Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Persistance and Luck

I'll try to be short on words right now.  It has been a long day and I have a lot of good photo results to edit.  Yesterday, I got a little smarter on the habits of the Eastern Bluebirds around the nest boxes.

Eastern Bluebird, male

So, this male has some favorite perches to watch the grass areas for insects. It just takes hours to learn which branches are the chosen ones.  I expect even better results soon.

 Began today at the Mundy Wildflower Garden on the Cornell campus.  I was thinking birds  until two very prime wildflowers caught my interest. To my delight, I met a new photographer friend, David, and we explored the area together.

Marsh Marigolds are actually in the buttercup family, but obviously someone thought they reminded them of marigolds.  Well, they got the marsh part pretty much right. They love the wet, squishy places.

I guess the Virginia Bluebells fare a little better in the name department.  They are blue, and they are found in Virginia.  Sounds better than New York Bluebells, eh?

This crazy spring weather  has been rough on some blooming plants, but it has been good to the Bluebells.  Can't recall them lasting so long or being so lush. On the negative side, I found the buds on some plants frozen into a mush.  No May Apple blooms in many cases.

Now, back to the birds.  After some unfavorable weather, a shift in the patterns has open the door for many small birds to come north, and on top of that, I just got lucky today. To be honest, we roamed the wildflower garden for at least two hours with no bird photos to show for it.  Heard them, saw them, but never got close. As we returned to the horticulture building with zero birds, we spotted activity in a flowering  apple tree. Then, I heard the piping calls of the Baltimore Orioles.  Not sure if they are eating the flowers or bugs on the flowers, but it was some sort of feast. This male put on a concert of his songs. Nice.

That pretty much made the efforts of the morning justified.  But, there was more, as a beautiful Northern Cardinal took a perch nearby.

The male Cardinal also showed interest in the flowering apple.

I would be fully satisfied with these results, but the apple tree also attracted a very small warbler that stayed high in the tree, nearly always hidden by branches.

I could not match the little bird's white eye ring with any warbler that I knew, and when I got home to study my bird guide, I discovered it is a Nashville Warbler, and a first for me.  (Birders get excited for firsts.) There are just so many warblers and sometimes the smallest detail is needed to separate the choices.  What a nice end to the outing.  The birding weatherman has predicted another big wave of warblers for tonight, and I am debating whether I have the energy to get up very early again.  Don't know right now.

Hope you enjoy my story and that it moves you to look outside your windows just a little tomorrow. Never know what will entertain you with a song or some bright color.


Note: I have loaded a wider set of high resolution photos for the Baltimore Oriole and Northern Cardinal on my SmugMug web galleries at:!i=1826082241&k=SZn9n7w

1 comment:

  1. All wonderful Paul, and congrats on Nashville Warbler!