Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wisconsin Bound

I'm on the way to Egg Harbor in Wisconsin with my wife and family for Memorial Day weekend. We are staying in Kenosha tonight and will be in Egg Harbor by tomorrow afternoon. I hope to take some great pics of birds and landscapes, but until then, some shots of the ride there.

We drove past these huge windmills that are right along I-65 in northern Indiana. This was the first time I've ever seen a windmill farm and it was pretty exciting. I felt like I was in some sci-fi futuristic film or something.

Our route also took us straight through Chicago which also was a first with me. Passing through makes me excited for my trip I am taking there in August to Wrigley Field. The next pictures should include some great shots of beautiful Door County in Wisconsin. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Grassland Birds cont.

More good grasslands birds to report. I was treated to two pairs of Bobolinks today, a life bird for me. I had been hoping to see these guys show up one day and was thrilled to see these beautiful birds for the first time. Adding to the exciting day was two Cliff Swallows coursing low over the ground.

Eastern Meadowlark



Friday, May 14, 2010

Grassland Birds

Grasshopper Sparrow


Savannah Sparrow

You Talkin' to Me?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Mourning Doves


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Laughing Gull makes 150!

The landfill list hit 150 today with the addition of a Laughing Gull. You usually see these guys along the beach on the Gulf and Atlantic seaboard but they are seen inland as well. It wasn't around long and of course I didn't have my camera on me today. :( Here is a map from ebird showing where these guys have been sighted in the last five years. Very cool to see and a first for me in KY. Overall a very good bird to make the list 150 birds strong!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Bird-a-thon Results

Despite seriously windy weather, I was able to find 55 species of birds at the landfill yesterday for the 2010 Beckham Bird Club Bird-a-thon. We raised $82.50 that will go to bird conservation and education. All donations came from donors whom have never pledged before and will go a long way to help Kentucky birds. Thank you to all who donated.

With the windy weather it was difficult to even see birds let alone photograph them, but I was able to get a few shots of those that cooperated. Barn Swallows were quite numerous yesterday and found a spot where they were coursing for insects and collecting mud to construct or repair their nests. Several were perching on a piece of rebar jutting out from the garbage. It made a rather nice place to rest from the busy work of catching insects buzzing over the trash.

A rather common bird but nonetheless beautiful is the American Robin. This guy was standing on a concrete post next to a gas well head yesterday.

Several Baltimore Orioles were seen and heard singing from the treetops. These birds construct nests that look like baskets hanging from the branch. The female builds the nest by weaving dead plant material together with her beak like a seamstress uses a needle. If you wish to attract orioles to your yard you can slice an orange in half and impale it on a stick. This will entice the birds into your yard as they enjoy the juicy treat.

The only sparrow I was able to photograph was this Savannah Sparrow. These birds usually winter in KY but a small part of the population stays in Kentucky around Lexington year round and actually breed in the state.

The following is a full list of the species seen on the Bird-a-thon at the landfill. Thanks again to those that participated.

Number of species: 55

Canada Goose 1
Mallard 3
Blue-winged Teal 2
Great Blue Heron 2
Great Egret 1
Black-crowned Night-Heron 1
Turkey Vulture 2
Red-tailed Hawk 3
American Kestrel 1
Killdeer 8
Spotted Sandpiper 1
Ring-billed Gull 1
Rock Pigeon 1
Mourning Dove 20
Chimney Swift 6
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker 2
Willow Flycatcher 1
Eastern Kingbird 3
White-eyed Vireo 1
Blue Jay 1
American Crow 2
Horned Lark 1
Northern Rough-winged Swallow 2
Barn Swallow 40
Carolina Chickadee 2
Tufted Titmouse 2
Carolina Wren 3
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 2
American Robin 30
Gray Catbird 3
Northern Mockingbird 3
Brown Thrasher 1
European Starling 125
Yellow Warbler 5
Bay-breasted Warbler 1
Common Yellowthroat 6
Vesper Sparrow 1
Savannah Sparrow 1
Grasshopper Sparrow 1
Song Sparrow 12
White-throated Sparrow 1
Northern Cardinal 4
Blue Grosbeak 3
Indigo Bunting 15
Dickcissel 5
Red-winged Blackbird 100
Eastern Meadowlark 12
Common Grackle 40
Brown-headed Cowbird 25
Orchard Oriole 1
Baltimore Oriole 3
House Finch 2
American Goldfinch 20
House Sparrow 1

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Migration Update

Spring migration has been slow for almost everyone so far this spring, but the past couple of days have brought some decent birds to the landfill. Yesterday I heard and saw a Warbling Vireo (a lifer for me), at least 5 Yellow Warblers and several Prothonotary Warblers and many Willow Flycatchers. Getting decent pictures is proving difficult either because the light is too low in the morning or washes the birds out when it is shining. Anyway, here are a few of the best pics I've taken so far.

Prothonotary Warbler

Indigo Bunting

Yellow Warbler

Orchard Oriole

Blue Grosbeak pair

On another note, I only managed 48 species at the landfill yesterday. I'm shooting for at least 60 on Saturday during the Birdathon. We will see if I can make it.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Beckham Bird Club Birdathon

This year I will be participating in the Beckham Bird Club Birdathon, an event that raises money for local organizations involved in bird research, rehabilitation, education, as well as for purchasing prime bird habitat in Kentucky. Below is a list of organiztions that will be benefiting from this year's Birdathon:

· Operation Migration

· Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission

· Kentucky Natural Lands Trust

· Kentucky Resources Council (KRC)

· Raptor Rehabilitation

· The Louisville Nature Center

· Kentucky Conservation Committee (KCC)

· Bob & Judy Peak (Bluebirds)

· Woods & Waters Land Trust

· The Museum of the American Printing House for the Blind

· Wingspan of Kentucky

I will be counting birds at the landfill on Saturday May 8th for the Birdathon. Donations are usually made by pledging a certain amount of money for each species of bird observed. Hopefully I will find roughly 60-70 birds, but possibly more if I am lucky. If you are interested in donating, please email me at I thank you, Beckham Bird Club thanks you, and most importantly, Kentucky's birds thank you.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More