Monday, June 13, 2016

Birding By Bike

     This past weekend was all about biking. Yesterday my sister and I biked 40 miles through Brooklyn and Queens, it is so fun to cycle through neighborhoods I don't often frequent and parks I have never visited. And on Saturday I biked to Marine Park, Dead Horse Bay, the Return-a-Gift pond at Floyd Bennett field and back home again, as hunger took over. So I tacked on some milage this weekend and made stops to enjoy some of the sights...
Orange flowers, species? Not too sure... but I like them :) First stop was the Marine Park Salt Marsh.
A red milkweed beetle finding refuge under a milkweed leaf.
A snowy egret appears to be at its dance recital, but it's actually just fishing like a champ.
Ever so dapper of a bird. I like them because it looks like they are wearing spats, with their yellow feet (see photo above this one), which is also a great way to tell them apart from the great egret, aside from the fact snowies are far smaller.
Pretty sure the chick is still in there, possibly the lump to the left...
The lovely osprey couple.
Still working on this ID...
A cabbage white before departing to my next location...
Welcomed out onto Dead Horse Bay by an Eastern Towhee. 
Fledged starlings begging for food along the beach.
What I was hoping to see, black scoter, 5 in total- here you can see a female on the left and a male on the right.
The male out on the bay.
There were two males and three females- at this moment the other male is 50 yards away napping on the water.

Laughing gulls were common along the beach, they are easy to find, just follow their loud calls.
A great egret hunting just offshore.
An immature laughing gull, looking hilariously awkward- almost in his adult plumage.

The scenery, Dead Horse Bay is an old, capped landfill from earlier times (1930's or so). 
A (typical) herring gull story.
Prize achieved, a tasty crab.
"Can I have some???"
"Pleeeeeease can I have some?!"
"Aw, c'mon..."
After DHB, I biked across the street and down a runway to get to the Return-a-Gift pond and bird blind. A mourning dove perched as I stayed out of sight, behind the blind.

An oriole nest was nearby and this female came down low and close.
A robin thinks about where to forage next along the pond.