Sunday, July 16, 2017

Catching Up- From JBWR to GWC

     Since arriving home from a week away at Great Gull Island, I've been out but been wanting to keep my sightings in sequence. So this is a little bit of catch-up from last Saturday to yesterday.

Last week I visited Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge where Corey Rubin, a good friend put together with Chris Viaggio, an art show at the Refuge in its gallery space. It featured his photos and some of his paintings. It was very cool to see his photos, many of which I accompanied him and his girlfriend, Molly Adams (friend, coworker, and founder of the Feminist Bird Club) on to view- so it brought back fun memories of sights we all shared together. Here is more information of Corey and his work, you should Check it out (it's there for 2 months!):

After the opening of the show last weekend, Molly led a bird walk out to West pond, here were some of the sights:
A house wren inside a house intended for other species.... This house wren doesn't care about our rules.

2 young osprey in the nest being watched over by their diligent parent.

Spotted this one very gorgeous diamondback terrapin swimming in West pond.

They are gorgeous turtles and it is egg laying season for them. Many of them call JBWR their favorite nesting location.

A mockingbird atop a nest box.

A least tern hunting over the bay.

As the walk concluded, my husband and I lingered back-- as one of the two osprey practiced their flight in a comedic fashion. Perhaps, not realizing how well its wings work in providing lift and then realizing that you need to figure out a landing that doesn't involve ripping the nest apart...

It's sibling looks on, perhaps feeling inspired, or confusion for why one would do such ridiculous things, when your parents bring you everything you need.

In trying to nail that landing, this bird just rips up a mat of the nest and smacks its sibling in the face with it...

The adult bird takes the cue that maybe the perch would be something better and more solid to grab on to.

A very HAWKward landing! (see what I did there?)

"But I'm not done yet!"

This went on for quite some time, it was fun to watch a bird learn how to use its big wings that are so well adapted for catching the wind with ease for soaring.
Yesterday, I ventured into Green-Wood Cemetery to enjoy "my backyard," it has been some time since I crossed the street for a visit!
Enjoyed all the "house" birds.... ^^House Finch^^, House Wren, and the obligatory House Sparrows. This house finch though was quite dashing.

As usual, I found most enjoyment by visiting the Dell and Crescent Waters. I was given permission by this egret to sit and watch it as it hunted.
I like birding with others, but it feels extra special when I am alone with a bird and it just acts naturally. Its a special feeling that's hard to explain but super rewarding!

And this egret succeeded again....

And again!

I also enjoyed a drop in by a bird I consider most beautiful, a cedar waxwing. It hunted in the dangling branches of leaves that hung 15 feet away.

I love this egret, I assume the same one that returns to this area year after year. Shifting its attention between the Dell and Crescent Waters, depending on what it craves-- fish or frog.

That large spear of a bill can grab even the smallest fish with such precision, it's impressive!

Then a green heron flew in next to the egret, and the size difference is just hilarious.

It landed and strode past the egret, nervously until it approached the waters edge at a distance that it felt comfortable to share between itself and the egret.

Before leaving had a great peregrine fly overhead, upsetting some laughing gulls sharing the same airspace.