We’re due for a short period of foul weather, so I made the trek to Blackwater this morning to improve my chances of a good day.
It worked out OK. There’s still not a lot of birds, but the variety was good, and the weather was better than the reports suggested it would be.
I found more passerines than usual, but not much in the way of migrants.
The dock on Key Wallace Drive.
I haven’t seen many Field Sparrows anywhere lately.
Common Yellowthroats will be migrating South soon.
I wanted just a little better light for this Green Heron.
I wasn’t quite ready for this Belted Kingfisher, who flew in as I walked by.
I turned just in time to catch this Double Crested Cormorant swallowing his catch.
This appears to be a Caspian Tern, and I don’t often see them at Blackwater.
Many Forster’s Terns are feeding at Blackwater.
Great Blue Herons are the dominant wader at the moment.
Bald Eagles are slightly more visible now.
I’ve only seen a few Blue Grosbeaks at Blackwater.
I walked right into this Delmarva Fox Squirrel, who wasn’t as skittish as some of his fellow squirrels.
I met Graeme early, and we drove to Bombay Hook to see if we could get lucky. There have been Ibises seen, and it’s well into migration, so anything was possible.
It was not to be. There were certainly plenty of birds in good light, but nothing out of the ordinary save a very nice Savannah Sparrow.
We spent some time with the Egrets and Terns, and found some Sandpipers willing to come quite close. Not a great day, but good enough.
Many Snowy Egrets were feeding in the marsh.
I don’t often get this close to a Greater Yellowlegs.
Forster’s Terns were feeding quickly.
This Great Blue Heron shows how the light was nearly perfect.
I haven’t seen a Savannah Sparrow in quite a while.
I was at Sandy Point for sunrise, and didn’t take a single picture. That’s a lot of trips I’ve made without a decent sunrise.
I went to Terrapin afterwards, and it was a very active day. Many migrants were on the move, and I saw lots of movement in many different areas of the park. I didn’t get as many images, nor as much variety as I’d like, but it was good enough.
This Flycatcher was the first bird I found this morning.
A small flock of Cedar Waxwings was roaming the park.
I was lucky to spot this Palm Warbler.
This Osprey will be heading South soon.
I saw several Great Crested Flycatchers this morning.
This Scarlet Tanager is on the way South.
This Red Eyed Vireo took off just as I pressed the shutter.
This Baltimore Oriole was a surprise.
Several Chestnut-sided Warblers flew through my area.
I found 5 of these small Frogs this afternoon.
Five Lined Skinks are numerous at Quiet Waters.
With good weather promised, I decided to try a trip to Blackwater this morning. It wasn’t any kind of bonanza, but I did find a few interesting birds.
There’s still only a few wading birds compared to a few weeks ago, and I don’t know what to make of that.
I found only a single Greater Yellowlegs.
This appears to be a Field Sparrow.
Killdeer are started to appear in larger numbers.
Several Eastern Kkingbirds are stiil flycatching on Wildlife Drive.
A mixed flock of Tree and Barn Swallows was foraging along Wildlife Drive.
Severall Great Blue Herons were fishing in the marsh.
This Bald Eagle was making a lot of noise.
This Great Egret had much of the marsh to himself.
Forster’s Terns like to hang out on theses pilings.
These Brown Headed Nuthatches appeared to be having a lot of fun.
This Delmarva Fox Squirrel was just barely in range.
This Fox was prowling around the visitor center.
It was cloudy this morning, so I didn’t get to Terrapin until nearly 7:00. It started clearing up right away, so my timing was good.
There was plenty of migrant activity, but they were moving quickly and I didn’t get as many good images as I wanted. There were very few wading birds, which seems a little odd to me.
I stopped by Sandy Point on the way home and found a few Terns, which are beginning to be a favorite.
Seagull, goofing on the beach.
This Laughing Gull was bathing at Sandy Point.
Only a few Royal Terns are at Sandy Point.
About 10 Caspian Terns are spending time at Sandy Point.
This Barn Swallow was flying in an oval pattern, so I was able to get some flight shots.
I found this Brown Thrasher at Terrapin.
This Red Eyed Vireo is probably a migrant.
American Redstarts are still appearing in large numbers.
The poor light make this Yellow Warbler look too dark.
This is only my second Wilson’s Warbler, and the last one was at Terrapin as well.
We’ve had a little rain the last couple of days, so I haven’t been able to get out in the morning, my preferred time for photography.
I did manage to find a few bugs in the afternoon, and then I got an email about a rare bird at Sandy Point yesterday, so I made the trip despite the rain and traffic.
The Red-necked Phalarope was right where he was reported to be, and very cooperative,so I got some nice images. I don’t usually chase these rarities, but this one was close and worth the effort.
There are still 20 or so Caspian Terns at Sandy Point.
This sequence shows a Royal Tern apparently picking up, then dropping a stick.
This Red-necked Phalarope was foraging in small circles, as described by the Audubon guide. Audubon: “Phalaropes reverse the usual sex roles in birds: Females are larger and more colorful than males; females take the lead in courtship, and males are left to incubate the eggs and care for the young. Red-necked Phalaropes nest around arctic tundra pools and winter at sea. During migration they pause on shallow ponds in the west, where they spin in circles, picking at the water’s surface. However, most apparently migrate offshore, especially in the east. Despite their small size and delicate shape, they seem perfectly at home on the open ocean.”
It’s still a little slow around here, so I went back to Bombay Hook this morning. I’ve never seen so many Sandpipers in one place. There were many thousands feeding in the first pool. Apparently they stay until the tide comes in.
There wasn’t as much variety as usual, and many of the birds were at the distant side of the pools, but enough cooperated to get a few decent images. The Night Herons were much more visible than usual.
I found this Beaver at Lake Artemesia yesterday.
Many Goldfinches were feeding near the marsh.
Eagles are almost always in this single tree at Bombay Hook.
There were hundreds of Egrets, but most were too distant for good images.
I just barely caught this Semi-palmated Plover at it flew by.
Forster’s Terns are still present in large numbers.
I spooked this Green Heron near Finis Pool.
This Great Blue Heron was photobombed by a flock of Least Sandpipers.
This Blue Grosbeak was singing loudly as I entered the refuge.
Black Crowned Night Herons nest at Bombay Hook, and this juvenile is learning how to feed himself.
I tried Lake Artemesia for the first time in a while, and it was good enough. I found a decent warbler and some other migrants, a promising sign. A couple of huge caterpillars made as nice find as well.
I also stopped at Quiet Waters this afternoon, and found a few bugs.
This Cardinal posed nicely.
Several Wood Ducks were feeding near shore.
This Great Crested Flycatcher found a nice Cicada for breakfast.
At least two Green Herons were foraging in the lake.
This Chestnut Warbler was a nice find.
An odd looking bug.
Another Red Banded Hairstreak.
Two of the largest caterpillars I’ve ever seen.