Tuesday, May 17, 2011

migration madness (sunday part 2) #145-146

(back on the ridge)
female rose-breasted grosbeak
I'm sure I've seen (and definitely heard) warbling vireos at Mud Lake before, but my shots were always from below with funny white balance and I was never really quite sure (since the Tennessee Warbler and the Philadelphia Vireo look kind of similar). I didn't hear this one sing, but I'm pretty positive I got one!
#145: Warbling Vireo; Mud Lake, Ottawa; May 15, 2011
I love the description of the warbling vireo's song: I'll seize you and I'll squeeze you!
Hey ladies! Click for full-effect.
Another blue-headed vireo! Isn't it funny when you get a lifer and then you start seeing them everywhere?? OK, maybe not everywhere, but at least a few times...

Another black-throated green warbler

Redstart posed for me...I know I posted one just the other day, but I had to...
Just along the edge of the water I found this beauty, among a bunch of yellow-rumped warblers. Actually I saw two of them that day....lucky me!

#146: Bay-breasted warbler; Mud Lake, Ottawa; May 15, 2011.
This flicker sits on these lights and drums them. It's metal and it's really loud...I don't know if he's just trying to communicate or if he's actually trying to drill a hole! Poor guy, this makes me kind of sad. Because birds should be on trees, not metal lamps.

Once I got home, I was sitting in the living room and noticed some movement in the window. I had hung the hummingbird feeder up a few weeks ago, but moved it on Saturday after the fiasco with the squirrel (he drank all the sugar water and pushed it onto the ground once it was empty). But I'm not home all the often to see the action out there, so this was the first (actually second, but maybe the same one) hummingbird I've seen this year!

The great thing is I got this feeder late in the year last year and I couldn't understand why the birds didn't have the bright red throat. So I guess it's a breeding thing and I was so excited to see his bright red throat. Actually I was so happy that a hummingbird was in my yard again that I actually emitting noises of pure joy! (hummers always do this me). A finch had landed on the pole and this guy arrived shortly after. His look clearly said, "excuse me, but your feeder is over there!" Since then he's been visiting often. I look forward to watching them this summer!

All in all, Sunday was a great day. I missed the Cape Mays and the blue-grey gnatcatcher that everyone was talking about. Gotta leave something for next time, right :)

So the cool thing about this year's migration is that I'm starting to get to the point where I "just know," or at least have a good guess of, what a bird is without having to pull out the book anymore. Lord knows I've flipped through my bird guide enough times to know almost every bird in it and where it is in the book! Granted, I do check once in a while, but I've come a long way from only being able to confidently identify a robin, cardinal, great blue heron and the other "typical" birds. Last year, I had to look up every warbler I saw, and had to compare every last aspect...now it seems so much more obvious. And sparrows are getting so much easier too. So you know, yay for getting better at things.

Things (I) have for sure changed a lot over the last year. If you told me two years ago that I would spend entire weekends, consistently (several hours at time) chasing down birds, I'm sure I wouldn't have believed you. It's funny how a short hike on a winter day turned into a full-blown addiction...well, I suppose I could be addicted to worse things! Spending so much time outside, surrounded by nature...I really don't think it gets better than that. So the only question is, where to next weekend?

Also, I just wanted to let you guys how how much I appreciate your stopping in and reading and maybe even leaving a comment or two. Your comments always make me smile, and it's nice to know when you're writing  that a person or two is going to actually see it. I'm already drafting entries in my head when I'm out in the field...so I'm thinking of you!


Funkysandman said...

whoa! awesome post
sweet pics
hey, maybe the flicker thinks he found a drum set?

dwaynejava said...

Jenna, nice photos of newly arrived Avifauna. I also love the triptych Cardinal photo. Great comments about reader feedback. That's a great thing about blogs. You can talk about something with a group who is really interested and supportive of your latest sightings and travails.

Stuart Immonen said...

I've seen flickers do the same thing on other metal structures... with the same effect/results. I believe it's a territorial display of sorts.

Very nice photos!

dmorin said...

The louder the drumming, the more impressive it is. Birdsong and territories for the most part is dependant on how loud your song is. You should see Sapsuckers do it. I`ve seen them do it on lamp posts, traffic signs, even an old satellite antenna. I always worry about that Cardinal I accidentally work up in the mornings while pishing in the fall. I`m always afraid he`s going to bust his gut trying to chase me away.

As for integration between humanity and nature, on one birdwatching trip I found a female snapping turtle laying its eggs in a hole it had made in the side of a dirt road. Birds are not the only animals that are using man-made constructions for their uses.

Blue-headed Vireos are much more apparent in the fall. They take their time to move south, unlike on their way north. I`m impressed you got the Bay-breasted to pose. I always find that they are one of the trickiest warblers to get a look on.

Tiffanie said...

I love your cardinal pictures! He is so handsome! I am blessed to see several cardinal couples everyday and never tire of them...their crests give them such personality, don't they?

❦ fitcetera said...

I started reading your blog about a month ago but I've read pretty much the whole thing.
It IS amazing how far you've come in such a short time.
Your enthusiasm is definitely rubbing off on me.
I can't wait to go birding these days and my house and yard work is suffering! :D

Happy Birding!

deepdowndawn said...

Hi all, and thanks

I'm glad I don't have to feel bad about that flicker now that I know he's just being clever.

Hey fit, I just went back to read some entries from last year because I wanted to see what month I had seen a certain bird. I have to laugh at some of the things I wrote!