Osprey and Great Horned Owl


In the past few days I have been making frequent trips to my favorite birding haunts.  The fall migration still is a bit slow here as I have been waiting for the winter birds, i.e. waterbirds, ducks, etc.  But having said that I have spotted at least two Osprey that have been hanging around, and I have been able to get decent photographs of them.  Here is one that I got today.  Ann was with me and we spotted it high atop a tree on a leaf-less stub.  Apparently his appetite had been sated as he was just preening himself.

Osprey

Osprey

Yesterday my friend, Charles Yuker, had asked to go with me as he had bird photography questions and wanted to pick my brain.  We had crossed the river near Spring Creek Park and were on a little lane when he said, “There’s and owl!”  It was on a mesquite tree branch on his side of the car, out of my sight because of my car’s roofline.  I stopped immediately, and we assessed the situation, not wanting to startle the bird.  Since I could not see it yet, I opted to drive very slowly on for another 50 yards, then stop the car so we could look back.

We got out of the car, and crept along the treeline by the river, keeping in the dark shade.  Fortunately, initially it had been facing away from the car, so it had not seen us up until this time.  We started shooting, and it kept watching us for any agressive moves.  We took several images and I have posted one below for you.  As we decided to return to the car, the owl then decided he had enough and it headed elsewhere as well.  It took to another tree about two hundred yards away, but not in a good position for satisfactory photos.

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl

But seeing these birds and a few other regulars, are keeping my enthusiasm alive in anticipation for things to come.   They definitely made our day.  Click on any image to see nice enlargements.

Some Labor Day images


Labor Day.  You certainly won’t catch me doing much laboring.  Even though I was aware that there may be too many people doing their outdoor things, Ann and I decided to go to San Angelo State Park to visit the bird blind, AKA the Wildlife Viewing Center.  After stopping there, we did a little drive-around through the park.  There still aren’t too many birds, but we managed to see a few or the regulars.  Here are three nice photographs that I stumbled into getting.  First up was this little juvenile Northern Cardinal that I captured at the blind.

Northern Cardinal juvenile

Northern Cardinal
juvenile

When we took the little drive around the park I managed to get these images.

Bobwhite in tree

Bobwhite in tree

I love those Bobwhites.  Along the way, we saw another covey of them, about twelve, but they scurried into the underbrush before I could even get my camera ready.

We witnessed several nighthawks in the air when we previously entered the park.  Driving around, we saw two perched on mesquite tree branches.  Here is the best of the two.

Common Nighthawk

Common Nighthawk

Migration is only a few weeks away, so soon I might have some more photographs for you.  We are planning another birding trip to the Big Bend later this month, and my new Canon 70D is supposed to arrive today.  So exciting things are looking up.