. In all the books that I have gone through when looking for birds there are those that will go to feeders and those that won’t. This little Warbler would start at the top of the trees and work its way down til it was within inches of the feeder and then take off. I couldn’t help but wonder if it was just waiting for me to turn my back so it could see what the others were getting out of this screened cage with seed. Was it worth the plunge? I know it came close to trying the pancake/peanut butter mixture in the hold of this stump and then changed its mind. Guess I will never know.

That was the end of my weekend - til my next post...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My Little Bird Fest - Sept. 10, 2010

Friday - today is my brother Steven's birthday and my sister Nancy and I decided to take him out for lunch, but before doing that I decided that if I go out about 7 and return around 10 I'll have enough time to get ready and meet everyone. I headed out to Roberts Road (Reaume Rd to Roberts) to see if anything was just sitting in the trees or on the poles. There usually is - the only problem is that the light is in back of them and today wasn't any different. Perched on a power line there is an American Kestrel and on the post a little ways away is a Hawk (too far to tell what kind) - on the other side of the road a row of Starlings.

I traveled down to the end of Roberts Road and park there for about a half hour just watching the birds fly in and out of the fragmites. As I leave the parking lot movement catches my eye and the fun begins. I saw and hopefuly captured a decent photo of the following bird: Pine Warbler, Black-throated Green Warbler, Chestnut-sided Warbler, Common Yellow-throat, Yellow Warbler, American Redstart, a Nothern Flicker that was doing their best to get the attention of another Flicker (and succeeded), Blackpoll Warbler, Orange-crowned Warbler and a couple of Baltimore Orioles. (female & immature).
I watched the Flicker for some time pruning herself, acting coy, looking to see if she caught the eye of a male that was close by and I didn't see until he took a couple of leaps towards her. The American Redstart was the last bird I saw on this outing, as quick as he popped his little head out of the branches that's how fast he was gone.

As I started to head home this Red-tail Hawk posed very patiently as I pulled my vehicle off to the side of the rode. After a few shots he took off, as I watched him fly away I noticed that there was another sitting on another pole just behind me.
On Saturday I decided to go down to Roberts Road again but unfortunately not a bird could be found. Do you think with all the shooting that is going on now due to hunting this and/or hunting that the birds go someplace else where it's safer and less noisey?? I did go to LEMP where a Detroit unit of the Audubon was there looking at birds through their binoculars shouting "Black and White Warbler", "Blue-headed Vireo", "Golden Eagle" no Robin. When I caught up with them they were looking up and there perched on a top branch of a tree sat a Hummingbird. After snapping a few shots I decided that it was time to head home. All in all not a bad weekend. Til my next post.

Monday, August 30, 2010

New Camera to Shoot With - August 30, 2010

For a while now I have been thinking about getting a new camera. Not that there was anything wrong with what I had (Rebel XT) but I really thought that it was time to upgrade. I went and purchased a Canon 50D - to go along with my EF 100-400mm f4.5 - 5.6L IS USM lens, along with the battery grip (one heavy piece of equipment - literally). I took the camera out as soon as I got it (without the calibration) and took the first three shots shown in the column to the right of my blog page.

My friend Jerry helped me calibrate my lens to the camera (I didn't even know that needed to be done) on Friday morning (a week later) I took it out that afternoon , Saturday and Sunday. The next three shots in the right column were taken after calibration of the lens.

As with anything new you always want to experiment - and I and I can't wait for the Labor Day weekend so I can do just that. So... Til my next post.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Fourth of July Surprise - 07/22/2010

July is fast coming to an end. My little trek up to St Ignace is next week and I am hoping that the weather is a little more forgiving than it has been. I only have a couple of highlights for this month. The Fourth of July weekend was a stay at home weekend for me. This was the first time in 12 years of going up north that we didn't. But on the 4th I decided to go over to Pte Mouillee and see if there was anyting interesting out there. As I traveled down Campau Road I watched a couple of Yellow Warblers flying through the trees. One stayed on one side of the road the other flew to the other side. After taking the photos mom and baby reunited and I was off down the road.

I sat outside the gate of Pte Moo HQ on Campau Rd because in the past there's always so much activity going on in the foilage out there. With the slight breeze that brushes the tops of the bushes there is the occasional jerking in the bushes. Robins working their way from the ground up. Cardinals playing catch me if you can. An occasional outburst from the Gray Catbirds that are in there - they just don't want you to see them.
As the temperatures started to rise and the sun beating in on the right side of the vehicle movement in the bottom of the thicket caught my attention. Not really being able to see what it was (not even through the lens of my camera) I decided to just focus in on whatever I could grab and snap a couple of shots. Must say when I got home to view my shots of the day I was a little surprised at what I had photographed. A baby Great Horned Owl (seemed to have wakened from a nap). Although I didn't see mom or dad around I'm sure they were keeping a watchful eye on this one.

My next outing was this past Sunday - I went out to Campau Road again but after an hour and a half nothing was happening so I moved my way down to Roberts Rd. Roberts Rd has been good to me - it seems to be the place where I can usually grab my first shot of something. Today I got my first decent photo of an Indigo Bunting. This little guy seemd to be everywhere I traveled down that road (unless he had a lot of friends). As you travel the road there is a trumpet bush that that day seem to attract a Red Admiral, a Red-spotted Purple, a Monarch, a Common Sulfur, a few different Dragonflies (of which I have no idea of their names), and an Oriole hid amongst the orange. If a Hummingbird would have appeared it would have made my day - but no such luck. With the road coming to an end I decided to head on home. Til my next post.

June Highlights - 2010

Things at work got a little strenuous when the girl who takes care of Exports and Imports of samples went out on medical. Her duties were divided between me and another when we were asked to fill in til she got back. This left me exhausted and I found no time and unfortunately no desire to go birding. While visiting a friends house on Grosse Ille a Red-headed Woodpecker landed on the feeder, sadly I did not have my camera on this visit. Another trip out there again that weekend (with camera) was good timing - the woodpecker landed on the feeder again. I took a picture of the bird through the window just in case it disappeared before I got around to the back of the house. Another visit gave me two. This was it for June. Til my next post.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Mother's Day - 05/09/2010

Ah! Mother's Day - the day when mom's all over the world think that today is just about them. Well it is and today I am grabbing my camera and heading out to see what I can find in the birding world. A trip down Roberts Rd is my first stop. Driving down Reaume all I see are (what seems to be hundreds) of Tree and Barn Swallows just swooping in and out catching the mosquitoes that I'm sure are out. The foilage is filling in all the bear spots beautifully and the sounds of birds singing is coming from them. There was a Yellow Warbler blasting out a tune and a couple Gray Catbird's playing chase amongst the tree branches. A Peregrine was flying overhead along with a couple of vultures. It never came down close enough to get a photo - kept going over the hill to the gravel pit. In spite of all the singing the only other bird that made an appearance was an Eastern Kingbird. On that note I decided to go over to Campau Rd and sit outside the gate where all the bushes are - something's bound to appear there.

First a pass through the gate to see if anything is flying around the water. There was a couple of families of geese. There was one couple that had two little ones, and another family had six. There was a mama Kildeer with her one little darling. On the lines above before you pass through the gate again a Tree Swallow with two little ones perch quietly and take in the sun. I parked outside the gate for about an hour to watch and listen and hope that something would land for me to photograph.

The Cardinals never let you down when you want to take a picture. I couldn't believe how red the males still are. The Baltimore Orioles were flying through like they were Robins. USusally when I've spotted one its usually one or two and they're so far up in the tree or hidden by leaves that you just can't focus in. But this one fella landed in the top of the brush and I sat patiently hoping that he would make his way to the top instead of flying off. I must say he was very cooperative.

I managed a shot or two of a Bumble Bee and a Red Admiral. When all was done and with places to go and things to do I decided to head home. But before I left a Yellow Warbler landed in a tree along the road and allowed me to take a few photos of him. A good way to end my outing. Hope all the mom's had a good day. Til my next post!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Better Late Than Never - May 7, 2010

I started this back when it happened but unfortunately other things came up that just didn’t make this possible – so I call this “Better Late Than Never”

April 10, 2010 – Sometimes do you ever come to the conclusion that more happens in your own backyard than out there some where? Today I went out to walk the trails over at Lake Erie Metro Park only to find that it was rather quiet. At home I have the Goldfinches, House Finches, a couple of Downey’s and the other feathered menagerie that hangs out back. But late in the afternoon my son was brought upstairs by the melodious sounds of a Northern Flicker. I watched as it left the tree out back to the light post across the street. Soon it flew to the tree directly across from my driveway – only to be joined by another. With camera shooting away I walked closer and closer to the birds. By the time I had reached the middle of the road they were on the other side of the tree so I followed. Now they were where I started and then flew away as I tried to catch up. Not a bad two-some.

Oakwood Metro Park Bound – April 18, 2010

As you turn onto Huron River Drive from Van Horn you can’t help but notice the beautiful purple foliage on the trees across from the cemetery. It’s around 8:30 and there is not one in the park except for the grounds crew near the Nature Center. As you get the 1 mile mark from the center there’s a little movement on the tree to my right – I make a U-turn to head back towards it and get a photo. Just before I entered the parking lot on my left I notice a bird in the tree – it takes off and I drove slowly to see where it might land and maybe get a couple of photos. Just as I slow down the bird takes flight and there I am driving very slowly to see where it might land. Well it landed on the right hand side – in some tall grasses. I tried to focus in on something so I can take my shot and see what it might be. Not sure about the rest of you but it’s not easy for me to take a shot from the driver side out the passenger side window – and you don’t dare get out of the car because the slightest move urges the bird to take flight. The shot wasn’t clear – but it was clear enough to make out an Eastern Meadowlark.

The trails didn’t really give me anything to shoot until I decided to back track and take one of the middle trails that got you back to a shorter trail. On this part of the trail I found a White-breasted Nuthatch, a Brown Creeper on a distant tree and numerous Hermit Thrushes.

On my drive out I decided to go to the right to see if I could spot any Eastern Bluebirds which I didn’t get to see the last time here – it had appeared then that the houses had been taken over by the Tree Swallows. But not today, perched on the tree on the corner (with distracting branches) a Blue-bird. I tried to get a picture or two but with no luck. One did fly down to the road, unfortunately I was pulled up away from it and if I were to start up my vehicle to back up it would have flown the coop. So I took pictures the best I could. Not clear ones again but none the less I can prove I saw the bird. Not a bad day.

The End of the Month - April 28, 2010

It’s always a good day when you can get a picture of a bird that you have never shot before. What’s as good as that? Getting a bird in your yard that’s never been there before is right up there with a good day. Sometime late Wednesday afternoon while my two cats sat in the window with there eyes on a rabbit, a Hermit Thrush landed in the back yard near the window. Excited I ran to get the camera and try to get a few photos. Of course by the time I got out there it was gone. I stood for a while and scoped out the yard and there it was in the back behind all the foliage that has started to grow in the yard. Patiently I just snapped away hoping that it would come out far enough to get a good shot. Patience does pay off.

This was my month of April – til my next post.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Pte Moo to LEMP - March 27, 2010

While looking out my kitchen window and watching the bright red Cardinal and the two Juncos ground feeding I was trying to put my thoughts into words about my day. I drove out to Pte Mouillee HQ to see if I could catch a sunrise. I always seem to miss it and almost did today. I have got to remember that I need to leave the house at least an hour before the sunrises. There really wasn't much to take photos of except for the Great Scaups. There were three Tree Swallows flying over the water (too far out to get a good shot but good enough to tell what they were). A Bald Eagle landed in the trees before I left.
With nothing to photograph I decided to head over to Lake Erie Metro Park. First stop is to talk to Luc and then head on down the path. First pictures before I even hit the trail were a couple of Cedar Waxwings. Within about ten steps something small caught the corner of my eye, a Golden Crowned Kinglet. After bouncing around in the trees on my right he flew to my left side and bounced there too until he decided to be very cooperative. I must have taken at least a hundred photos until I told myself that I needed to stop - I thought he would have flown away after ten shots.
Except for some distant sounds it was pretty uneventful. The creek at the boardwalk had and Egret as a Blue Heron flew in. I continued my walk with no sightings. The last bird seen on my walk was a Black-capped Chickadee.
Before heading home I decided to make a run down to Roberts Road to see if anything was out there. I went down to Reaume Road to see if I could spot the Red-tailed Hawk that I saw making a nest about two weeks ago. Before reaching Roberts Road I spotted a Juvenile Red-tailed Hawk sitting in a tree, I backed up a little and managed a few shots. Other than that the only other birds spotted were a lot of Red-winged Blackbirds and a few Song Sparrows.

On my way home there is a stream next to the high school in passing I noticed that there were two Egrets standing in the water near the tall grasses. Well with things that need to be done at home I end this post. Til my next one...

Monday, March 1, 2010

February 28, 2010

This is the last day of the month. We've had another big snowfall and on the day before Jerry left for his Carribean Cruise his concern was wondering if the Pipit survived the snowfall prior to this one. Well Jerry thePipit is still there at Pte Moo HQ.
Walt Pawlawski was out that morning and in our conversation he stated that there is just one Pipit and that it travels with a Song Sparrow and a Swamp Sparrow. He said I may have misinterpreted one of the other birds for another Pipit.

So after sitting out there for a little over 3 hours I did see the Pipit, Song Sparrow, Swamp Sparrow and American Tree Sparrow.

These birds were not the only ones I saw. At 8 a.m. the water was full of Goldeneye, Bufflehead, Mergansers, Scaup, Coots, Geese, Mute Swans, and Tundras. By 11:00 a.m. they were gone except for a group of Scaups sleeping. That was the last day of the month. Til my next post.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Pipit - Eagle - Great Horned Owl - February 20, 2010

The American Pipit is alive and well at Pte Moo HQ. It's been seen and photographed over the weekend (Saturday and Sunday). In fact, he was so obliging that he sat on the water wall and gave you a front view and profile (left and right). After searching out the Pipit and getting a few shots of the Goldeneyes and Buffleheads I parked outside the gate and just watched the traffic of birds flying in and out of the brush and come in for a morsel or two off the ground. The weather was so cooperative that sitting and watching the usual Cardinals, Chickadees, Wite-throated Sparows, Tree Sparrows, House Finches, Downy and red-bellied Woodpeckers and a few Red-winged Blackbirds for two hours was soothing and entertaining. If you wait long enough the Fox Sparrow and Song Sparrow will and did make an appearance. This seems to be the only time I really have any patience.

Just before leaving the HQ - Jerry was coming in to conduct his tour for "Birding On Ice". I mentioned to him the birds that I did see and he was off to his group and I was off to Lake Erie Metro Park. As I turned onto Jefferson from Campau Road an object in the tree to the left caught my eye. Checking to make sure there was no traffic coming towards me I made a turn to head back to check out what was there. I parked along side the road where another car had stopped to take a few shots at the Bald Eagle sitting in the tree. I got out of my vehicle and walked across the street to see if I could get a better shot of the huge bird. He kept eating the branches that were in his way - just didn't know why. I figured that he would have flown off when I crossed the road but he stood his perch. After about 50 shots I decided to make my exit.

From the time I left Pte Moo I was debating if I should attempt a walk around the nature trail at LEMP. One couple told me that the trail wasn't too bad and that you could see some of the ground and there was still snow on the edges. Another told me she just had double knee replacement and wasn't heading down any trail. So the decision was made - I only had one knee replacement - I had my combat boots on (I had traction) - and there was still snow on the edges of the trail - it was a go. I began my walk from where "Luc" is housed and walked to the back boardwalk where the Great-horned Owls nested last year. Hollow was empty so I went to finish my walk. Just before stepping off the boardwalk I heard a bird singing so I stopped to listen to where the sound was coming from. While looking around I caught the eye of a Great-horned Owl just sitting in the tree past the fragmites. Catching a photo of this guy was more than I could have ever hoped for. After about 100 shots I figured I should have at least one good one and I was off to continue my walk. Since I had to walk slow through the trail I searched the trees and found nothing more to photograph. I was homeward bound.

I can't remember when I walked the nature trail at LEMP last but, for being my first time out in quite a while - this was truly a "Good Day". Til my next post.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Tundras and a Red-tail - February 18, 2010

Had a doctors appointment yesterday and all the way driving there I had talked myself into not taking advantage of the sun. By the time I had gotten home I ran in and gathered up my camera and headed over to Pte Moo HQ. No real activity there - Mute Swans - Common Mergansers a couple of Eagles flying in the distance. At the gate the usual massive amounts of Cardinals and American Tree Sparrows and a Northern Harrier flew ovehead.

After about an hour there I decided to head over to LEMP and make a trip down to the boat launch. There I found Buffleheads, Common Mergansers, Hooded Mergansers and Goldeneye. In the distance close to the homes behind the restrooms were Tundras - there were these four that I watched for a while as they started to "kwooo" and then flap their wings. At first I thought they were getting ready to fly away but instead it seemed like all they wanted to do is play.

Before going home I decised to take a little spin through the parking lot of the museum and see if there were any Cedar Waxwings hanging around. (Saturday I caught a couple of shots as they sat in the thick of the bushes eating what berries were left.) Nothing there to take a photo of I decided to head home.

As I was leaving the park I noticed in the grass off to the right a Red-tail sitting. I pulled my vehicle up a bit and decided to get out and try to get a shot. Starting from the back of the vehicle I fired off a few frames and kept shooting in that manner as I kept walking slower and slower in its direction. I managed to get in front of it and fire off a few more frames before he decided to take off. Im sure am glad I decided to take advantage of the sun. Til my next post.

Monday, February 15, 2010

My Girl - February 13, 2010

Saturday morning before heading out I took a little detour over to St. John St to check out the ducks on the river. Sitting on the edge of the ice was a Canvasback and two lady friends. As I kept watching all the ducks in the water I suddenly heard a lot of quacking from the center of this flock. There were these two Mallards going back and forth - back and forth as this sweet little thing just floated along side her man.

I have watched geese honk at the top of their lungs as the female swims away in
embarassment. I have watched swans get physical nipping at the swan trying to make its get away. Now I'm not saying that she didn't do anything wrong (at least from what I observed) but, whatever this discussion was about it was settled quite gentlemanly. When it was over the trio went their separate ways. The one swam off by himself and the couple went in the other direction. Guess she found her hero.

Snow Buntings - February 12, 2010

Decided to leave work early on Friday and take a run down to Pte Moo HQ to see if I might catch another glimpse of the American Pipit. Watch the trees next to the boat launch and down and didn't see any movement until I drove around to the other side of the parking lot. Saw two birds fly up and land and move very quickly. At first I thought they might be Kildeer but then said "No - can't be". As I raised my camera to take a shot I noticed their cheeks and said "Bunting".

They scurried back and forth and disappeared everytime a vehicle passed by me, but they came and continued scurrying about. Like the American Pipit getting a shot of a Snow Bunting was a first for me. Til my next post.

ps - Saw Walt Pawlowski Saturday (late morning) and he mentioned that he saw Snow Buntings with Larks. Unfortunately I don't remember the road he mentioned but he did say something about Huron River Rd. So if anyone can help me out with the area he might have been talking about - would really appreciate it.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

In With The Breeze - January 27, 2010

My friend Jerry has been a big influence and help when it comes to identifying the birds that I have photographed. Over the past two years Jerry will get a shot that I will hate him for. If you've read his blog and viewed his photos you know what I mean. Wenever I've gone out I have always considered it a good day when I've photographed a bird that I haven't before.

On Wednesday (Jan. 27th - around noon) I decided to take advantage of the sun and head over to Pte. Mouillee HQ and see if there was anything to photograph. First place to travel is along the water and see if there might be anything out there. That day it was quite breezy and there wasn't much to photograph. While parked a little bird blew in and was really struggling with the breeze coming across the water. Since I'm not very good at quick identities I've learned to take photos of every bird I see - this little guy was no different.

Even after I spent the night checking out the books I still had no idea of what this little guy was. Of course the next morning I sent my photo off to Jerry and he came back with the answer - an American Pipit - a terrific find he said. He told me to check out my books to make sure and he would post a note to birders to confirm. Before lunch he called to tell me he hated me and that he had yet to get a decent photo of one. He doesn't get a chance to hate me that often so I do cherish those times when it does happen.

At the gate to the entrance there are trees and a lot of over growth and shrubs, there you will find Black-capped Chickadees, American Tree Sparrows, Juncos, Cardinals and White-throat Sparrows. If you sit long enough you will hear the "chig-chig" of the Red-bellied Woodpecker - and then he'll come swooping in. I caught a glimpse of another bird on the ground, through the fence with unusual markings - a Fox Sparrow. Snapped this shot while I had a chance. Who knows if the weekend has a little sun I'll head out again and maybe get a better shot.

With the sun going down it was time to leave. Til my next post.

Friday, January 8, 2010

First Photo of The New Year - 01/01/2010

First let me start off by wishing everyone a Happy New Year. I've been out of commission for a month so far. I had full knee replacement at the beginning of December and outside of the numbness and physical therapy I am doing fine. It was hard though to sit still and not be able to go out and look for our feather friends but I made the best of it just watching from my kitchen window. The yard was full and still is of sparrows (naturally), but my thistle socks keep attracting anywhere from a dozen or two of Goldfinches at one time and at least six Juncos feeding on the ground below. I had and still do have a pair of Cardinals and Downy Woodpeckers feeding daily along with a couple of House Finches.

On January 1st sitting on the back fence of my yard was a Sharp-shinned Hawk. Able to move around a little better I grabbed my camera and slowly made my way from the front of the house to the back corner so I wouldn't scare him off. I managed a couple shots and then brought myself out into the open. I managed a couple more shots and a couple more steps everytime. I was a little surprised that he didn't take off. He did give me a couple of good shots.

Hoping that I can get out soon and to more places than just my backyard but til then "Good Birding " to you all. Til my next post.