Seven years and still counting. A one, anna two, anna three……… :-)


Yesterday I celebrated my 7th anniversary of beginning this blog.  In those years I have accumulated 45,320 readers in 164 countries.  Together they have visited 205,231 times.  This will be my 926th post.  I still don’t know how I have been able to come up with that much subject matter.  I cheat by putting in a bunch of pictures to fill it up.  I also try to make catchy titles that get your attention.  But whatever works.  Anyway, I really appreciate my readers and fellow bloggers that make the job easier.

Migration has started and the fun has begun.  For example, yesterday Ann and I visited San Angelo State Park.  Up in the Isabelle Harte picnic area we spotted some activity in a group of live oak trees.  We had gotten up early, got a cup of coffee and a burrito to go at Jack N’ Jill Donut shop.  We took that with us, and when we spotted that forementioned activity in the trees, we decided that would be a great place to just watch and eat our little breakfast.

Well, we were kept busy as we spotted several birds and warblers in the trees, including Yellow Warblers, Wilson’s Warblers, Nashville Warblers, Least flycatchers and the highlight of the day, an American Redstart, which was a lifer.  Also we saw a Willow Flycatcher, another lifer. What a thrill!

This morning we returned to the same spot, with another burrito and coffee, hoping to catch some more new birds for the year.  We missed the American Redstart as I wanted to get some photos, but it was not present. I  failed at getting photos of it yesterday.  Try as I may, I could not get it into my viewfinder fast enough.  It kept flitting in and out of the leaves, teasing me.  Anyway to digress, we were not disappointed otherwise.  I got nice photos of a Great Crested Flycatcher.

Then just before we were leaving, a Peregrine Falcon flew overhead.  It was flying low and I suspected it was about to light somewhere near.  We drove out of the trees and about 100 yards away, it was sitting atop a picnic table shelter.  Surprisingly, I was able to drive up to about 25 feet away.  It was a juvenile bird and was still trusting humans.  I circled the shelter in the car at a distance, getting shots from different angles.  He just perched and watched me for around 15 minutes.

In other news, I came across three more photos from our Uvalde trip last month.  Here they are.

White-tailed Haek

White-tailed Hawk

Crested Caracara

Crested Caracara

Green Jay

Green Jay

The following are photos that I have gotten since my last post.  We have visited local San Angelo parks including Spring Creek Park, Middle Concho Park, and of course, San Angelo State Parks.

Bullock's Oriole - female

Bullock’s Oriole – female

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Northern Cardinal - female

Northern Cardinal – female

Canyon Towhee

Canyon Towhee

Great Crested Flycatcher

Great Crested Flycatcher

Peregrine Falcon

Peregrine Falcon

Peregrine Falcon lifting off from perch.

Peregrine Falcon lifting off from perch.

That’s it for this post.  I still have more photos to go sort through and of course, I hope to get some more nice ones in days to come.  So stay tuned…….  It looks like many more burrito and coffee breakfasts to come. 🙂

I would like to mention to you to click on any image to see enlargements.  Also any photo you see on my posts are available as prints.  Contact me if you are interested.

Birding fun in Uvalde, Texas


Okay, boys and girls, hang on to your hats.  I have a brazilion photos to show you from our two day trip to Uvalde, Texas.  At only about 195 miles south of San Angelo, it has much to offer in the way of birding.

Green Jay

Green Jay

First, I would like to mention that we arrived Wednesday afternoon at the Live Oaks Bed and Breakfast.  Owned and operated by Pat and Gaye Morris, it is a perfect way to spend a few days.  All the amenities that you would expect, plus a great breakfast.  Four rooms inside the main house, and three individual casitas of which we stayed in one called “Treehouse”.  No, silly people, we weren’t in a tree, but a wonderful little comfy cabin.  Click the above link for more information.

We decided to come to Uvalde when a Facebook friend, Bob Shackleford mentioned that his place was nearly overrun with Green Jays.  That really got my attention, as that was one bird that have dreamed of seeing and photographing for years.  I contacted him and invited myself to visit him when we came to Uvalde.  He has this delightful little bird blind, and sure enough there were more than enough Green Jays to satisfy any photographer.

Bob Shackleford's bird blind

Bob Shackleford’s bird blind

We were able to check in early Wednesday afternoon, so I called Bob and we decided to pay him and his wife, Marianne, a visit.  He wanted us to try out the blind immediately, and for a few minutes, I was rewarded with photo opportunities right away.

Green Jay

Green Jay

Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinal

We didn’t stay in the blind very long since it was very hot, and we wanted to visit with Bob and Anne (pronounced Anna) a bit longer, before we had to go check in to our little casita.  Before we left, we made arrangements to return the following day which was my birthday, and spend the day.  Anne, had already baked a cake for my birthday.  How great is that?

Green Jay

Green Jay

The following morning, after a sumptuous breakfast, cooked by Gaye, we headed back to the Shacklefords.  We headed right for Bob’s “Chicken House Bird Blind”.  Of course, I first photographed another Green Jay, then a few others.  Here are a few highlights.

Green Jay

Green Jay

Northern Cardinal, female

Northern Cardinal, female

Yellow-rumped Warbler - Audubon variety

Yellow-rumped Warbler – Audubon variety

Black-crested Titmouse

Black-crested Titmouse

Later, after going back to our room for a brief nap, we returned to have supper with the Shacklefords.  Wow!  That man knows how to use a barbeque grill.  He grilled some chicken breasts along with a bunch of veggies.  Then to top it off we had some of Anne’s pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting and pecans.  Fantastic!

After that, Bob mentioned that we should drive out along the highway, as we could probably find some various hawks.  So we all piled into our little Ford Escape and headed out.  Here are some of the highlights of that drive.  There are many.  I forgot to mention, click on any of the photos in this post and you will see beautiful enlargements.

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk in flight

Red-tailed Hawk in flight

Forgive the clipped wings in the above photo, but I thought it was too beautiful to leave out of this post.

Scaled Quail - in late afternoon light.

Scaled Quail – in late afternoon light.

Harris's Hawk

Harris’s Hawk

Two Crested Caracaras share a utility pole crossbar.

Two Crested Caracaras share a utility pole crossbar.

Swainson's Hawk

Swainson’s Hawk

A drive along a country drive wouldn’t be complete with seeing one of these vultures.

Black Vulture surveys the landscape.

Black Vulture surveys the landscape.

After saying goodbye to the Shacklefords, and promising to return in a few months we headed to our room, feeling great about our birding and photographic adventures.  We had hoped to see a Great Kiskadee, but that will have to wait until the next time.

The next morning after another great breakfast, I began my first day as an eighty-year old, and we headed back to San Angelo.  We were making good time, so we made a brief stop at the South Llano River State Park.  They have wonderful bird blinds there so we had time to check out one of them.

Nashville Warbler photographed at South Llano State Park

Nashville Warbler photographed at South Llano River State Park

For the trip, we saw a total of 40 species of birds.  We added two to my life list: Green Jay and Long-billed Thrasher.  That life list now stands at 275.  Maybe I can get to 300 before I turn 90.

For my 2014 Birding Big Year list, I added those two plus the Crested Caracara and the Harris’s Hawk, bring the total to 189.  Only eleven to go to make my goal of at least 200 species seen this year.

I feel great and I think it is going to be fun being an 80 year-old.  That is as long as I stay away from those senior centers and not let those old people influence me. 🙂