July 16, 2010

Summer Sightings

My First Bath

There have been numerous fledglings in the backyard this Summer. We have been getting several House Sparrow and House Finch fledglings. This is a female H. Finch bathing in the sun :-)

This fledgling Sparrow is still trying to figure things out.

I believe the Orioles have left the backyard :-( I was hoping to see some fledglings at the Oriole feeder. They probably found someone's backyard that is serving Grape Jelly.

The House Finches have finished nesting and fledging, but, we still continue to get the occasional Male House Finch at the feeder.

We had a pair of Brown Thrashers from early Spring through the end of June. The white stuff you see in the photo is not snow or hail, it is cotton from the mature Cottonwood Trees.

This is a fledgling female Cardinal. I have a story to tell you about this photo opp. She is on the back deck and I am shooting from inside the house. My camera has a red flashing dot while focusing...the Cardinal froze in this position, as if shot by a stun gun or something! Needless to say, I took several shots of this pose...LOL!! I was getting worried about her...she finally "unfroze" and went on with life. Remember the game Freeze Tag :-))

I really don't have the camera for these little guys, but, I couldn't resist. To ID the above butterfly, I studied the Butterfly & Moth website and decided to go with Gorgone Checkerspot. Let me know what you think?

My grand-daughter helped me spot these Dragonflies. She has really good eyes. I know zero about ID-ing dragonflies, but they sure are pretty.

I traveled up to South Dakota to visit my Dad (the place where I grew up). The Killdeers like to nest there.

This is an Upland Sandpiper in South Dakota. All the years growing up there and I'd never noticed it before. They like nesting in this part of the world near Alfalfa fields. And that's just where I saw them all. I was thinking, "Is that a Road Runner, or what?!"

Another view of the Upland Sandpiper standing on cut Alfalfa. The field guide says they are rarely seen near water. They like native prairies and hay fields.

This is an Upland Sandpiper perched on the utility wires. They are fond of perching on posts and utility wires.

Killdeer nest in South Dakota.
I was so thrilled when my brother showed me this Killdeer nest right inside the feedlot. He is interested in wildlife, too, so tries to avoid running over these nests with the tractor while feeding the cows. He was expecting the eggs to hatch soon. I would have loved getting some photos of Killdeer chicks :-)