Monday, November 3, 2008

Another Merlin in Annapolis

No. Not this bird. The photo above is my son Declan enjoying an afternoon nap with his new friend, The American Kestrel. The stuffed falcon was given to him by the wonderful owners of the West Annapolis Wild Bird Center Bill & Gail Herald. Thanks Bill and Gail!!!My friend Chris Murray and I took a quick hike over to The Annapolis Waterworks Park on Sunday afternoon. Bird-wise, our hike was proving to be relatively slow. Luckily, Chris managed to spot a distant raptorish-looking bird perched on a large, dead tree snag. With my bins, I noticed it was not an AMERICAN KESTREL (Declan's newest buddy), and it wasn't a PEREGRINE FALCON (one of my old swimming buddies), it was in fact a MERLIN. Not only that, it was our second MERLIN in less than a week!We walked over to the bird and noticed it was eating an early dinner. What could it be, I wondered? A mouse? A bird? A Dove Dark Chocolate? I took as many photos as possible in the dark, overcast evening. Despite several attempts, the best I could muster were these grainy photos. That said, a MERLIN is such a stunning bird, I am still proud to present to you these images.Well, as it turns out... one can see a little tiny bird leg being pullled of, thrown around and then tossed aside!

MERLINS are amazing birds indeed. They breed in the Northern Canadian boreal forests, all the way from Newfoundland to Alaska. Lucky for us, these swift hunters winter in the southern United States. This bird might be here for the duration, or it could simply be a migrant, simply taking a moment to pass through our State's Capital? Time, along with several additional visits to this area, will determine if this falcon decided to winter in Annapolis.Hopefully, the next time I locate this bird, it will be in impeccable light. I can only hope.

BUT, the MOST important news of the day is... HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!! It's my Mom's 29th birthday today.

Peace and Love,

Dan

2 comments:

JGirl said...

Lovely shots of the merlin. I'm relatively new to birding but enjoyed finding your site. JGirl

Nervous Birds said...

Thanks JGirl! I hope you stop by every so often. And enjoy your birding (and the upcoming holidays).

Best,
Dan

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