Monday, May 04, 2015

The Early Birder

Dawn's Early Light at Long Run Park
Lots of people are reluctant to become birders on the assumption that all birders get up and out before the crack of dawn, and normally I would agree with them. I get up when I'm ready and go out to see what I can find, when I'm not with a group. My friend, Jim Johnson, from Western Kentucky, is on site at dawn, every day, without fail unless he is sick or traveling. Oh my. But he's one of the best bird photographers I know, so when he emailed that he's visiting his daughter in the Louisville area, and let's go birding, what could I say, but OK, when?  Believe it or not, Dick and I left the house at 6:15 this morning to meet Jim at his favorite birding spot - Long Run Park. I must admit, his experience pays off. We saw the sun rising. And moved around so the sun was shining on the birds and not behind them.
Baltimore Oriole
Baltimore Oriole - female
The Orioles were having a fine time, singing and looking in all the tree blossoms for bugs. In fact, it was hard to find them sometimes, since the oak tree catkins way above our heads were almost the same color. One yellow bird turned out to be a female Oriole rather than a warbler as we first guessed.
Gray Catbird
The Gray Catbird sang and meowed as he looked over the branch for his breakfast...
Eastern Kingbird
...while the Eastern Kingbirds chased away anything they thought was too close.
Eastern Meadowlark
In the meadows we heard a Bob White (yeah!) and the beautiful Meadowlarks singing.
Purple Martin
We took Jim to Beckley Creek Park, not too far down Shelbyville Road from our first location, to show him the wide variety of habitats. We hoped to find the Sora someone saw last week, but no luck.
The puddles with shorebirds from last week were all dried up too. In this business, he who hesitates loses the bird. (or something like that). I didn't realize Killdeer had this orangey eye ring. Did you know that "orange" has no rhyme? Neither does purple or silver.
Red-winged Blackbird
Jim takes terrific photos of birds in flight, in focus, and does it on purpose. I'm lucky to catch one flying accidentally.  I want to see his post for today, and see if I can tell we were together and seeing the same birds!  And I posted TWO lists to eBird. It's getting easier to find my locations now that I noticed the NEXT button on the map page!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

some of my favorite birds; love the kingbird