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In starting a new thread, about the only images that I have are of Bald Eagles. Activity is slowly picking up until the approximate peak migration time frame around Thanksgiving week. So here are a few photos. Lots of juvenile Bald Eagles around but they are not nearly as photogenic.
We just came from the previous thread which has an awful lot of excellent photos. Here is the link in case you missed them.
Wow, Linth, I'm so glad the eagles are back! I'm with the others, that third photo is to die for! Thanks for starting the new thread with a group of gorgeous photos.
Lily, your flicker in that last thread is a pretty one and probably a yellow-shafted northern flicker which is normally found in your area. My intergrade flickers are all different. They may have the black malar and red crescent of your flicker, but their tails are red compared to your yellow ones, hence they become a hybrid or intergraded. It's really interesting to see all the differences in colors with these birds.
GP, love those buntings!
Here's a fox sparrow, a hermit thrush, an acorn woodpecker stocking its granery with acorns, and a nuttall's woodpecker.
Thanks Duc on the additional info. on the Northern Flickers, I need to learn more about them. How I'd like to see those Acorn Wps. They're such hard-workers! How do they defend or safeguard their winter stocks from Squirrels and Chipmonds?
Linth, Thanks much for solving that mystery on the Great Egret. I should have figured out that it was converted to B&W. Those eagle shots are quite a treat to see. I agree about #3 being exceptional. We have a few eagle nests down in my area of Texas, but not very many, so when we see them, it is a big deal.
GP, Beautiful shot of those Painted Buntings! I love that they match your bird bath! LOL.
Duc, Fantastic shots! The one of the Acorn WP with his stash is a wonderful behavior capture. I'm pretty sure you could sell that shot to a nature type magazine. Appreciate the info on the Flickers. I see some every once in a while around here, so I will pay more attention next time.
The Painted Buntings are incredibly beautiful, GP.
Great shots, as always, duc. Love the Woodpeckers. What a shot of those storage holes.
Here's a Pacific Heron that's made itself at home at the local lake over the past few months. I've never seen one of these birds before and this one is on its own. Really distant shots. Even to get these, I had to tread very, very cautiously through the grasses, listening for the odd tiger snake, which love long grass in wetland areas. It looks like its got a suture line down its neck.
Next, a couple of Sacred Ibis then a Pink-eared Duck with three ducklings.
Margaret, Fantastic captures! That heron is beautiful! So glad you got to see it and share some photos! The pink-eared duck with ducklings is adorable. Hard to pick a favorite, but I think the Cockatoo in flight gets my vote. Beautiful bird and beautiful photo!
GG, I'm not just cracking up. I'm ROFLMAO. I'm hoping you mean "flip-flops?" LOL. Thong has a whole new meaning these days. And, anyone slogging around in the marsh in a thong... well, let's just say the mental picture is too much.
I caught this Great Egret with his/her catch. I took a whole series of images, but missed the final event. Let's just say it ended well for the Egret, not so well for his lunch. I was actually starting to feel sorry for that little rodent.
Ha ha ha. I thought the same thing when I read what you had written about the thongs, GG. I know that you refer to them as flip-flops and that "thong" means something different - except over here where thong can mean one of two items of apparel.
My fall birds have arrived along with some winter ones, 1.Black-cap Chickadee,2.Northern Flicker,3.Nuthatch. I was just looking outside the door and there the Northern Flicker was eating the suet cake on the tree.
Beautiful photos everyone! I hate to say this, but I have never seen a Bald Eagle outside of a zoo, which I am truly sad about! Even when my husband & I went to the West Coast we did not see any!!! hahahahaha. Thank you for this thread, I am new to bird watching yet am quickly making it a hobby!!
Thank you all for your kind comments. Photographing moving Bald Eagles can be a real challenge. When they decide to hit the water, you don't have a lot of time to get them in focus. I usually miss quite a number of what could be potentially good photos. And, for whatever reason, 75% of the time they hit the water with their tail facing my direction. And, then you have the lighting to deal with. I even pulled a muscle in my back while twisting and turning in trying to keep up with them. Obviously, the closer they are the more difficult to follow them, especially with a 500mm lens.
Margaret, that Sacred Ibis does look like it has sutures down its front-gorgeous photos all of them. That Red-tailed Cockatoo is so beautiful.
Patti, great job of sticking with the egret while it was playing with the rodent (poor little one).
Emptyeyes, cute photos of your birds too.
Cindy, welcome and keep looking.
Linth, more wows on those photos. The eagles looked like they were having a great time. I wish mine would stay close enough to get pictures like yours.
This bald eagle was more interested in the lake than me taking photos from my deck.
Here's a cute northern flicker enjoying the berries.
A red-tailed hawk passing by me.
And, a pair of California towhees.
Nanny, wow, such a great variety of birds and that red-bellied with your metal bird is adorable. You sure provide a great assortment of food to your little ones.
Linth, these last pictures are all just exceptional. So clear and sharp. Please tell me you're using a tripod. Can you tell if there's something in the juvie's talons. It looks like maybe a piece of fish?
The yellow-rumped warblers are beginning to come to my second floor deck to look for the peanut butter log and I haven't put it out yet. They look all over like they know it should be there-so cute.
duc, yes, I am using a tripod - a Wimberley head on a Gitzo tripod. I couldn't ask for a better combination. I'm shooting at 36 megapixels so it is not very forgiving in camera shake. Even with a stable tripod one can still get some shutter vibration. I'm still trying to perfect the technique somewhat by putting one hand on the midpoint of the "camera/lens" to eliminate some of the vibration. You can lock up the mirror but I think that is only good for one photo at a time. I'm usually shooting a continuous flurry of photos. That being said, all of these photos were taken at 1/2500 sec., f/8 and auto ISO, at 500mm. I use auto-ISO because going from a sky shot to a water shot, lighting conditions change drastically. My exposure bias is set at -0.7. I prefer underexposing the image slightly. Of course, most importantly is how fast your lens will autofocus and continue to focus accurately on a moving subject.
Thanks for the info Linth. I think I'm going to try and put a hand on the camera/lens too. Right now I just have a cheap tripod (hubbie gave me a choice of putting in wood floors or getting a new tripod-I chose the floors!) but later on I'm going to get the new tripod.
Nanny, your little butter butt is cute. Glad you're seeing lots of them, I've just seen 3 so far.
Fabulous shots of the eagles in action Linth. Wow! Duc, I see the scrub jay but where is the w.c. sparrow? It's exciting to see birds during their migration. Though, I haven't seen many in my backyard just yet. I need to go up the mountain and watch more of the imigrants arrival. I saw lots of Northern Flickers in flight (no pix), heard many phoebes and Saw Kingfishers in flight.
Here are some Great Blue Herons and Great Egrets. I saw many cormorrants in flight but didn't get a good shot of one.
What a great start, Linth! those shots of the Eagle ready for a catch, and the ones with trying to keep his catch from the rivalry are fantastic. Thanks for the new thread.
Great thread everyone, love the shots and comments.
I had a few visitors this fall. The Waxwings were here this morning looking for fruits. They didn't stay very long, because the Robins had cleaned most of the fruits out. And yesterday I had a Red-breasted Nuthatch, at first glance, I thought I was seeing a Chickadees, and it didn't dawn on me that it was a Nuthatch. Only realized after a few time, he came around. Hopefully he'll show up again.
Here are a few of the ones I see.
Thanks, GP. I was think of what other birds I've seen in the Cape Honeysuckle and can't think of any other than the New Hollands.
Linth, I was really pleased to see the Pacific Heron. I hadn't heard of it either until about 4 months ago when I bumped into a guy at the lake who was obviously bird watching and he pointed it out to me. I hope to be able to get some closer shots of it.
Beautiful pix of my Favorite Australian bird! GP, I think that probably orioles would be interested in your honeysuckle, if they stayed around. I have a firespike in a pot for the hummingbirds, but it always blooms after they are gone. Maybe I will try to put a blanket over it next year to simulate shorter daylight hours.
Lily, cute photos of the egrets and herons. Glad you found some kingfishers-I haven't seen one here yet this year.
Burn, great bunch of birds you have there. That hanging jay was so cute and determined to get some seeds.
Margaret, beautiful photos of the white faced heron and that honeyeater with the blue eyes is just gorgeous.
Iris, glad your juncos are beginning to arrive.
Here's the white-crowned sparrow I missed last time-thanks Lily to telling me.
This bald eagle is continuing to arrive at the same tree every morning.
The ruby-crowned kinglets have finally started to arrive.
Great shots everyone! Margaret I love that White-faced Heron!
Well it turns out we have about 50 Pine Siskin here now; trying to keep feeders filled till the storm comes (glad I'm not near water; feel bad for those that are at this time).
Wonderful pictures everyone. This morning the birds had emptied the feeders and I was greeted by a beautiful male cardinal looking in my window. Just gorgeous. The feeders are now full as we await Frankenstorm. Hope it misses us.
I do hope everyone will be safe from the hurricane.
Last night I was sitting near the window when a dove flew at it full force. The bird died instantly but a Cooper's hawk grabbed it and took it off our deck. I can only assume the dove had been sitting somewhere close as they always do and was trying to get away from the hawk that's been around for several days now. It wasn't easy to watch but there was nothing I could have done to save the dove. Sometimes I dislike Mother Nature.
The hawk stayed long enough for me to run and grab the camera. I suspect it was trying to figure out how to pull the bird over the railing wire.
Lovely shots of your white- faced Heron and Honeyeater, Margaret. It always fun to see your birds.
Duc very nice shot of the White-crowned Sparrow. Sorry the hawk got your Dove.I know that's their way of survival and it doesn't upset me as much when an hawk get a bird, but when a neighbor's cat does, it's another matter. I had a neighbor's cat snatch a Pine Sisken of the platform feeder, while I was on the deck. I didn't see the cat, because I had my back to him, but my sister did, and she tried to stop it. It got away with the bird. He was here again this afternoon, and I used the water hose to shoo him and another cat..
Pelle I worry about you, hope your in a safe place, and Nanny and Mrs-Ed also. Let us know how you guys are doing, if you can.
Everyone in the Hurricane path, do stay safe.
I got a very nice surprise two days ago. I saw my first Cardinal at the feeder. It came back today.
And the Bohemian Waxwings thought the crabapples were mushy enough to eat.;) They usually eat them toward the end of winter.
I am deeply concerned over the impact that this storm will have on the Conowingo Dam and the Bald Eagles. Many eagles have just arrived from the north. On my last visit, there were close to 100. I easily counted 50 white heads (adults) sitting on the rocks,about 2700 feet across the river. The tremendous flow of water that will be going through the dam, for some time, will disrupt the Bald Eagles. They most likely will leave and search for their food elsewhere. Actually, one had started to already rebuild their nest in one of the towers.
They are closing the Tydings Memorial Bridge (I-95) that crosses the Susquehanna River, just south of the Conowingo Dam. That bridge has never been closed before today. We still have electricity but I anticipate losing it over night. The winds are really starting to pick up.
Pelle, if you read this, please take care. New Jersey will get hammered around 6 p.m. The center path is supposed to pass about 50 miles north of me but one never knows with these storms. They have a mind of their own. This storm is 800 miles wide and also dumping several feet of snow just to the west in West Virginia. Very odd ...
This is what I saw when I got up this morning, the winds last night were terrible, I hope all our friends in New York and New Jersey are ok, I also went out and put fresh water in the birdbath. We already had some visitors and I got a good pic of one especially. I don't want snow, not ready for snow, come to think of it, I am never ready for snow!!!
My cardinal pair come to the feeder for meal worms every day. The shots of the female were taken yesterday, and the one of the male was taken the day before, while the clouds from Sandy were still overhead. Hadn't seen the moon for a week so I got up early this morning to get this shot.
Guess who stopped at my suet cake this afternoon? That's right, the pileated woodpecker!!!! I was not quick enough to get a pic but by god he was there! Now all I have to do is try to get a pic, I am so excited!
Exciting about the piliated. Wish at least we would get the red bellied at our suet. Saw the cardinal this morning after the seed dumped by our tube feeder. Usually see it more often, so he must have other sources. Should tell about it to the titmice who are going to be expensive this winter as they clean up.
Finally got our electricity back yesterday afternoon ...
nice male Painted Bunting, gardenpom.
Excellent shot of the full moon, Dave. I always have a difficult time with a full moon shot especially to get any kind of clarity. I'll probably check out Conowingo this weekend. Right now it is about 6 feet below flood level. I haven't been out but some local birders have been seeing a few unusual sightings resulting from the hurricane blowing the birds inland. I'm sure there will be more ...
I'm always glad to see Margaret's birds. They're so neat. Lot of different birds that I don't ever get to see here. Of those I don't get to see are those that are from the west coast and Florida such as the Scrupt Jay from Duc. The Beautiful Bunting from GP. We don't get to see the Bohamian Waxwings, but thanks goodness we do have their cousins the Cedar Waxwings here during migratory period. Linth, love those fabulous shots of the Eagles-- they're just out of this world! Agreed with you, 2nd cousin Dave does have one excellent shot of the full moon. Whoa! I can even see the craters outlined on that pic. Hiya irisMA. Glad to know birds from your area are preparing themselves for their journey South by 'cleaning out the feeders' on a regular basic. Down here, especially while Sandy was active, I rarely saw one single bird at my backyard feeders? Or it could be Hawks were frequenting the area. I did see a few of those flying overhead while there were no song birds in the backyard. Since Sandy retrieved, my residential birds have returned, I'm so thankful of that.
In order to make up for the lack of birds at the feeders, south bound migratory birds arrived here. By the end on Oct. I saw an occasional American Coots. By the 1st of the month, I finally see 'OUR' usual flock of A. Coots which is a welcoming sight. These will be my regular visitors all through the dreary days of winter to come...
1, one of my first time I welcoming the A. Coots to our area lake
2, zommed out a little of the same group of the 'water chickens'. ^^_^^
3, & 4. Are my Eastern Blue birds; I do put out meallies for them, however, my yardbirds such as Wrens and White-breasted Nuthatches are likely to be the first to find the treats.
5, my final pic. is that of one of the Nuthatches checking out the nestbox, these guys/gals do roost within the shelter when temp. drops too low down here-- I think.
I got behind but have enjoyed catching up and seeing all these wonderful photos.
I'm afraid my one hawk has passed the word that there's lots of birds at our house-we're now seeing three hawks stick around the garden. You'd think they'd move on but no such luck.
Here's a northern flicker, a couple sharp-shinned hawks, a gathering spot below our hummer feeder (I'm feeding at least 30 right now) and a ruby-crowned kinglet.
What's a joy to be able to see those many hummingbirds all at once, Duc. Love pix of the Northern Flicker. And the R.c. kinglet is such a darling! Here I've some Great Blue Heron, a pair of Great Egrets, a flock of Double Crested cormorrants, some were just sun bathing, others are taking some serious bath. It was a beautiful blue sky day.
I have found a way to keep the squirrels away from the suet cake on the tree, I sprinkle some crushed red pepper flakes on the cake and my hubby has a hot sauce called screaming sphincter, and the squirrels don't like it one bit. They see it and go to investigate and shake their heads and twitch their tails and go the other direction! So I say it works quite well, I don't mind if they get the seeds that the birds drop on the ground, but that is all I am willing to do for them. I take a cotton ball and put some of the hot sauce on it and kind of paint the suet cake holder with the hot sauce, it does the job and the birds don't mind it one bit. The pileated came for a bite the other day, he won't come today the squirrels are around, and I don't think they get along too well together. But I will continue to put suet cakes out on the tree and in the upside down feeder and my hubby just bought a 20 pd bag of black oil sunflower seed and the birds have gone crazy over it.
[quote="MargaretK"]Any chance it could be captured and overwintered in a sanctuary?[/quote]
Highly unlikely; conservation organisations here don't tend to take an interventionist approach like this readily, unless the species is endangered (which it isn't; Bee-eaters are common in southern Europe). Even if they did, catching it wouldn't be easy.
One just has to accept that it is evolution in action: a faulty gene mutation in its migration programming being weeded out and prevented from entering the breeding population. Not impossible it might find its own way south yet, it's still there today and feeding well on late wasps.
They haven't left my place for yours yet Nanny. :) They are more numerous than all the other kind of birds, I get in the yard. Have not seen any Goldfinches for a while, and only see some Purple finches every other day.
I'm experiencing problems opening some of the thumbnails on DG. Some won't open and some open partially, while sometimes some will open. I tried many time to open Duc's pic of the Flicker and hummingbird, but it won't come up.
I'm now seeing more Pine Grosbeaks, they were a welcome sight.
The Cardinal was back this morning, this picture is from the first time I saw it.
The Bohemian Waxwing show up for the crabapples too.
Picture not of today, but the Evening Grosbeaks were around in great number, this morning as well.
No Redpolls so far, expecting them around the end of December.
Julie, love your siskins! Wish some would return to my feeders.
Emptyeyes, now that is close!
Burn, I don't know what's wrong, but I can open my photos just fine. Love your birds, they're each such a pretty bird. I'm so anxious to find a waxwing at our berries-should be any time now. Beautiful pictures.
I found a great egret, a horned grebe, a couple of the bonaparte's gulls and a mallard on the lake.
Thanks for the correction Resin, I do appreciate your help.
GP, glad your robins have shown up. So far I've just found one and my berries are all ready for them.
Nanny, glad you got a pine siskin-at least you got more photos of yours than I did.
Here's the first pine siskin I've seen in two years and it just stayed for three pictures today.
The northern flickers are sure enjoying the persimmons in our neighbors trees.
Here's another northern flicker enjoying the berries on the Virginia creeper.
I know they're common, but I rarely see pigeons or rock doves as they're called.
The American white pelicans are arriving on our lake by the hundreds.
Terrific pics. of the Waxwings Resin, Duc, Love all those to include the Pine Siskin, No. Flickers, Rock Dove and especially the Pellicans. Nice series of Pine Siskins Nan. Burn, loves those Grosbeaks and the Waxwing, I was busy working on the garden and didn't have many photos to share, but this Phoebe came by my window first thing this morning.
Oh Duc, the beautiful photo of the Flicker on the color fall foliages. Is that a Persimon tree?
I don't have any pictures to show but enjoy looking at all of you guys pics.
My hummers are gone until spring. I did see some of the winter birds for the first time the other day. A Robin, a Junco and a couple of Goldfinches. It always makes me happy to see them return.
Love all the photos of your beautiful waxwings Resin! You had great lighting for your photo ops, well done.
Lily, yes, that is my neighbor's persimmon tree. They have two and they're turning such beautiful colors right now. Glad the phoebe came to see you.
Pestee42, nice to hear you're seeing some winter birds.
IrisMA, I hope your juncos will stay for a while longer.
Here's a new one for me, an immature ring-billed gull, a red-tailed hawk that kept going straight up into the sky and then diving straight down-don't know what that was all about but it did that several times, here's an anna's hummingbird with that persimmon tree coloring the background and the last another anna's hummer that's sitting in a lemon tree where he guards his feeder above him.
Agreed, such outstanding shot of the hummer. But by far my fav. must have been the Northern Flicker with the tiny jewel! It's rare that I get to see these colorful Woodpecker in the garden. I'm delighted to watch them going after dogwood berries this time of year.
Duc, I must have scanned through and missed that you've written on the post about the Persimons from the neighbor. Please pardon. Resin, how can we tell the different between the Bohemian Waxwings and the Cedar please?
[quote="Lily_love"]Agreed, such outstanding shot of the hummer. But by far my fav. must have been the Northern Flicker with the tiny jewel! It's rare that I get to see these colorful Woodpecker in the garden. I'm delighted to watch them going after dogwood berries this time of year. [/quote]
That's a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker you have there, probably an immature (little red on its head).
[quote="Lily_love"]Resin, how can we tell the different between the Bohemian Waxwings and the Cedar please?[/quote]
Easiest are that Bohemian has white / yellow stripes on the wing (see my pics above), whereas Cedar's wing is plain grey-brown; also Bohemian has red-brown undertail, while Cedar is whitish there.