“Perfect weather” is getting boring, so let me say it was a typical Spring day. I went back to Wooton for the third straight day, and it didn’t disappoint. I got my best Parula to date, and an Orchard Oriole posed very well. A late trip to Truxtun was curtailed by threatening skies, but a Red Fox justified the trip.
Cardinals are in full song everywhere.
This Fox was looking right at me as I entered Truxtun Park.
Common Yellowthroats seem to be the most common warbler at Wooton.
Great Blue Herons fly overhead frequently.
White Eyed Vireos can be heard many places in the park.
Singing males, like this Orchard Oriole, will often ignore the photographer.
The song of the Tufted Titmouse can be heard in most MD woods.
I’ve seen several Northern Parulas, but these are my best photos to date.
Blue Gray Gnatcatchers have become regulars in the last week or so.
This Red Tailed Hawk was perched in the same tree yesterday, and I scared him off. I approached more subtly today.
I had pretty much determined to go back to Wooton’s after yesterday’s bonanza, and the perfect weather just confirmed my plan.
After performing a couple of necessary chores, I set out around 7:45 and arrived at Wooton near 8:15.
The variety wasn’t as good, but the White Eyed Vireo was a first, and many birds were willing to pose.
Cornell:”A small and secretive bird of shrubby areas of the eastern and southern United States, the White-eyed Vireo is more noticeable for its explosive song than its looks.”
I watched this Bluebird for a while, and he seemed determined to beat this grub to death by slamming it against the branch.
This Tree Swallow was gathering nesting material.
This Blue Gray Gnatcatcher was feeding her young. Look closely to see the well camouflaged nest.
Common Yellowthroats were singing all along the marsh trail.
Butterflies are beginning to appear in large numbers. I believe this is a Two Tailed Swallowtail.
I haven’t seen many Beavers out in the open like this guy.
There was more than a little luck involved in getting this Belted Kingfisher.
A near perfect day, weather-wise. Lots of sun, warm temps and lots of birds!
I arrived early, and spotted a warbler right away, followed by a large variety of birds who wanted their pictures taken. The Prothonotary is a first for me.
I’ve seen a lot of Song Sparrows.
Carolina Wrens seem to enjoy posing.
I haven’t seen many of these Mourning Cloak butterflies.
I don’t recall getting a picture with the Northern Water Snake’s tongue sticking out before.
This Orchard Oriole was deep in shadow and I didn’t realize what it was until I uploaded it.
I’ve only seen a few Goldfinches this year.
All you need is good light and a Bluebird .
I found this Yellow Rumped Warbler on a quick trip to Truxtun Park this afternoon.
Chipping Sparrows are getting abundant.
This is about as close as I’ve ever gotten to a Spotted Sandpiper.
I saw this Common Yellowthroat Warbler as soon as I entered the park.
Blue Gray Gnatcatchers were in every area of the park.
Cornell: “The name “Prothonotary” refers to clerks in the Roman Catholic church, whose robes were bright yellow.”
Another beautiful day! I waited a bit for the Sun to get higher, then set olut for Possum/Greenbury Points in hopes of seeing more migrants. The Black and White Warbler was a nice find, but he was the only warbler.
After lunch I took a brief trip to Truxtun Park where I wasn’t as lucky as yesterday.
This Osprey was enjoying a fresh caught breakfast.
This House Sparrow was taking a dust bath on the foot bridge.
Northern Rough Winged Swallows will be regulars at Truxtun for a while.
I believe this is the first Chipping Sparrow I’ve seen at Truxtun.
Spring Warblers are often quite beautiful, like this Black and White Warbler.
Who can pass up a Cardinal?
I’m quite sure I haven’t seen a Royal Tern at Possum Point before.
Even the common House Finch can look good in the right setting.
Finally, a real Spring day complete with Sun and decent temperatures. A quick review of my options led me to Terrapin, where a few nice birds posed for me, followed by an afternoon trip to Truxtun Park where I was glad to see a few migrants finally arriving. The bright Sun led me to overexpose several otherwise good pictures, which is annoying, but educational. Note:
My ID was too hasty, as these are Least Terns.
I found this Black and White Warbler at Truxtun Park, which suggests more migrants will be arriving soon.
This Blue Headed Vireo was well under the canopy.
This Cooper’s Hawk flew right over my head.
There were several Snowy Egrets in the marsh pond.
At least one pair of Wood Ducks is nesting at Terrapin.
This Carolina Wren was singing for a mate.
As I recall, I didn’t see Tree Swallows at Terrapin last year.
Bluebirds are doing well.
Cardinals were singing in every corner of the park.
Red Bellied Woodpeckers have been scarce lately.
Ospreys were very active today.
It’s fun to try to catch these fast moving Least Terns in flight.
Rabbits are starting to appear at most places I go.
Another cold and cloudy Spring day; the kind that makes you wonder if it’s worth going out at all. I really hate seeing a good bird in bad light, but I went anyway.
A few good birds showed up, and the photos are passable, but I wish…
The ponds at Wooton are quite small, and an Osprey looks out of place.
There’s a large population of Bluebirds at Wooton.
I haven’t seen many Great Egrets, so this bird was a nice surprise. Cornell: “The elegant Great Egret is a dazzling sight in many a North American wetland. Slightly smaller and more svelte than a Great Blue Heron, these are still large birds with impressive wingspans. They hunt in classic heron fashion, standing immobile or wading through wetlands to capture fish with a deadly jab of their yellow bill. Great Egrets were hunted nearly to extinction for their plumes in the late nineteenth century, sparking conservation movements and some of the first laws to protect birds.”
The Belted Kingfishers at Wooton spook easily and it’s hard to get close.
This Goldfinch hasn’t finished his Spring molt yet.
My first Common Yellowthroat of the year.
I saw several Great Blue Herons.
This Pileated Woodpecker and his mate were squawking loudly and darting from tree to tree as I arrived.
With the promise of sunnier weather and an accomplished guide, I decided to go back to Bacon Ridge and see if I could do better. Dan Haas, the AABC led 6-8 people through the Bacon Ridge Preserve and I was able to see many more birds.
The photography was challenging, as the canopy limits the available light, and many of the birds were moving quickly, necessitating the use of hand-held photography, but I’m happy enough with the results.
Cornell: “A small, inconspicuous bird of the forest floor, the Ovenbird is one of the most characteristic birds of the eastern forests. Its loud song, “teacher, teacher, teacher,” rings through the summer forest, but the bird itself is hard to see.”
This lovely Hooded Warbler was foraging on the forest floor and I was lucky get usable images.
Cornell: “Distinctive in both plumage and behavior, the Black-and-white Warbler forages for insects while creeping along the trunks and branches of trees. Common in summer throughout the eastern United States and Canada, it has an unusually extensive winter range that extends from Florida to Venezuela and Colombia.”
I would never have seen this Worm Eating Warbler without the help of the good birders in our party.
These Barn Swallows were taking a break.
This Cliff Swallow was hanging out with the Barn Swallows. He’s probably headed North to his breeding grounds
Yellow Rumped Warblers are not hard to find in the Spring.
We saw several Spotted Sandpipers, but they spooked as soon as we got close.
There was a sponsored bird walk at Bacon Ridge Natural Area this morning, and I attended. I didn’t do well, but I did come across an Eastern Meadowlark, a bird I haven’t seen in many years. I stopped at Tawes Gardens on the way home and got another look at the resident Red Shouldered Hawk. A later trip to Truxtun Park produced nothing of note.
He was a bit distant, but this Eastern Meadowlark was a nice find.
There were three kinds of swallows, including this Northern Rough Winged Swallow
These Barn Swallows were cruising the containment ponds.
Tree Swallows were hunting right alongside the Barn Swallows.
This Red Shouldered Hawk was settling into her nest as I arrived.
I got out briefly yesterday, but only got a few images, which I’m posting tonight.
I had decided yesterday to go to Terrapin, but the weather was so lousy I almost stayed home.
Clouds and an occasional light sprinkle were discouraging, but I did manage a couple of decent shots.
Deer have been scarce lately.
I’m not a big sparrow fan, but these White Throated Sparrows look good in breeding plumage.
This Snowy Egret probably spent the Winter in Central America.
This Bluebird was hanging out in Truxtun Park.
This Brown Thrasher was singing loudly for a mate.
Work is interfering with birding once again, but when people need their computers fixed I have to respond.
I didn’t get started ’til late, and I went to Governor’s Bridge Park because some good birds have been reported there. It was virtually a complete waste of time. I would never have imagined you could walk in such good habitat for nearly two hours without seeing any migrants and barely any small birds at all. A mystery.
I stopped at Truxtun Park on the way home, and did better in the first ten minutes than in all the time I spent at Governor’s Bridge.
This Dark Eyed Junco should be heading to Canada to breed soon.
This Mallard hen is successfully raising a family.
Cornell: “The Blue-headed Vireo is the easternmost form in the “Solitary Vireo” complex. Formerly considered one species, three species now are recognized. In appearance it is the most brightly colored of the three.”
Cornell: “Males usually gather food for the nest, while females feed the nestlings. The young birds start by eating bits of larvae, then grasshoppers, moths, and spiders. One Hermit Thrush has been seen trying to give a nestling a salamander more than 1.5 inches long.”
The White Throated Sparrow is another Canadian breeder.
This Tufted Titmouse was foraging in Truxtun Park.