Saturday, June 30, 2012

Oatka Creek Park • June 17


Chipping Sparrow

Chipping Sparrow

Gray Catbird

Yellow Warbler

Mallard. This looks like an immature duck molting into its first set of adult feathers. The wings come first, and the ones on this bird look shiny and new. After the primary flight feathers, the other feathers in a mallard molt according to Cornell's Birds of North America.

Song Sparrow


Hairy Woodpecker. This looks like a fledgling! Note the lack of the characteristically long woodpecker tail -- it hasn't grown one yet. There are also patches of buff mixed in with the white on the head. Finally, the red on the back of the head (this is a male) is just two small patches. The red would be more pronounced in an adult.


Red Admiral. The caterpillar of the Red Admiral is variable in color. The later caterpillars seem lighter and redder in color than the earlier jet black caterpillars.


Red Admiral. This caterpillar looks darker, though the feet are red.


Red Squirrel. I am still surprised to find Red Squirrels still eating last year's black walnuts in late June. Either the supply normally lasts a full calendar year or last year was a bumper crop (which I think it was.)


Baltimore Oriole

Wild Mint

Blue-winged Warbler. This was an interesting episode. These are normally well hidden birds that are easy to hear but very hard to see. Not this one! It stayed out in the open, carrying food, and screaming at me! I finally realized the source of the commotion when a fledgling Blue-winged Warbler popped up next to me and gave me a good long inspection, i.e., I was the first human it had ever had a chance to examine. The adult, of course, was going bonkers with the perceived threat to its offspring.


Blue-winged Warbler. The fledgling left before I could get its picture, but I took a couple of the adult as a consolation prize and moved on.


Common Milkweed. This species is starting to fade, though slowly. Replacing it are Butterfly Weed (which is a member of the milkweed family) and Swamp Milkweed. I will have pictures of both in a future report.


Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Oatka Creek Park • June 16


Eastern Phoebe

Eastern Cottontail

Yellow Warbler

Wood Thrush. These birds are very cautious, so when you get a photo-op, you make the most of it!

Wood Thrush

Wood Thrush

Wood Thrush

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Rose-breasted Grosbeak. This female has a Red Admiral caterpillar in her bill.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Baltimore Oriole. This male has food, probably for nearby nestlings.

Baltimore Oriole

Baltimore Oriole

Eastern Bluebird

Common Milkweed. The scent from these flowers is now very strong and sweet, almost like candy.

American Crows. The bird on the left is a juvenile with blue-gray eyes and the inside of its bill pinkish-red. 

American Crows. It takes a year or more before the inside of the bill will become the black of an adult.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Oatka Creek Park • June 15


Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Cedar Waxwing

Baltimore Oriole

Baltimore Oriole

Great Crested Flycatcher

Yellow-billed Cuckoo. Another sighting and another game of hide-and-seek! My problem today was that the sun was going in and out of clouds and where the cuckoo chose to briefly perch was in harsh lighting. As a result, the camera's automatic exposure algorithm was completely fooled.


Yellow-billed Cuckoo. If only I had had the time to correct the exposure!

Song Sparrow

Red Admiral caterpillar

Common Milkweed

Common Milkweed

Barn Swallows. These are juveniles, waiting for their parent to return and feed them.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Oatka Creek Park • June 14


Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Eastern Bluebird

Deptford Pink

Gray Catbird

Common Yellowthroat

Eastern Phoebe

Yellow-billed Cuckoo. This has been the "it" bird of late in the park. This bird seems to be a summer resident along the creek, perhaps nesting there.


Yellow-billed Cuckoo. This bird is a shade larger than a Blue Jay. Key features are the larger white spots underneath its tail and the sunny yellow lower bill.


Yellow-billed Cuckoo. This is a very secretive bird, so this photo-op was rather remarkable for me.


Yellow-billed Cuckoo

Yellow-billed Cuckoo

Question Mark

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Monarch. The colors and conditions of the wings look fresh. This may be a brand new butterfly.


Monarch. Not only is the adult (butterfly) form here, but in the upper right is a Monarch caterpillar!


Monarch

Common Milkweed

Common Milkweed

Barn Swallows. These are fledglings waiting patiently for the adult out hunting in the field to return and feed them.


Barn Swallow. These fledglings were not about to move. They were staying put, waiting for their food!


Barn Swallow Fledgling

Barn Swallow Fledgling

Cedar Waxwing