Sunday, August 27, 2017

"Down the Hatch" with a Great Egret

I feel fortunate to live in a nice neighborhood with lots of trees and a small pond just beyond my backyard.

The environment, plus my bevy of bird feeders, baths and houses, is very hospitable to our feathered friends.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Interesting Feeder Visitor!

Yesterday I spotted at my backyard feeders this Cardinal-sized bird that I did not recognize.

It perched at this tube feeder for a while, at least 15-20 minutes that I observed.
After taking several photographs, I went to one of my go-to bird books to try to identify the type of bird this is.

It has a finch bill, but these colors I have not seen.

So I'm going to for assistance.  The site's bird identification forum never fails in correctly naming bird types or confirming them for me.

This is no exception as the word from a couple fellow birders on tell me this is a Brown-headed Cowbird, a male juvenile.

Young fellow may be on his own for a short time.  I hope you have a nice life and you are welcome at my feeders any time!

I have had adult male and female Cowbirds in my yard before, but never a juvenile.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Cardinals and Hummingbirds Grace Backyard Feeders

My backyard bird feeders have been staying busy this summer. It's been all I can do to keep the tubes and suet holders stocked!
Northern Cardinals (a pair seen here), Carolina Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, Downy and Red-belled Woodpeckers are the most common visitors.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Mississippi Kite and Heron In My Hood!

It's pretty neat (and convenient!) as a birder and nature photographer to have a regular "supply" of birds- large and small- frequent my neighborhood in North Charleston, S.C. We have lots of trees and several ponds so that's a plus, and it's generally pretty quite around here.
Just the other day, I first heard, then spotted, then went inside and grabbed my camera and monopod to try to photograph this bird, perching high atop a pine tree in a neighbor's backyard.

I figured it was a hawk, but have now learned, through a trusted social media site, that it is a juvenile Mississippi Kite. has a wonderful forum for bird identification.

The forum is free to join and use. You just have to sign up (username, password, etc.) and then you can post photos of birds you need help identifying, or help those in such need with your expertise.

This post today took much longer than normal for positive IDs to come in, but it was certainly worth the wait!

A few days after taking the above images, I had another opportunity to photograph a young Mississippi kite.

This one may be the same bird I photographed earlier. The location was different, but also a pine tree in my neighborhood.
I have no question as to this type of big bird.
This, of course, is the magnificent Great Blue Heron, which stood for a long time near the pond that is close to my backyard.
Great Blue was ready for a closeup.  This is a great bird to photograph because it will often be statue-still for great lengths of time.

I continue to see and hear Kites in my neighborhood, so will be alert to more photo ops with this magnificent creature!