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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bad Photos of Good Bird: Snail Kite

OK, so my digiscoping was pretty lousy on this one, but I got over 50 shots of a Snail Kite hunting and eating snails at the end of Joe Overstreet Rd on Lake Kissimmee. Seeing some really cool birds, just need a better scope setup...

Loggerhead Shrike

Digiscoped through my old Bausch & Lomb Discoverer scope on a window mount on my recent Florida trip. You gotta love butcher birds!

Dead Hog

There were at least a dozen Black Vultures on this roadside feast when I first pulled up, but they scattered. Note also the dead 'dillo (click for closer view, if you dare!).

Florida Scrub-Jays

Had a chance to digibin and digiscope some Florida Scrub-Jays on Sunday. The following shots were taken with a hand held Canon PowerShot SD750 through Zeiss 7x42 BTs.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Squirrel Boobs

Not for the faint-hearted, today at work I got an eye full of this gal hanging on my bird feeder showing off all her glory!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Birdchaser on Martha Stewart Radio

Tomorrow morning at 8:30EDT I will be on Morning Living, a Martha Stewart Living Sirius Satellite Radio show talking about what is going on with birds in people’s yards this time of year—early migration, nesting, etc. If you have satellite radio, tune in for a few moments of fun bird news! Or you can get a FREE online trial subscription here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

I and the Bird #96


Inspired by Black Oystercatchers I watched earlier this week in California, here is the latest I and the Bird (#96). Just like an oystercatcher, you're gonna have to hunt for the juicy bird blog posts. Click on an oyster or starfish image to see what you can find. There's plenty of great meat to be had, and even some pearls. But you're gonna have to work for them! Have fun!

KyronLarryLauraLaurentL&DMikeNancyPatrickRickRobRogerSharonoysters4SusanSusannahTaiThe RidgerVickieYC

The next I and the Bird will be hosted by Great Auk-or Greatest Auk? Submit your posts there by April 2.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Big Sur Condor

After my talk this afternoon I slipped out of the Audubon California Assembly to drive down Highway 1 for a couple hours. Great vistas!

Highlight was a lone young California Condor (Condor #44) perched on a rock above the surf at Big Sur. Unfortunately, all I could get were these poor digiscoped shots through a handheld spotting scope.

It’s been over 20 years since I’ve seen a free-flying condor, so it was great to spend a few moments with this young bird.

Birding Asilomar

This morning before the Audubon California Assembly, a bunch of us went for a bird walk down to the beach. Great to see Black Oystercatcher, Black Turnstone, Whimbrel, and Surfbirds. Star of the show was a Rhinoceros Auklet floating in the surf just offshore. Wonderful!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Sea Otters at Moss Landing

Driving down to Asilomar from San Jose, I stopped by Moss Landing and was delighted to find maybe 30 or more sea otters floating in the inlet. Growing up in Oregon in the ‘80s I could only dream of seeing these wonderful beasts. Here I had them floating on their back within a stones throw. Isn’t life great!?!

Friday, March 13, 2009

My Yard eBird

Want to keep track of the birds in your yard? The new My Yard eBird makes it easier than ever. Just sign in, mark your yard on a map, and start entering your bird sightings. My Yard eBird keeps your yard list, keeps track of how the bird numbers change over time, and provides graphs and charts to help you better understand the movements and fluctuations of bird numbers in your yard.

My Yard eBird has all the features of regular eBird, but we've made it a little easier for backyard birdwatchers. You don't have to be a rocket scientist, computer geek, or bird nerd to now use the most powerful tool available to help you keep track of the birds in your yard.

All you need is this link and the birds in your yard to get started!

Signs of Spring

Sure as shooting it's Spring in Pennsylvania. Early Spring, but Spring nonetheless!

Yesterday I had a pair of Hairy Woodpeckers courtship displaying outside my window at work, and a Fox Sparrow under the feeders, and a Chipping Sparrow showed up. Flocks of Common Grackles are on the move, and all the cavity nesting birds are singing away. Fish Crows are moving back into the neighborhood. We may yet get a late snowstorm, but we've turned the corner. Spring is in the air!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

MEGA: Black-headed Siskin in Texas

Today a Black-headed Siskin, a Mesoamerican bird, was found for the first time north of Mexico on South Padre Island in Texas. More info here and photos here. Wish you were in Texas?
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