Monday, 31 December 2018

Greater Yellowlegs - The Chase and the Catch

In late Summer during our extended drought it was quite fun watching these birds chase down the remaining fish in the ponds as they were drying up. Probably not a lot of fun for the fish but the birds were having a feast. I watched one Lesser Yellowlegs swallow a fish that looked too big for it's thin neck but somehow the bird managed it. I think at various times there were as many as 40-50 birds involved in the pursuit in one relatively small pond.


Thursday, 27 December 2018

Buff-breasted, Baird's and Stilt Sandpipers

At one time on September 3 all three of these species could be found in the same pond at Hemeon's Head. I was there to photograph the Stilt Sandpiper when the other two species flew in. They are all uncommon to rare in the area. My best shots of the Stilt however occurred on the following day.

Stilt Sandpiper

Baird's Sandpiper

Buff-breasted Sandpiper

Wednesday, 26 December 2018

American Woodcock

I know this bird had been hanging around my yard for several days before the day I photographed it on September 4.  They are exceptionally hard to spot on the ground if they see you first, since their first instinct is to freeze. My usual sightings are of  birds that suddenly explode into the air when you're almost about to step on them since they blend in so well with their surroundings. 

Confusing Fall Warblers

A collection of confusing and not so confusing warblers from this past Fall season. Dates and locations are provided for some of the less commonly occurring species.

Palm Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Mourning Warbler  - September 16,  Hemeon's Head

Yellow Warbler - female

Prairie Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

Magnolia Warbler

Yellow Warbler -male

Black and White Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Yellow-breasted Chat   -  October 6,  Hemeon's Head

Common Yellowthroat - female

Common Yellowthroat - male

Bay-breasted Warbler  - August 29,  Hemeon's Head

American Redstart

Cape May Warbler

Nashville Warbler

Blackpoll Warbler

Tuesday, 25 December 2018

Northern Waterthrush

Another bird I rarely see is the Northern Waterthrush. I think they can be a little hard to find since they spend most of their time near the ground in dense foliage and are usually silent in the Fall. I did see a handful of birds this year however, and I've been told they are one of the more common warblers mist netted for banding on Brier Island in late Summer - early Fall. The bird pictured here was found at Hemeon's Head on September 3.

Cape May Warblers

I saw more Cape May Warblers this Fall than in any other previous year. Maybe because I happened to be out more than in other years when the majority of birds were passing through during their Fall migration. I started seeing them around the end of August and most were gone by late September.

Magnolia Warblers - Fall Plumage

Here are a few shots of some Magnolia Warblers I came across this past Fall birding season. The first at West Head, the others on the road to Hemeon's Head. One of our most common warbler species.

Blue-headed Vireo

I haven't posted for awhile, time to start getting caught up. Starting with Blue-headed Vireo shots, the bird in the top photo was one I found behind my house one day in late August. The other two shots are of a bird I found in late September. They may both be juveniles.