Saturday, October 06, 2012

In Between Cub Scout Nature Walks...

I was volunteered to give Nature Walks for groups of Cub Scouts and their parents through parts of Mead Garden all day today. Despite having my camera slung over my shoulder for over 8 hours, I barely took any shots. I was too busy pointing things out to take many photos.

However, I did have a few minutes during lunch and a few minutes once the walks were over and actually got more things on the card than I thought I did. In fact, I almost forgot that my fellow Mead birder friends pointed out a bird to me as I was making my way back for the next group. The first Eastern Wood Pewee of the season. Not the best shot but it counts!

Tricolored Heron

During my lunch break I found my sandwich in the cooler beset by ants. Sigh. Off to circle the lake. More walking instead of relaxing but I can't resist the urge to find something while I am out. At the amphitheater I saw a bird dart into the Virgina Creeper berries. Turned out to be a female Summer Tanager. From below...

Summer Tanager

It didn't take long, though, for a bunch of Red-eyed Vireos to fly in and chased the Tanager away. Then they stood watch for a bit.

Red-eyed Vireo

Down by the lake, a few Ibis, Titmice and herons rested along the shoreline and in the shrubs. I liked this pose of a Tricolored Heron up on the old dead tree over the water.

Tricolored Heron

I headed around the shore and was surprised by a movement at my feet. It was a frog. More surprising was that it did not hop directly into the water as most frogs do. I had to do a little research and discovered this is a Florida Leopard Frog. Neat. I love the way the skin looks painted.

Florida Leopard Frog

This little fella even let me get up close and personal for a more interesting view. It never even tried to move any further.

Florida Leopard Frog

On the far side of the lake (OK, so it is really a large pond...) a number of Red-eared Sliders were sunning on the logs. Most jumped back into the water as kids ran by but the largest paused to look me over.

Red-eared Slider

On the way back to get some more checklists for the next group of Cubs I saw the only raptor we would see all day. A Red-tailed Hawk circled high above and then off into the distance. Didn't even hear a Red-shouldered Hawk today. Weird.

Red-tailed Hawk

I was being distracted most of the day by some birds that were enjoying the Beauty Berry shrubs on the first part of the Nature Walk. Just inside the shade where the shrubs were growing, warblers and thrushes scattered every time we walked through. It was driving me crazy because I knew I could get some shots if it weren't for all the humans in tow.

So, at the end of the day I packed up and made a quiet walk back to the spot. The light had changed so it was all shade but who can complain when you can hangout with Black-throated Blue Warblers enjoying an afternoon snack?

Black-throated Blue Warbler

My feet were killing me by the end of the day but a bunch of warbler shots certainly give me enough lift to make it back home.

No comments: