Archive for May, 2012

“E-A-G-L-E-S… EAGLES!”

Okay, it’s not football season yet (actually, I’m still trying to figure out what this year’s Phillies baseball season is all about…). But that doesn’t stop me from getting excited about eagles, especially when it’s an American Bald Eagle flying around near here.  Some photos from today’s walk around Okehocking Nature Preserve:

BAEA

BAEA

BAEA

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“Double the lad’s bet for me, you toad!”

Toad:

Unidentified Toad

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Birding while not busy…

We are in the thick of the intensive summer sessions at school, but we still find time now and then to go see what’s flying about. Here are a few recent pics.

First, a “twofer”:

Gray Catbird and Yellow Warbler

A couple of vireos:

Red Eyed Vireo

White Eyed Vireo

 

The very colorful Chestnut Sided Warbler:

Chestnut Sided Warbler

Everybody’s favorite, the Carolina Wren (in full throat):

Carolina Wren

And, keeping the mosquito population down, a couple of bug-eating birds:

Eastern Kingbird

Eastern Phoebe

A Red Winged Blackbird cutting loose:

Red Winged Blackbird

And lastly our old friend the Barred Owl, which continues to be seen on the Bridle Trail, Ridley Creek State Park (PA):

Barred Owl

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Philosophers – What you think we do, what we think we do, and what we do

A good one from Philosophy News:

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Barred Owl

We saw our first owl in the woods this morning. Our “lifer” was a Barred Owl who floated around near the old cemetery off the Bridle Trail at Ridley Creek State Park (PA).  Some photos:

Barred Owl

The owl’s presence caused quite a stir with the “locals.” Tufted Titmouses (Titmice?) in particular screeched worriedly among a general cacophony of yelling. A couple birds buzzed the owl, hoping to run it off.  But one brave Wood Thrush seemed completely unbothered. I shall call him “Rodney King,” as his behavior clearly begged the question: Why can’t we all get along?

Barred Owl and Wood Thrush

The owl has always been the symbol of wisdom (and so they are quite meaningful for those of us “lovers of wisdom”). This Barred Owl struck a pose of quiet contemplation, with a hint of world-weary melancholy.

Barred Owl in contemplation

It was a good thing very early this morning to have a close encounter with such a magnificent creature (but aren’t they all?). All good things come to an end, however, and our new friend flew off, perhaps in hopes of finding more hospitable surroundings for its pondering.

Barred Owl in flight

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A Walk in the Park

It was a lovely morning for a long walk in the woods of Ridley Creek State Park.  I got out there at 10 am (yeah, I know…) and spent about three and a half hours wandering.  It is a good way to clear the head.

As you can tell by now, I am not the best photographer. I’ve been too lazy to learn all the settings for my camera, to poor to get Photoshop (and too busy to figure out how to use it), not to mention I have poor eyesight and shaky hands. No matter. I take pictures anyway. But today would’ve been a good day to be fast and steady with the camera, because lots of little creatures kindly made themselves available for a photo shoot.

Check out the eyes (click for enlargement):

A wary fox

A fox a bit more relaxed

I really like Baltimore Orioles and their cheery whistling.  Here are some pics:

Baltimore Orioles at play (I think…)

Baltimore Oriole in flight

Ovenbirds are easy to hear (“teacher teacher Teacher Teacher TEACHER!”), but not so easy to see. But today one very kindly made himself available.

Ovenbird

Being still relatively new to birding, I hadn’t seen a Kentucky Warbler before this morning. I took about 70 shots of this guy, but “Old Shaky Hands” only came away with a few slightly worthy ones. Too bad, because this kind of closeup does not seem to happen every day.

A (blurry) Kentucky Warbler on the ground

Kentucky Warbler singing

Kentucky Warbler perched

Kentucky Warbler

I thought this was a nice shot of a Veery:

Veery

And, just because I like ’em, an Eastern Towhee:

Eastern Towhee

 

 

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Before the storm comes, birding…

Northern Flicker

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