This is a follow-up on my previous post, “Birding at the Mud Hole”. Ann and I returned to the scene of the crime a couple of days later. Again there was about the same birds and activity as before. The water is beginning to recede so it will probably be dry within the week unless we get fresh rains to fill it again. Fortunately, I was able to get some more images for your enjoyment.
All photos were again taken from the shelter of my mobile bird blind, AKA 2016 Ford Escape. I have been using my Canon 7D Mark II and a Tamron 150-600mm lens, hand-held or resting on my SafariPak beanbag. For convenience, and not to have to change settings often because of fast action, I was at shooting at Shutter Priority at about 1/2000 sec and Auto-ISO. It works well for me and I only need to adjust my EV setting ocassionaly with my thumb on the big wheel. Then I let the good times roll. 🙂 The Auto-ISO on that 7D Mark II, by the way, is excellent. It is very much worth the price of admission. As with all images in my posts, click on any image to see enlargements, especially if you are viewing this on a computer.
I must confess, although we did see the Yellow-breasted Chat again, this image was one that I captured during our first visit.
Identifying birds can sometimes be difficult. At first, I thought that this was a female Painted Bunting. But after checking my guides I came to the conclusion that it is, indeed, a first year male. But, don’t despair, it will soon shed that bland clothing for the beautiful colors that we all know and love in the male. Oh, for any critics out there, actually he won’t shed the clothes, but his colors will turn. I still think he is a cutie.
Of course, there always has to be the pre-requisite Northern Mockingbird hanging around. But he is the Texas state bird, so we are honored to have his presence.
The White-crown Sparrows are here in abundance right now. They have a beauty all of their own.
This Yellow Warbler presented a challenge. He was about 30 yards away and was very tiny and amid some foliage. He was singing his heart out.
An even bigger challenge was this Pyrrhuloxia. He was about 80 yards away and atop a tall tree. He also was warming up his voice. I steadied the camera on my bean bag and held my breath, much like shooting a rifle. In my viewfinder, he wasn’t much larger than my focus point. But thanks to my great Canon equipment and a little darkroom work, I came away with this acceptable image.
Just before we left, this Baird’s Sandpiper came gliding in, to do a little feeding along the mud hole.
I hope you enjoyed our little visit to the Mud Hole. I will be returning soon, with more photos from around the area.