Saturday, May 14, 2011

Great Swamp Day! Part 2

The second place was more active, sadly this was not limited to birds.  There were little..... inchworms, I guess...... dropping from the sky on little silky threads.  Constantly.  We were all running into them, it was..... unsavory.  There were also plenty of mosquitoes.  I mean, many.  Several.  Lots.  I was covered in bug spray, but they were unimpressed.  Note to self: This is what Paul means by "possibly a little buggy."  :-)  Luckily the place is absolutely beautiful, and the sightings made the inchworms and bugs worth putting up with!

Starting off we saw this kingbird posing with two orchard orioles, helpfully gathered together on the same branch.  Thanks guys!

Then this barn swallow posed for a close-up.  You can see that this one is much paler than the earlier barn swallow, this one looks like a juvenile.

We worked hard to get a nice view of this blue-winged warbler.  Gorgeous!

I know I must be getting much more used to birding because it now sort of makes sense why it's called "blue-winged warbler" when it's mostly yellow and the wings are not really blue.  I mean, not to a non-birder.  I'm starting to be able to see it.

This yellow warbler found us early and stayed with us almost the whole time we were out.  I mean, I guess it's possible there were several, but I like to think of this guy following us around.  It was hilarious, it seemed like every time we looked for something small and interesting a yellow warbler showed up.  :-)

This crested flycatcher was much prettier in person - the belly looked quite yellow.

A turkey vulture circled in fairly low, letting us get a good look at the difference between black vultures and turkey vultures.

This common yellow-throat teased me without mercy.  This was sadly the best picture I got.

It turns out that eastern bluebirds are gorgeous!  Two of them were flying around, and I might have a new favorite.  Now this bird definitely has blue, even a child would agree!  :-)

A few red-headed woodpeckers came through and I saw them several times, but they were too fast for the camera.

Another orchard oriole came by to say hello.

Another snake!  I think they said it was a garter snake.

Again, the place was beautiful, the path was pretty easy, although it wasn't just a loop, it was more of a network of paths/trails and it was possible to get lost.  Which we took full advantage of, resulting in......

This gorgeous pileated woodpecker!  Yes, that's what it is.  Trust me.  I'll say it again - Damn You Autofocus!  This was to me the find of the day.  Many thanks to the person who spotted it!  :-)

Someone saw a warbler briefly, and as I looked for it, I noticed this rosy-breasted grosbeak overseeing the entire operation.  My best look at this guy ever!  Of course, we never did find that warbler.  It was probably the yellow.  :-)

As we were leaving, walking quickly to catch up to the group that did not take an extra detour, we saw a purple martin overhead.  It did not look like an oversized swallow to me from that angle, the wings had a different shape.  It was really cool to see.

Another fun and tiring day with AMNH - yay!

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