Great Egret at Blackwater NWR.

We had a fairly sunny day with moderate wind, so I took the season’s last trip to Blackwater. It gets too buggy in the warm weather.

It wasn’t a bad day, but many of the water birds have moved on, and a few have moved in, including Egrets and Sandpipers.

At least four ospreys were active, and the Pelicans are still hanging out.

Northern Shoveler 2017-29

There are still many Northern Shovelers.

Gadwall 2017-7

A lone Gadwall was in the tidal pool.

Osprey 2017-3

Osprey 2017-5

Osprey 2017-6

Osprey 2017-4

This Osprey is working on his nest.

Bald Eagle 2017-86

Bald Eagle 2017-85

Bald Eagle 2017-84


Bald Eagle 2017-83

Bald Eagles were very active and nest building as well.

Greater Yellowlegs 2017-6

Greater Yellowlegs 2017-5

Greater Yellowlegs 2017-4

I saw at least 4 Greater Yellowlegs.

Turtle 70

I found this turtle crossing the road as I was leaving.

Wood Duck at Lake Artemesia.

I met Graeme at Lake Artemesia this morning, and we did reasonably well.  My first Wood Ducks of the season, and some departing Ring Necks  were a nice combination.

Other ducks, geese and a few Tree Swallows made for a good morning, with temps near 70 and not much breeze.

Graeme Simpson 9

Graeme Simpson, looking professionally dapper.

White Throated Sparrow 2017-4

This White Throated Sparrow landed quite near me.

Double Crested Cormorant 2017-1

This Double Crested Cormorant didn’t move for over an hour.

Tree Swallow 2017-8

Tree Swallow 2017-7

Many Tree Swallows were chasing bugs.

Ring Necked Duck 2017-9 Ring Necked Duck 2017-8

Ring Necked Duck 2017-10

I suspect Ring Necked Ducks will be gone soon.

Ruddy Duck 2017-2

Ruddy Duck 2017-3

This Ruddy Duck is molting into breeding plumage.

Pied Billed Grebe 2017-3

You can only see the “Pied” bill during breeding season.

Wood Duck 2017-4 Wood Duck 2017-3

Wood Duck 2017-1

This Wood Duck greeted me this morning.

Muskrat 16

This Muskrat may be working on his den.


Tree Swallow at Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center.

The weather man promised sunny, and we got sunny.  It was a little windy and cool, but  good enough.

I started at Terrapin, which was a little slow, but I got a couple of decent shots.

CBEC was better, as it has been lately, but still a little slow. There were many more Swallows than last week, and plenty of ducks, along with a pair of Osprey. It won’t be long.

Tree Swallow 2017-6

Most of the Tree Swallow nest boxes seem to be occupied now.

Northern Shoveler 2017-28

I don’t often see Northern Shovelers at CBEC.

Brown Thrasher 2017-1

My first Brown Thrasher of the season.

Red Winged Blackbird 2017-10

Red Winged Blackbirds are easy to find at this time of year.

Green Winged Teal 2017-13

Green Winged Teal 2017-11

This pair of Green Winged Teal was at Terrapin.

Northern Pintail 2017-35 Northern Pintail 2017-34

Northern Pintail 2017-36

This is a Northern Pintail hen.

Tree Swallow 2017-5

Tree Swallow 2017-6

Most of the Tree Swallow nest boxes seem to be occupied now.

Horned Grebe at Quiet Waters Park.

I stopped at Truxtun Park yesterday, without much lick. A couple of Geeses seem to setting up house, but there wasn’t much else.

I spent the morning at Quiet Waters, which was much better. I actually found several nice birds, though they didn’t all pose for me. Spring is coming!

South River 7

South River from Quiet Waters.

Canada Goose 2017-6 Canada Goose 2017-9 Canada Goose 2017-8 Canada Goose 2017-7 Canada Goose 2017-6

Canada Goose 2017-5

These Canada Geese were at Quiet Waters,.


Osprey 2017-1

These Osprey are mating.

Horned Grebe 2017-12

Horned Grebe 2017-13

Many Horned Grebes were around this morning.

Fox 67


Fox 66

Fox 69

Fox 68

I found this Fox as I entered the park this morning.


Tundra Swan at Terrapin Nature Park.

It’s been a slow few days. Slow birding and bad weather have slowed me a little, but I was back on the road today.

It was my first trip to Terrapin in a while, and it was decent. It was the first time I’ve seen a Tundra Swan there, and the Green Winged Teal actually stayed close enough for a decent image.

CBEC was good enough also, and I’ve got a few pics from Blackwater as well.

Chickadee 2017-2

A Chickadee close up is always good.

Tundra Swan 2017-60

Tundra Swan 2017-63

I caught these Tundra Swans as they landed at CBEC.

Tundra Swan 2017-62

Tundra Swan 2017-61

I’ve been going to Terrapin for 5 years, and this is the first Tundra Swan I’ve seen there.

Tree Swallow 2017-4

The CBEC nest boxes are getting busy.

Green Winged Teal 2017-9


Green Winged Teal 2017-10

The Terrapin Green Winged Teals are seldom so cooperative.

American White Pelican 2017-10

These American White Pelicans were at DeCoursey Bridge.

Pine Warbler 2017-1

Graeme found this Pine Warbler at Blackwater.

Downy Woodpecker 2017-2

This Downy Woodpecker was at the marsh edge.

Mockingbird 2017-1

I often pass up Mockingbirds, but I liked this pose.

Brown Headed Nuthatch 2017-7 Brown Headed Nuthatch 2017-6 Brown Headed Nuthatch 2017-5 Brown Headed Nuthatch 2017-4 Brown Headed Nuthatch 2017-3


Brown Headed Nuthatch 2017-8

A flock of Brown Headed Nuthatches was feeding in the pines.

Yellow Rumped Warbler 2017-2

Yellow Rumped Warblers will be migrating soon.

Northern Shoveler 2017-26

Northern Shoveler 2017-27

Northern Shovelers are still abundant.


Hooded Mergansers at Blackwater NWR.

It’s been slow for a few days, and the weatherman says the next few days will suck, so I decided to give Blackwater one last try.

It’s definitely Eagle time of year, and I saw many, as well as plenty of ducks. I also took a trip to DeCoursey Bridge again, in hopes of finding fishing Eagles.  There were actually many Eagles there, mostly juveniles, but they weren’t doing much fishing. The Pelicans were still there, though, and I got a couple of pics.

Tidal Pool 2

Blackwater Dawn.

Bald Eagle 2017-72

Bald Eagle 2017-75 Bald Eagle 2017-74

Bald Eagle 2017-73

At least 6-8 juvenile Bald Eagles were hanging out at DeCoursey bridge.

Red Winged Blackbird 2017-9

Red Winged Blackbirds were very active.

Snow Goose 2017-22

Many Snow Geese are still in residence.


Green Winged Teal 2017-8

Green Winged Teal 2017-7

These Green Winged Teal were at CBEC yesterday.

Great Blue Heron 2017-24

Great Blue Heron 2017-23

Great Blue Heron 2017-22

I saw many Great Blue Herons on this visit.

Northern Shoveler 2017-25

Northern Shovelers are still the most common duck.

Tundra Swan 2017-59

Tundra Swans will be gone very soon.

Killdeer 2017-7

Why do Killdeer hang out on the road surface so often?

American White Pelican 2017-8

American White Pelican 2017-7

American White pelicans are fond of Blackwater.

Hooded Merganser 2017-793

Hooded Merganser 2017-792 Hooded Merganser 2017-797

Hooded Merganser 2017-796 Hooded Merganser 2017-795

Hooded Merganser 2017-798

Hooded Merganser 2017-794

You can be nearly certain the Hooded Mergansers will spook when you get close.

American Avocet at Bombay Hook NWR.

I made the long trek to Bombay Hook this morning so I’d be sure of finding some worthwhile birds.  It’s a difficult time of year-not quite migration and not Winter.

Bombay Hook always pays off to some degree. The Avocets are always welcome, as are the Teal. I did see some nice raptors, but too distant for good images.

A worthwhile trip.

Killdeer 2017-6

Killdeer 2017-5

Several Killdeer were in the road when I arrived.

Northern Pintail 2017-33 Northern Pintail 2017-32

Northern Pintail 2017-31

Northern Pintail 2017-30

Northern Pintails are also very numerous.

Gadwall 2017-6

Gadwall 2017-5

Many Gadwall were in the shallowest part of the marsh.

Bufflehead 2017-49

Only a few Buffleheads were in residence.

Mallard 2017-11

Mallards were well represented.

Snow Goose 2017-21

A large flock of Snow Geese flew overhead.

Bald Eagle 2017-71

This Bald Eagle was trimming his nest.



Northern Shoveler 2017-24

Northern Shoveler 2017-23

Northern Shoveler 2017-22

Northern Shovelers are probably the most numerous duck.

Green Winged Teal 2017-6

Green Winged Teal 2017-5

Green Winged Teal 2017-5

I saw more Green Winged Teals than I did last time.

American Avocet 2017-2

American Avocet 2017-1

A large flock of American Avocets was feeding in the marsh.

Fox 65

I found this Fox as I was leaving.

American White Pelicans at DeCoursey Bridge.

I tried Patuxent South yesterday, and it was almost a complete bust. Very few birds and not much variety, but a Common Merganser saved the day.

Today I went back to Blackwater where I knew I’d find some good birds and it turned out OK. DeCoursey Bridge is just a few miles from Blackwater, and people have seen Eagles fishing there, so I took a look. No Eagles, but the Pelicans were a very nice surprise.

Turkey Vulture 2017-1

It was funny to see this Turkey Vulture on a Tree Swallow nest box.

Killdeer 2017-4 Killdeer 2017-3

Killdeer 2017-2

This pair of Killdeer are mating at Blackwater.

Great Blue Heron 2017-21

A good 25 or so Great Blue Herons flew over Blackwater.

Red Winged Blackbird 2017-7

Red Winged Blackbird 2017-8

Red Winged Blackbirds are displaying everywhere.

Snow Goose 2017-20

Hundreds of Snow Geese are still in the area.

Northern Shoveler 2017-19

Northern Shoveler 2017-20

Northern Shovelers are still very common.

Hooded Merganser 2017-791

Hooded Mergansers spook very easily.

Northern Pintail 2017-29

This seemed to be the only Northern Pintail at Blackwater.

American Coot 2017-3

American Coots always seem a little boring to me.

Domestic Goose 2017-1

I found these domestic Geese on the way to Blackwater.

Bald Eagle 2017-67 Bald Eagle 2017-66

Bald Eagle 2017-65

I saw many Bald Eagles today.

Cooper's Hawk 2017-5

Cooper's Hawk 2017-4

This Cooper’s Hawk flew off when he saw me.

Canada Goose 2017-4

Canada Goose 2017-3

These Canada Geese were at Patuxent,.

Common Merganser 2017-6

Common Merganser 2017-5

This is the first Common Merganser I’ve seen at Patuxent.

American White Pelican 2017-6

American White Pelican 2017-5

American White Pelican 2017-4

There were about 100 American White Pelicans at the bridge.

Greater Yellowlegs at Blackwater NWR.

It’s been very slow for a few days, so I decided to try Blackwater despite the very windy forecast. It was as windy as any day I’ve been out, and I actually had trouble holding the lens in the strongest gusts. The soaring birds seemed to like it, though, and there were plenty of birds in flight.

I also found Ring Necks and Gadwalls, which I don’t often see at Blackwater.

Chickadee 2017-1

This Chickadee was at CBEC yesterday.

Great Blue Heron 2017-20

Great Blue Heron 2017-19

Great Blue Heron 2017-18

I found this Great Blue Heron at CBEC yesterday.

Bald Eagle 2017-63

Bald Eagle 2017-62 Bald Eagle 2017-61

Bald Eagle 2017-60

This Bald Eagle is carrying a fish.

Bufflehead 2017-48

There’s always a few Buffleheads.

Ring Necked Duck 2017-7

I seldom see Ring Necked Ducks at Blackwater.

Tundra Swan 2017-58

Tundra Swan 2017-57

Tundra Swan 2017-56

An adult and a juvenile Tundra Swan.

Dunlin 2017-2

Dunlin 2017-1

This appears to be a flock of Dunlin.

Snow Goose 2017-19

Snow Goose 2017-18

A thousand or more Snow Geese are still wintering at Blackwater.

Gadwall 2017-4

This Gadwall was at Jonas Green Park.

Greater Yellowlegs 2017-2

Greater Yellowlegs 2017-1

A flock of 6-8 Greater Yellowlegs were foraging in the marsh.