Saturday, January 19, 2008

Merlin in Merlind (MD)

It was a wonderful Saturday morning birding the Annapolis area. It had been some time since my last visit to the wild bird infested regions about town. Birding is a lot like riding a bicycle. It's good exercise, it doesn't harm the environment and it's relatively easy to pick it back up again after some extended time off.

AMERICAN KESTREL

Grant it, I had trouble placing the unmistakable greetings from a pair of EASTERN TOWHEES. But from the moment I stepped out of the car, it was one great bird after another. The weather was brisk, although not so windy, with a shroud of sun-blocking clouds that dimmed the lights a tad. My sincere thanks to Marshall, from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and his family for allowing me to bird their magnificent property today!

AMERICAN KESTREL

I love the way that jet airliner is in the background while this falcon contemplates his next flight. The KESTREL was sitting on top of this bubble building at the mulching facility at Greenbury Point.

MERLIN

Highlights included a MERLIN, a WHITE CROWNED SPARROW, AMERICAN KESTREL, HERMIT THRUSH and a FOX SPARROW.

FOX SPARROW

The Nature Trail at Greenbury Point surprised me a few weeks ago with a WHITE CROWNED SPARROW. During today's visit, that beautiful bird was there yet again, waiting for me in the exact same spot.

WHITE CROWNED SPARROW

This HERMIT THRUSH found my presence rather interesting. I was pishing and scolding like a TUFTED TITMOUSE to the best of my ability. As bad as I'm sure it sounded, it did manage to get this bird out of the brush and into my camera.

HERMIT THRUSH

IF I can sneak out of diaper duty tomorrow or Monday, I might try to head out for some more birds. I did want to post notice that the second EASTERN SCREECH OWL house is up and ready for occupancy. I have a crisp, well-lit photo of Adam Whitaker's new and improved Owl residence soon! There have been no sightings of our little owl since last Sunday, but I remain optimistic.These last two photos are similar in the way these falcons were staring me down. Sure, the KESTREL is a bit blurry... but in addition to the clouds, it was cold outside too! I am still trying to master my new camera. so I welcome the challenges that go along with cold, copious layers of gray clouds and whatever else mother nature sends my way.

Good birding, be well and enjoy,

Dan

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