Nighthawk and a Roadrunner

102° today, the eleventh day of 100° or hotter.  The average here in San Angelo is 18 days per year of 100° days.  The record was in 2011 when we had 100, yes, that’s right, 100 days of 100° or more.  I hope we don’t break that record.

Anyway, we can’t stay in forever.  We do venture out sometimes earlier in the day, which was the case today.  We decided to take a drive through San Angelo State Park.  We saw the usual summer residents of sparrows, mockingbirds, etc.  Also, several quail scurrying through the deep grassy areas.  Of course, I was on the eye out for photo ops.

Driving out to the Isabel Harte section of the park, we spotted this Common Nighthawk.  On top of that, as I was taking this photo, Ann spotted another one on another tree branch about 20 yards away.  Of course, it flew before I had a chance at it.  I am always amazed at the camouflage of these birds.  It is so easy to miss them.

Common Nighthawk

Common Nighthawk

There wasn’t too much action after that.  The temp started climbing and most of the small birds that we saw, were looking stressed.  But as we decided to leave we spotted this Great Roadrunner in a tree.  It had just given chase, unsuccessfuly, to a Cactus Wren.  While it was resting and catching it’s wind from that, I was able to get this photo.

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

So that is it for this post.  I’ll probably try to make to the local city parks sometime during the upcoming week.  We’ll see what has been happening there.

Of course, it behooves me to also give you this update:

My new “World of Bob Zeller – Outdoor Photographer” DVDs are here. Outstanding collection with great sound track. 100 of my best images; birds, landscapes, and others.   Better than my book. Produced by DSTappan Productions of Knoxville, Tennessee. Price is 25.00 that includes Texas tax and shipping. Local residents only 20.00 if I can deliver it to you. I do business the old-fashioned way, just a handshake. You mail me a check to: Bob Zeller, 4401 White Ash Ln., San Angelo, TX 76904-4528, and I will get one shipped to you. Also, my phone is 325-944-1839 or e-mail me at  I have many references if you need.

It has gotten great reviews from the people that have purchased them.  If you purchase one and don’t like it, (highly unlikely, I think), I will return your money.

Thank you and happy birding!!

Images from Memorial Day Weekend

The weather has been pretty un-settled in Texas as most of you know.  Consequently, my forays into the field to get photographs have been limited the past several days.  However, what I did get, I think you will enjoy.

This first one is of a Franklin’s Gull that I captured at  the now partially full O. C. Fisher Reservoir.  Ann and I had driven out to check on the new water level.  Far in the distance, we saw some birds in the air.  They were so tiny that I couldn’t make out what they were.  I hand-held my Canon 7D MkII and Tamron 150-600mm lens as steady as I could.  I managed to get the auto-focus locked on.  I squeezed he shutter and got this and several other images.  At home in the computer I enlarged the image so I could see what it was.

Franklin's Gull original photo from the camera, at 600mm.

Franklin’s Gull original photo from the camera, with a 600mm lens.  Before I took this shot, the bird was merely a dot with the naked eye.

Franklin's Gull - heavily cropped image

Franklin’s Gull – heavily cropped image

I love my camera setup.

From other areas of San Angelo State Park, I got these photos.

Common Nighthawk

Common Nighthawk

Northern Bobwhite

Northern Bobwhite

This morning we ventured out to Spring Creek Park, the site of severe damage from the storms that we have had.  It appears that there is still some unrest as the birds were not available in abundant numbers.  However, I did manage to the this nice image of a Bullock’s Oriole.

Bullock's Oriole

Bullock’s Oriole

I would like to mention that O. C. Fisher now has about 17,000 acre feet of water.  However, even though it now looks like a large lake, that is still only about 12% of what it could hold.  The capacity of the lake is 115,742 acre feet.