Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Til my nest post, have a good week.
Monday, October 25, 2010
Friday, October 22, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
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
Monday, August 30, 2010
Monday, July 5, 2010
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Monday, May 10, 2010
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.
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
Monday, March 1, 2010
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
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
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
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
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.