Birding and New Photos from Middle Concho Park

It is frigid again here this morning, and not expected to get above 40 degrees with winds up to 25mph.  Possible snow flurries forecasted over the weekend, but not expected to stay on the ground very long.  Stay tuned on that.  Maybe San Angelo will have a white Christmas.  If so, maybe I can get out and get some snowy photos.

Anyway, yesterday was beautiful, got into the 60s, so Ann and I took advantage and went to Middle Concho Park to do a little birding.  We saw 28 species this time. (see list below).  A few that were new, that we hadn’t seen for a long time.  Here are some photo highlights.  EXIF data will be at the bottom of this page.

Western Meadowlark


Vermilion Flycatcher - female

Eastern Bluebird - with attitude

Some of these photos are not up to my standards, but they are passable.  For some reason, I wasn’t on my A-game.  I was making exposure mistakes, accidentally moving my settings and not discovering them until it was too late, then had to try to fix the errors in Photoshop.  I guess I was enjoying the weather too much and not paying attention.  We sure saw a lot of birds though, and here is that list.

  • Mockingbird   8
  • Black Vulture  2
  • American Coot   100+
  • Gadwall   25+
  • House Finch   50+
  • Pied-billed Grebe   14
  • Great Egret   3
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler   75+
  • Golden-fronted Woodpecker   8
  • Western Meadowlark   35
  • Ladder-backed Woodpecker   1
  • American Goldfinch  15
  • Lesser Goldfinch   6
  • Eastern Bluebirds   75+
  • Northern Shovelers   24
  • Double-crested Cormorants   10
  • Great Blue Heron   2
  • White-crowned Sparrow   24
  • White-winged Dove  50+
  • Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
  • Red-tailed Hawk   1
  • Great-tailed Grackle  20
  • Marsh Wren   1
  • Vermilion Flycatcher   4
  • Bewick’s Wren   1
  • Ring-billed Gull   20
  • Red-winged Blackbird   24
  • Mute Swan   3

About the photos:  All photos were taken with my Canon 7D and 500mm lens with a 1.4 tele-converter.  Aperture priority and partial metering.  Handheld from the window of my car.

Western Meadowlark.   1/640 sec. @ f6.3   ISO 400

Vermilion Flycatcher.  1/4000 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3 EV,  ISO  400  Distance  50 feet.

Eastern Bluebird  1/5000 sec. @f5.6  ISO 400  Distance 30 feet.

26 thoughts on “Birding and New Photos from Middle Concho Park

  1. Love the Bluebird with the attitude…we had a pair of Stellar Jays yesterday at the feeder with the same attitude..the other photos are awesome..

  2. Glad even the pros have off streaks. I thought I got a lot of great photos today while the birds were frozen still…must have been a hawk around. I knew it was too good to be true and sure enough I had messed up my settings.

    Your “frigid” cracks me up too. Today it is 35, but sunny and no one in Michigan is wearing a coat and saying “balmy”. lol It looks like we won’t be having a white Christmas either. ):

    • I don’t think it will make to 40, as it is 36 right now as I speak (write). No sun and the wind makes it feel like 25, an it (the wind) whistles throught my pants. 🙂 Not pretty.

      Glad I could give you a chuckle, Melissa. Now git out there and get a picture of that hawk. 🙂

  3. It seems as if lately I just can’t take a clear hand held photo, but yours are lovely as always! Maybe Santa will bring me a tripod for Christmas… 😉

    I believe that the call of the Meadowlark my just be my favorite bird song, and I’m loving that Eastern Bluebird’s Attitude. ~ Lynda

    • Thank you very much, Lynda. My lenses have Image Stablization so that really helps. But a tripod is really a big help. I used to be too lazy to get mine out of the car, but now I use it quite extensively, if I am not shooting from my car window. Even then, I use a bean-bag or a foam-type support to rest on the window sill.

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