Friday, June 29, 2012
It was particularly nice to enjoy this quiet time with this Spotted Sandpiper. Opportunities like this do not happen everyday.
There is no surpise quite as good as a totally unexpected surprise. I watched as it began to drill. Its head was in constant movement and I didn't want to get too close so my pictures don't do justice to this great bird. All my care didn't matter much, because this bird only stayed about two minutes and flew away. Nevertheless, I was quite satisfied that my drive along this northern route had once again paid off.
Another interesting spot I will share is the road to the school and the Lion's Club in Pouch Cove. I have found quite a bit of bird activity in this area, and I really expect something very special to show up along this road.
Monday, June 25, 2012
Judging by the amount of warblers I have seen carrying food, there will soon be many newcomers appearing in the woods. Maybe the birds will begin to sing a little more when their work of child rearing is complete.
Sunday, June 24, 2012
For more than a month, the warblers have been filling up the woods with sound and color. This year there seem to be so many Blackpoll warblers. I have records of Blackpolls on most every day that I have ventured out. Interesting, though, is that most of them are male. I have only seen one female Blackpoll, and that was very early in the season. I guess they are busy.
Up till now the males are still singing and are very inquisitive. Pish once and the male jumps out from the cover of the trees and sits high atop a tree to sing a high-pitched, thin tsi sound.
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Here is my first wren of any kind seen in Newfoundland. This one, a House Wren, was first heard and reported by Anne Hughes. Yesterday, I dropped by in the hope of seeing the bird and was advised to return in the morning. It is that time of the day the bird is in full song.
He has done a lot of work to document the very rare birds, but the House Wren ranks as rare, with sightings occurring less than annually. The work he has done on his web page is very helpful. For instance, what records are there relevant to the American White Pelican? How uncommon is a Snow Goose? Check Jared's site to learn more. Thanks to Jared for all of his work!
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Considering that most glimpses of birds are fleeting, it never hurts to build a wide collection of visions in the mind's eye to help with quick, on-the-spot identification. When these different birds appear, it is certainly worth pursuing them to get a picture or reach a level of satisfaction around the ID. At this time of the year, it is possible to see all sorts of unusual renditions of very familiar birds.
Monday, June 18, 2012
It is not easy to differentiate between the female American Black Duck and the female Mallard. There is so much hybridization among ducks that it is difficult to tell if a bird is a Black Duck, a Mallard or a hybrid. I am guessing the female pictured here is a Mallard because of the amount of orange on the beak, only a guess. If I had paid attention to the sound, I should have been able to identify them on the spot. The Black Duck says "Quack, Quack" and the Mallard says "Kwek, Kwek, Kwek." That may be the best clue to nail the ID.
I venture a guess that this female is an American Black Duck based on the greenish colored bill and the predominately gray face. Now, all of this begs the question, "How long have I been birding and still can't tell the difference between two of the most common species around?"
Sunday, June 17, 2012
On a gray day last week, I came upon this wet, hungry Gray Jay eating the leftovers of a carcass. I am guessing it is a rabbit.
This is a great time of the year to visit the woods in an attempt to see as many young as possible. I think of it as "study hall."