Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Breakfast with an Indigo Bunting

Yesterday's post hinted at a special bird I heard while birding Mead Garden. We were in the middle of looking at a Red-shouldered Hawk nest when I began to hear a song bird calling from the trees near the dried up creek. My curiosity gets the best of me at these times and I disappeared into the vegetation to find the singer. I had to pause several times to fix the location, at times cupping my hands around my ears to zone in on the location.

I was close. It was loud. Still, I couldn't see the bird and did not recognize the song. I walked off the river bed and into the shrubs and stood for a minute as I watched the breeze stir the grasses and branches. Finally, I saw a flash of color about 30 yards in front of me. Bright blue and still singing. The bird briefly jumped up onto a grass stalk and its weight dropped them both to the ground and out of sight.

Then it bobbed back into view.

Indigo Bunting

An Indigo Bunting! In full Indigo plumage!! In May!!! The birds that Winter in my backyard left weeks ago so this was the latest I have seen one around town. At first I figured it was a Blue Grosbeak since I couldn't place the song. It was different than the songs I am used to. I was firing away and managed a few photos to cherish.

Indigo Bunting

The bird would strip a few seeds and eat as the wind blew through the grasses but the bird didn't even seem to care if I was there. Every now and then it would burst into song again.

Indigo Bunting

It would then grab some more seeds and chow down. Then repeat the process over and over. Wow.

Indigo Bunting

Time was running out for my free time and I shot about 150 images and then quietly retreated back to the river bed and exited the area as the bird continued its breakfast and cheery singing. I thought I was happy with shots in the backyard a few weeks ago. This takes the prize for me.


warriormom said...


J. Andrew Boyle said...

Had to remember to breathe! We don't get them this pretty in Florida that close.