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.