Friday, June 18

Sparrows, Spotteds, Skimmers, Skippers

First off, thank you so much to those who ID'd the bird of prey in my previous post as an osprey! I really need to get a better field guide, esp. when it comes to birds with different color phases, geesh!

So, continuing on from my previous post and the drive I took along Spring Creek...I always stop at the picnic area...last time I was there I saw a male Western tanager...I saw one again, possibly the same fellow...did I mention that some of the birds seemed to be following me? Again, we were all really happy to have sunshine and warmth return after days of blah weather...  

The tanager landed in the tree that I was under, which was a shock after the snub I received the previous visit...he proceeded to go thru a series of entertaining antics as I snapped away...if you look closely you can see that his head feathers look wet...I'm guessing he'd taken a dip in the creek and was cleaning himself...

Realizing that the birds were about in full force that day, I headed back to I-90 and PV Rd., to the recently discovered hot spot between two farm houses...

A spotted towhee gave me the classic butt-snub...

A black-headed grosbeak wasn't any easier to snap...

Hairy woodpeckers are more accomodating but don't stay still...

The Northern Bullock's oriole was spotted again...I think I saw two actually...this one flew over closer to me as if he was getting a better look at the strange creature below...

Next, I drove the gravel road thru the Ft. Meade rec area, stopped by a trailhead and walked a short way down to look around...the path was swarming with butter and dragonflies, bees...the silver-spotted skipper is easy to ID, this one on white clover...

A grass skipper (tawny-edged?) also liked the clover...

And so did the crescent butterflies...

Finally, a dragonfly photo...a skimmer...

Heading back up the trail, a lark sparrow was hopping along eating insects...

And up in the trees by the road, a spotted towhee was singing, then trying to hide from me.

All in all, a good outing...I hope to get out again this weekend, probably Sunday, weather-permitting.

PS: I apologize for the constant changing of my blog's background; I'm just picky I guess, trying to find one that I'm happy with. Please bear with me!


  1. David Allen Sibley's field guides have the best color phase/juvenile plumages illustrations that I know of. I bought one after it was recommended by naturalist at Ding Darling NWR in Florida. He said it was the best for Bald Eagle reference with immature birds, and others in seasonal plumage I think he is right.
    Love the tanager doing his post-bath routine.

  2. Great photos of the little tanager grooming his feathers. You got a wonderful birding area there. Many western and mountain species I haven't seen.

    Haven't seen a single oriole in my area this year. Disappointing. We had lots of butterflies until the monsoons hit.

  3. Like the Photo's today jann. A riot of colour! Well done with the Dragon :-)

  4. Your tanager photos are so special, Jann, they put a smile on my face! I love hearing the Towhee's...Drink your teeeeea!!!

    I took photos of a dragonfly myself, today!


  5. Hi Jann

    You can see and photograph such wonderful creatures ...the tanager is so bright with a personality to match...I had not heard of him.

    Happy days

  6. There's always something so calming about your blog that I am drawn to it for relaxation purposes!
    One day when we begin our cross country adventures, SD will be on our list.

  7. Hi Jann.
    Love the photo's, very colourful birds, they would brighten the dullest day.
    As for changing you Blog background, well it is not the background your fellow bloggers are really interested in, it is the post you produce.