Monday, January 31, 2011

Bulletin #130 – local birds

David McDonald Photography
Friendswood Texas
January 31, 2011

Bulletin #130 – local birds

In the 2010 year summary last bulletin, I omitted another guide who I had used last year. My apologies to him.

Darrell Vollert led a trip to east Texas for the elusive Bachman's Sparrow.

There have been a number of interesting birds in the local area recently.

The best one is a male Prairie Warbler (Dendroica discolor) at Corps Woods in Galveston. This species remains in breeding plumage all year, so this male shows all his stripes and color. This was only the 3rd of this species I have ever seen and the second in Texas. Here are 2 photos of this beautiful little bird.

This has been a great winter for Golden-crowned Kinglets (Regulus satrapa). They seem to be everywhere. I have seen about a dozen this year so far, when in most winters I may see 2-3 in total.

This bird was at Brazos Bend State Park. He is IDed by the white eye stripe and the gold median crown stripe.

Also at Brazos Bend SP was this cooperative American Pipit (Anthus rubescens) who perched on the end of a stump.  

An unusual bird for December was this Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica) still hanging around. It was a cold morning and he repeatedly rested on the dike at Brazos Bend SP. Notice that he also is leucistic, which means he has several white feathers.

Perhaps the best photo I have ever obtained of a flying Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus) was this female at Anahuac NWR. One can see the white eye line as well as the diagnostic white rump.  

The most unusual bird in a long time in my bird bath was a female Pileated Woodpecker (Drycopus pileatus). I was watching out the kitchen window when a huge bird flew in and landed on an oak tree beside the bird bath. I watched as she looked down at the water. Sure enough, she flew down and landed on the bird bath and drank some water. Fortunately my camera was close by and I got a few photos, through the window, before she flew off. 

Happy birding and photography,

David McDonald


photos copyright 2010 David McDonald

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