Tuesday, April 24, 2018

No Thermals Necessary

     I was pretty stoked to spend the day outside in a t-shirt. I have a really cool watch sunburn/tan as a result. The last few days out required mittens, winter hats, and thermal layers.
     Today, there felt to be less birds than the other days. While still attaining a 47 species day list, there were times of walking where it felt pretty sparse. But honestly, with the weather today, I am not complaining about anything, soaking up the sun was surely a highlight of everything today.
     I met a nice bird club member along the way, I never got his name but we shared what we saw, photos of our favorite birds, and recalling moments captured with cameras and our memories. That's also a highlight of birding- there are some really great people out there who care so much about the little feathered creatures I adore so much.
     I still got to add a few birds to my year list, which was also a nice treat!
FOY Northern waterthrush!
A terrible picture but it grabs the essence of why it's not a Louisiana Waterthrush - I think NOWA's are a bit more "sloppy" looking- they are super streaky, from chin to belly. Also their eyebrow stripe is just as creamy in color as their belly. LOWA's just look neat and refined in appearance, their chin is clean and their eyebrow is white.

The sun shining so bright made the common grackles look so beautiful, so I tried to photograph one. And it was carrying around discarded fishing line. While it might make for decent nesting material, it is a threat to wildlife as it often has hooks attached or it ensnares animals.

It makes me sad to see. On my walks I try to always pick up some of the trash I find and I dispose of it in receptacles with lids or I put rocks in it (like plastic bags) to weigh them down so they don't just fly out again.

A little love for the overlooked female and immature butter-butts out there.

This guy comes up to me and asks, "are you a birder?"
Part of me always wants to say "no, I wear these binoculars to creep on unsuspecting people in the park." What does one expect as a response to such a question.
Anyway, then he says how he saw a "big ass heron and just had to tell someone."
All while his dog jumped all over me - and didn't think that was not rude or apologize.

I told him that unfortunately there is no species of heron called a "big ass heron," but I reassured him he saw a great blue heron I also told him that he should look out more, they are quite common to see in the park.
I should have also told him he should consider some positive reinforcement training and teach his dog to not jump on strangers in the park...

Anyway, when I think I finally got a good photo of a yellow-throated warbler, I catch one singing its little heart out!
I am so happy I recognized the song of this warbler because it helped me find two today. I also now am noticing that they can really project their voice! They got some pipes!

Also, this bird does great impressions of pine cones.

This raccoon is doing it right.
A perfect, warm, sun-lit nappy spot!

Now, look at how this bird is just so elegant looking in comparison to the first photo of the NOWA. And that is aside from the fact that the first photo is low-qual.

White eyebrows, clean chin- we have a LOWA!

Also, I love this bird just wading through the stream near the Neathermead Arches. This bird also gave me some of the better looks and photos than I have had otherwise even with photographing through a chain-link fence!

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