Perhaps it’s not the correct political climate to be trying to figure out who the mated pairs of our backyard birds may be. We have our funny immature somebody in the feature photo. But what got me thinking about this again was the appearance of the female red-winged blackbird yesterday.
The tufted titmouse has been too fast for me to get pictures lately. But I looked up the male/female identification issue and they are identical. You have to watch their behavior as the males are more territorial than the females. I will keep an eye out when they visit next time. As you have seen it’s been a lot of fun watching the goings on at the feeders. And such nice timing since the action is best at ‘happy hour.’
The feature photo is something I saw while waiting for a traffic light the other day. It caught my eye because the day before I had dithered over buying this;
In this particular case it’s technology that’s driven me to drink. I discovered that my camera will let you take a ‘precapture’. So you focus on a bird and when the action happens you take the shot and half the time you get this;
If you use this new feature you half-press the shutter button while you find your shot, then when to do push the shutter button all the way it takes the photos from a half second before you pressed the shutter. Great, right? So I took a ton of pictures that way the other day. but my software doesn’t want to open them. So this morning I upgraded the software, upgraded the camera firmware, and added a new editing program. And everything fought me as I worked on it. It’s been a long morning and I still haven’t successfully created even one picture. I have wasted half the day, but certainly it must be close to 5 o’clock somewhere…
Just been sitting on the lanai for the last day or so, trying, but not always succeeding, in taking shots of the visiting birds. And other wildlife. Today I told Bernie that our scene out there is too cluttered. We need another post, and more feeders for the woodpeckers. And plants to bring in the butterflies and pollinators. And more stuff that I’ll think of in a minute…
I had complained that the butterflies that flit through the yard never land anywhere, but as you see in the feature photo one did land in the bougainvillea. So I zoomed and took some shots, and then cropped them like crazy, but I got him. The birds are busy late in the afternoon when the light is better. It makes for a fun way to spend a little time.
There are osprey nests on posts along many of the roads we drive on our usual travels. But we had never seen this nest before because we hadn’t been to Fort DeSoto Park before, at least not together. We had minimum information on where exactly to see the many, many migrating birds that we have seen pictures of lately, but we were optimistic. My favorite pictures wound up being this osprey sequence, even if I may have missed the boat on it entirely. What I saw in the distance, and you see in the feature photo, was a nest being guarded by Dad on the nearby branch, and Mom standing in the nest. Dad, if that is in fact Dad, never moved from that position. And for that matter neither did ‘Mom.’
So I showed my pictures to Bernie and told him why I thought the whole thing was so funny, and he pointed out that the two birds on the nest are the same size, so perhaps they are both babies. Siblings. And Mom may be the one of the branch keeping watch over the shenanigans. And, darn it all, he has a point. I guess the joke was on me. But it was fun to see them anyhow.
My trips to the rookery have been disappointing for a while now. Nests that I knew were there were tucked into the foliage, making them impossible to see. But I have now discovered the secret to seeing the chicks that were growing up in those nests. Just wait for them to grow up and leave home. Maybe they are teenager-equivalent now, and mom and dad are having trouble keeping them at home. So it was a couple of days ago that I ‘found’ them, sort of. We were there earlier in the day than we usually are, so maybe that’s another secret I figured out. It was a fun day at the rookery. That’s the snowy egret chicks in the feature photo, not hiding anymore.
The other new thing I noticed that day was the aroma. Not the most pleasant part of the day.
Going to the zoo will work out best when you plan ahead. Getting there when the zoo opens at 9:30 you can expect the animals to be active. The orangutans emerge from their dens to find that the keepers have scattered greens around the enclosure for them to eat. Sometimes they put out various pieces of clothing or towels that the orangutans enjoy draping over themselves. There is a good bit of shade at the zoo all day, but it will get pretty hot later. Of course there is a splash pad for the kids to enjoy, and I suppose a parent or grandparent might enjoy it also. A one day pass can seem expensive, until you realize that you can buy a pass that will get you admission for a year for the same price.