Raindrops on roses and… Wait. That's some 1960's movie. But Biggest Week in American Birding is almost here. And really these little gems called warblers decorate the trees and fill the air with song. In short, they make me happy. Here are a few birds I got photos of in 2013. Enjoy! Continue reading
Throngs of birders came to Northwest Ohio to catch a glimpse of the magical spectacle of birds on their epic journey from as far away as South America on their way to their breeding grounds in Canada. Birders here are on the famed boardwalk at Magee Marsh near Oak Harbor, Ohio.
The last day of Biggest Week was chilly with winds out if the North–not prime migration conditions. But, the cold wind kept the insect-eating warblers low and conditions for photography were excellent. This Cape May Warbler looks like it could have used an extra layer of clothing. Continue reading
There are several openings still available with Florida Nature Tours (http://www.floridanaturetours.net) with Wes Biggs and other fine leaders this month (April 2013). I went to the Dry Tortugas April 24-27, 2012 with Wes and company and had a blast. The birds were in good supply, the weather was phenomenal, and the exotic blue waters were as magical as ever.
The brunt of the available spaces occur on the last trip in April 26-29, 2013. Is this a good time to go? If you check on eBird, you will find that almost 300 species of birds have been recorded in just the Dry Tortugas and Key West in Florida. Of those 300 species, 221 have been recorded during the last week in April (the best week of the year in this area). A whopping 39 species of warblers have been recorded in eBird for this area and 34 species during the last week of April.
I really love the mild weather and beautiful blue waters. And the birds are fabulous. You can walk around the Fort or you can sit on a bench and watch the show. The show, you say? Yes. The Fountain. A fresh water fountain is in the middle of the Fort. Most all of the species of birds there will eventually show up at The Fountain for a drink. It’s also a fun place to set up for photography (if that is your inclination).
The Dry Tortugas are a must-see spot for any birder. A few specialty birds occur in the Keys and the Dry Tortugas including Mangrove Cuckoo, Antillean Nighthawk, White-crowned Pigeon, Black-whiskered Vireo, Gray Kingbird, Brown Noddy, Sooty Tern, Brown & Masked Boobies, and Magnificent Frigatebird. Excited yet? You should be. It’s a great place to go birding.
Here is info from Florida Nature Tours:
And here are some photos from my trip last year to the Dry Tortugas with Wes Biggs (and a host of other fine leaders):
Friday and most of Saturday I got a chance to bird with fellow birder Nathan Madison. We had a great time birding starting on Kelley’s Island Friday morning, birding Western Lake Erie Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, and then finishing up at Mohican State Park Saturday afternoon. The weather was very pleasant and birding was good. Although the largest numbers of peak migration had already passed, we still had a decent variety of species with a total of 108 for our trip list.
It was Nathan’s first Spring trip to the famed Magee Marsh Bird Trail. Many birds were up close and personal affording “Miller Views” (a Miller View is a crippling good look at a bird) of birds normally far harder to see in the tree tops. Some birding highlights included Mourning Warbler, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, and Gray-cheeked Thrush. And below, I’ve included some pics from our trip.