Thursday, October 23, 2014

Mead Cruising

Another month has flown past without much birding. Sigh. Job hunting has been more interesting and I had a couple of interviews in the past couple of days so I figured I owed it to myself to hit Mead Botanical Gardens today to relax. Interviews seemed to go well. We shall see how things turn out. Meanwhile, out to get some fresh air.

I was thinking I might not find too much today. Things were quiet and on my first stop just inside the gardens I found a Red-shouldered Hawk perched near a reliable birding spot. There would not be any warblers around here for a while.

Red-shouldered Hawk

Soon, I was at the cement bridge and was starting to hear more birds. I quickly had a male Black-throated Blue Warbler right in front of me but he would never leave the shade for a better shot.

Black-throated Blue Warbler

Farther up the trail I got to the wooden bridge and was happy to see an approaching female Black and White Warbler. She raced around the tree limbs and paid little attention to me as she hunted some morsels for breakfast.

Black and White Warbler

I moved along up the creek and started hear something in the trees but I could not locate the source. I was not even paying attention to the closer side of the creek when I realized that I was standing next to a juvenile Anhinga. Like, 6 feet from me! I had to back up to get this shot with the zoom.


Usually, Anhinga fly off when you get as close as, say, 40 feet. This bird was just afraid of me at all. I have never had that happen before. I got a few more close-up shots and then thanked my new friend for the opportunity to hang out for a few minutes before I headed up the trail.


Nothing else caught my attention up along the boardwalk or through the the Butterfly Garden so I decided to head home. I took a slight detour toward the pavilions and was totally surprised by a flash of black and white. A Red-headed Woodpecker swooped up in front of me and landed on a nearby tree. Too bad the light was in the wrong spot.

Red-headed Woodpecker

I tried to maneuver into a better spot for a shot when a Red-bellied Woodpecker zipped in and chased the other bird away. What to do? Take a shot of the new arrival, of course.

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Nice to have an unexpected bird this morning. I will be sure to start making more bird runs soon. Starting to feel more secure. I am sure one of the interviews will pay off and then I will have a lot less birding time during the weeks. Having a job, though, is still Priority 1. I will take the birds where and when I can for now.

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