Name That Bird

Today I'm excited because I went birding for the first time ever.
But first things first ... congratulations Karen ... the Gruener Generator selected your name from the comments yesterday ... and you've got a signed copy of 
What's Under Your Cape? coming your way. I'll be in touch to get your postal address soon.

Now about that bird trip; how many of these feathered friends can you identify? 
And does that change if they're flying rather than perched? 
What about if they're male or female? 
Juvenile or adult?

My mind's on overload with the new information I took in today; guess how many species our guide helped us find and identify? Seventy one! Turns out winter birding can be pretty fruitful because the absence of leaves on the trees makes them easier to find. We spotted lots of ducks, geese, and hawks for sure, but we also saw some song birds like those pictured on my magnetic souvenir: Northern Cardinal, Robin, Gold Finch, Red-winged Blackbird, Eastern Bluebird. 

My favorite had to be the Vermillion Flycatcher, in part because it's one we knew was around but had missed ... twice. First we were told there'd been a sighting earlier this morning before we'd arrived at the Visitors' Center, then on our way out, we were told that ten minutes after our departure, that beauty had been spotted again. We watched and waited before deciding it was time to leave ... and as we drove off, sure enough, there is was, as if to thank us for our patience and gift us with a parting dance, showing off its brilliance and splendor. 
Have you ever seen this magnificent male specimen?

Click for source.

Some others that amazed me include the Eastern Phoebe, the Crested Cara Cara, the juvenile Bald Eagle, Meadowlark, the Roseate Spoonbill, the American Widgeon, the Loggerhead Shrike, White-tailed Kite, a Vesper Sparrow.

As a bonus, we also got to watch two river otters playfully splashing around ... and an alligator {yikes!}.

And the whole time we were learning from our gracious and knowledgeable host Bill, I kept reflecting on the lessons we can learn from the birds, based on the lyrics of a church song from my childhood:
Look at the birds in the air ...  they neither sow nor reap. 
 Oh, to be more like those birds,
to fly through life so effortlessly and without worry.

How did you spend this last Saturday of January?


  1. I like watching the birds, too, Ms Gruener! Sometimes I wish I could fly, but swimming, I think, is just as fine!

  2. I agree, bird watching is lots of fun. We're on Maui right now and yesterday I saw a light Gray bird with the craziest bright red Mohawk. He made me laugh out loud!
    Grade ONEderful


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