For you who may be unfamiliar to the birding vernacular, a lifer is a bird that an individual sees for the very first time, then adds it to his or her’s ‘life list’. Currently, my life list is at 285. That is the total that I have compiled since I got into birding about six years ago. Since there are nearly 800 species in the state of Texas alone, it certainly is nothing to brag about. I would like, though, to eventually get to 300. At my age, that is a manageable goal. So, in that vein, I can tell you that I got my 285th yesterday.
Having had a successful little tour of Spring Creek Park, seeing several species and getting some photos, we ventured over to Middle Concho Park to see what might be there. As we drove through, we saw an area where many small birds were darting through the Live Oak and Mesquite trees. Titmice, Vermilion Flycatchers, and American Goldfinches. All of a sudden a yellowish bird caught my eye. I knew instantly that it was not a goldfinch that I was looking at. Then I remembered that a couple of other birders had mentioned that a Pine Warbler was running with a bunch of goldfinches. After getting several shots off with my Canon 7D Mk II and Tamron 150-600mm lens, I looked at the images on the back of the camera and compared them to my Stokes Guide. Lo and behold, a Pine Warbler.
A Pine Warbler is very, very rare to the Concho Valley and Tom Green County, so this was an exciting find. This image is one of about seventy-five that I tried to get. The bird is quick and fast, and I didn’t get very many usable photos.
After getting that photo, I got a shot of this very cooperative Yellow-rumped Warbler.
As I mentioned above, previously we had been to Spring Creek Park. Here are a few photographs from there.
This White-breasted Nuthatch is the first that I have seen in this park in a couple of years, although I know they are present. Just not always visible.
In the same area this Bewick’s Wren was flitting among the brush……..
……..along with this beautiful Eastern Phoebe.
So, all in all, a pretty fun day, when I can come away with a few acceptable images to post here.
On another note, this is the time of the year when there are various Christmas Bird Counts going on. This link to the Lost Pines was sent to my by Garth Beyer. Check it out, it may be something you may be interested in. It sounds like fun. http://www.visitlostpines.com/hyatt-lost-pines/activities/christmas-bird-count.aspx. I probably won’t participate. I am at that age that I would rather stay by the fire with liquid refreshment on those upcoming cooler days.