Wood Duck at Blackwater NWR.

There’s still not much happening around here, so I went to Blackwater again this morning.

Things are definitely picking up, with many more ducks, more active eagles and a lot of sparrows.

Perfect light and a small flock of Wood Ducks made it a very good day.

Blackwater Dawn 30

Blackwater Dawn 29

Blackwater Dawn.

Northern Shoveler 2017-46

Northern Shoveler 2017-47

Northern Shovelers have returned, but not in large numbers.

Bald Eagle 2017-204 Bald Eagle 2017-203

Bald Eagle 2017-205

Many Bald Eagles were hunting this morning. I saw 4 in the air at one time.

Wood Duck 2017-99 Wood Duck 2017-98

Wood Duck 2017-100

A female and first year male Wood Duck. The first I’ve seen at Blackwater.

Hooded Merganser 2017-801

Hooded Merganser 2017-802

A male Hooded Merganser.

Mallard 2017-44

I saw many, many Mallards.

Ruddy Duck 2017-11

Ruddy Ducks are still scarce.

Northern Pintail 2017-47 Northern Pintail 2017-46 Northern Pintail 2017-45 Northern Pintail 2017-44

Northern Pintail 2017-48

A large flock of Northern Pintails was the largest I’ve ever seen.

Cackling Goose 2017-9

Canada Goose 2017-56

Hundreds of Canada Geese were feeding in the marsh.

Ground Hog 4

Groundhogs don’t often sit still long enough for a portrait.

Mute Swan at Lake Artemesia.

It was really cold this morning (21), so I wore my ski pants and carried my gloves. I’m not as indifferent to cold as I used to be.

Cold brings the ducks, however, and a  juvenile Mute Swan. A very surprising, very late Osprey was a treat as well.

Lake Artemesia 93

Lake Artemesia.

Ring Necked Duck 2017-14

Ring Necked Duck 2017-13

A large flock of Ring-necked Ducks was cruising the lake.

Osprey 2017-107

Prior to this, the latest I’ve seen Ospreys was October 31.

Robin 2017-7

This Robin seemed to be enjoying the sunshine.

Mute Swan 2017-3 Mute Swan 2017-2

Mute Swan 2017-4

This is the first time I’ve seen a Mute Swan at Artemesia.

Deer-68

This young buck let me get very close, and even ignored a nearby dog.

Tundra Swan at Blackwater NWR.

Between the weather and a lack of birds, it’s been a while since I had anything to post.

I got to Blackwater yesterday, and it wasn’t spectacular, but it was good enough. It’s still that time of year when the winter ducks haven’t arrived in any numbers, and most of the migrants have gone.

I did find some Swans, and the Eagles are still abundant, so I do have a few images worthy of my audience.

Truxtun Park 9

Another try at the Truxtun Park bridge.

Carolina Wren 2017-9 Carolina Wren 2017-8

Carolina Wren 2017-8

I found this Carolina Wren at Greenbury Point.

Bald Eagle 2017-202 Bald Eagle 2017-198

Bald Eagle 2017-200

Good light and a few Autumn leaves make all the difference.

Dark Eyed Junco 2017-2

First Dark Eyed Junco of the year.

Northern Pintail 2017-43

I found only a few Northern Pintails.

Great Blue Heron 2017-121

Great Blue Heron 2017-122

Great Blue Herons are still plentiful.

Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-14

This Yellow Rumped Warbler was also at Greenbury Point.

Hooded Merganser 2017-800

I saw two Hooded Mergansers at Quiet Waters.

Black Duck 2017-7

Two Black Ducks were feeding at Quiet Waters.

Tundra Swan 2017-64

Tundra Swan 2017-65

Tundra Swans are just arriving in numbers.

 

 

Northern Pintail at Backwater NWR.

I left early to get to Blackwater in time for sunrise, which wasn’t very interesting. I did get a few more shots at the dock on Key Wallace Drive, though.

It was a Bald Eagle kind of day. There were plenty of them, and they seemed less shy than usual, allowing me to get quite close a few times.

A few ducks have started to arrive, but the egrets and herons are far fewer.

Dock 9

The dock at Key Wallace Drive.

Bald Eagle 2017-192 Bald Eagle 2017-191 Bald Eagle 2017-190 Bald Eagle 2017-189 Bald Eagle 2017-188 Bald Eagle 2017-186

Bald Eagle 2017-185

I’m not sure what got these Eagles so excited.

Great Blue Heron 2017-119

Great Blue Heron 2017-120

Several Great Blue Herons were fishing in the marsh.

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-115

There are always a few Double Crested Cormorants hanging around the dock.

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-114

There’s a nice balance in this photo of a Double Crested Cormorant.

Northern Pintail 2017-41

Northern Pintail 2017-42

The first Northern Pintails I’ve seen at Blackwater this year.

 

American Avocet at Bombay Hook.

Once again I drove too far and didn’t see much. It didn’t help that Bear Swamp Pool was closed for construction shortly after I arrived.

The bird with the biggest numbers was the Least Sandpiper, and even they weren’t as numerous as in the past.

I saw more eagles than usual, and a few ducks, but migration has slowed for the moment. Several Foxes were around but the low light prevented good images.

Red Winged Blackbird 2017-105

Red Winged Blackbirds are far less numerous.

 

Northern Shoveler 2017-45

Northern Shovelers are still present.

Green Winged Teal 2017-26

Some male Green Winged Teals have finally shown up.

Northern Pintail 2017-40

Green Winged Teal 2017-25

Savannah Sparrow 2017-8

Another Savannah Sparrow.

Swamp Sparrow 2017-3

Swamp Sparrows were well represented.

Northern Pintail 2017-39

Northern Pintails were foraging in the marsh.

American Avocet 2017-10

American Avocet 2017-11

I found only one small flock of American Avocets.

 

 

Black Duck at Blackwater NWR.

I made the trek yesterday, and it wasn’t very productive. The migrating ducks haven’t made it this far yet, and many of the refuge regulars have moved on.

I did manage a few respectable photos, but I’ll probably wait a few weeks before returning.

Blackwater Dawn 28

Blackwater Dawn.

Great Egret 2017-149

Great Egret 2017-148

Several Great Egrets were foraging along Wildlife Drive.

Bald Eagle 2017-184

Bald Eagles were plentiful, as usual.

Red Headed Woodpecker 2017-79

Red Headed Woodpecker 2017-80

This is a juvenile red Headed Woodpecker.

Great Blue Heron 2017-118

Several Great Blue Herons were patiently fishing.

Red Headed Woodpecker 2017-79

Red Headed Woodpecker 2017-80

This is a juvenile red Headed Woodpecker.

American Robin at Ellen O. Moyer Park.

I started this morning at Truxtun Park, where the water was so high the bridge was partly submerged. Good light and a few good birds.

Ellen O. Moyer Park is a small park at 7228 Edgewood Road in Annapolis. I’ve been there several times in the last few years without finding much, but I gave it another shot this morning. The flooding was so bad downtown that traffic out of town was backed up everywhere, so it made sense to stay local.

This park has a tall wooded hill and a good waterfront vista, so I’ll keep trying.

Moyer 1

West entrance to the park.

Cardinal 2017-18

Cardinals always look good in evergreens.

Great Blue Heron 2017-117 Great Blue Heron 2017-115 Great Blue Heron 2017-114

 

Great Blue Heron 2017-116

Great Blue Herons have been very active at Truxtun recently.

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-110 Double Crested Cormorant 2017-109

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-111

The water was very high at Truxtun, and this Double Crested Cormorant was almost at the end of the creek.

Red Tailed Hawk 2017-5

Red Tailed Hawk 2017-6

I’ve seen a lot of hawks at Truxtun, but they don’t always pose as well.

Robin 2017-5 Robin 2017-4 Robin 2017-3

Robin 2017-6

This Robin was thoroughly enjoying his bath.

Mallard 2017-42

Mallard 2017-43

If you didn’t know, a Mallard’s feet are orange.

Squirrel 12

This Squirrel was eating well at Ellen O. Moyer park.

Wood Duck at Lake Artemesia.

I met Graeme early at Lake Artemesia, and we made several trips around the lake, then spent an hour or so on the Indian Creek trail.

There were Yellow Rumps everywhere, as well as Kinglets and Blue Jays.  We found a pair of Wood Ducks and a Cuckoo that’s been hanging around the lake for three days.

Beautiful weather, good company and some nice birds. Couldn’t ask for more.

Lake Artemesia 92

Lake Artemesia.

 

White Throated Sparrow 2017-5

First White Throated Sparrow of the season.

Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-13

Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-11 Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-10 Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-9

Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-8

I caught this Yellow Rumped Warbler as he was taking off.

Downy Woodpecker 2017-4

Two Downy Woodpeckers were foraging in the area.

Great Blue Heron 2017-108

This Great Blue Heron was patiently fishing in the lake.

Song Sparrow 2017-9

A Song Sparrow in good light.

Beaver 125 Beaver 126 Beaver 127 Beaver 128

Beaver 129

This Beaver was unusually cooperative.

Graeme Simpson 16

Graeme focuses on a distant bird.

 

Northern Pintail at Blackwater NWR.

I went to Blackwater this morning in hopes of finding some ducks, and got lucky.  Pintails and Shovelers were there in modest numbers, along with a few Sparrows, Geese and Flickers.

The weather couldn’t have been better. Several Eagles and Cormorants cooperated as well.

There will be many more ducks later, but today was a good harbinger.

Dock 8

The Key Wallace dock at 7:00 AM.

Bald Eagle 2017-180 Bald Eagle 2017-179

Bald Eagle 2017-181

This Bald Eagle allowed me to get very close.

Northern Flicker 2017-8

Northern Flicker 2017-9

Northern Flickers are migrating.

Great Egret 2017-147

I saw 3-4 Great Egrets.

Northern Pintail 2017-38

Northern Pintail 2017-37

All the Northern Pintails and Shovelers appeared to be first year birds.

 

Forster's Tern 2017-131

This Forster’s Tern was hovering right in front of me.

Wild Turkey at Sandy Point State Park.

I managed to drop my camera and break a few things, so both lens and camera spent a couple of weeks in the shop, but I’m back in business now.

I’ve been hanging out locally with my 70-300mm Nikkor, and I found a few close enough for decent shot. Yesterday I got to Bombay Hook, which was unusually slow.

It’s good to have my tools at hand again.

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-106

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-107

An unusual pose for a Double Crested Cormorant.

Northern Pintail 2017-37

First Northern Pintail of the season.

Savannah Sparrow 2017-7

Savannah Sparrows are still easy to find.

Ruddy Duck 2017-7

First Ruddy Duck of the season.

Mallard 2017-39

Very cool Mallards.

Least Sandpiper 2017-11

There were hundreds of Least Sandpipers.

Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-6

I found this Yellow Rumped Warbler (FOS) at Wooton’s Landing.

Eastern Phoebe 2017-1

This Eastern Phoebe was also at Wooton.

Ruby Crowned Kinglet 2017-1

A Ruby Crowned Kinglet from Wooton.

Mallard 2017-35

Mallard 2017-36 Mallard 2017-37 Mallard 2017-34

Mallard 2017-33

Truxtun Park always has a few Mallards.

Canada Goose 2017-52 Canada Goose 2017-53 Canada Goose 2017-51

Canada Goose 2017-50

Many Canada Geese spend time at Truxtun Park.

Green Winged Teal 2017-23 Green Winged Teal 2017-22 Green Winged Teal 2017-21 Green Winged Teal 2017-20

Green Winged Teal 2017-24

Green Winged Teal were very numerous.

Wild Turkey 2017-2

Wild Turkey 2017-3

Several Wild Turkeys were foraging by the side of the road.

 

Black Squirrel 3

I often see this Black Squirrel, but he doesn’t pose most of the time.

Squirrel 9

Squirrel 8

You can’t go wrong with a baby Squirrel.

Squirrel 11

This Squirrel hangs out at my front door.