Friday, November 29, 2013
Male Pin-tailed Whydras. Fun fact about this species- it is very hard to get it to breed in captivity because it's a nest parasite, not unlike our own Brown-headed Cowbirds!
Blue Indian Ringneck (also known as Rose-ringed Parakeet to most birders).
Female Eclectus Parrot.
I know that's a ton of pictures, but there's a lot more where that came from! Anyways, we can't go to a parrot expo without leaving with more birds than we started with! We gave Diva, our untame parrotlet, to a breeder who was looking for a female. We may get a tamer baby from her later.
We also adopted a cobalt budgie (budgerigar, or the classic parakeet) named PJ. He's very sweet!
We also have a pair of button quail (Chinese Painted Quail) both females. I was hoping I had gotten a couple but I was unlucky.
Birders, if you wanted to skip all that then you should start reading here. I've learned that Spring = Warblers, Summer = Buntings, orioles, songbirds, Fall= More confusing warblers and sparrows, and Winter = Waterfowl! I've been trying my best to locate waterfowl, as I have only Blue-winged Teal and Ruddy Duck checked off (not counting mallards, canada geese, coots, etc. etc.) and I don't live near water.
We went to Lake Norman on Saturday and I was very happy to check off my first Common Loon! Unfortunately I can't get the pictures up now (which I'm sure you don't need more pictures already...)
Today I did go to Colonel Francis Beatty Park, where some Buffleheads and Green-winged Teal were reported, but the on;y waterfowl I found were Canada Geese and Mallards. :( Hopefully over the long weekend I can wake up early and head over to Lake Wylie to see some waterfowl. Earlier this year we saw many coots and some Red-breasted Merganser (I didn't get to see them- some boaters scared them off!) so maybe I'll get lucky this time (lucky? Hah! Apparently teals and ducks are so common that they're invisible to me!)
Also, I count myself lucky because on Wednesday I found the Carolina Young Birder's Club! I was very happy with this because I've wanted a birding club since 6th grade but I'm just really shy and timid... Glad somebody has the same thoughts as me! :) If you're a birder in the Carolinas between 11-18, join here:
In other news, I really need to work on my novel! November for me is not just birds; it's also NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month! In the span of 30 days you have to type or write a novel! I'm almost at my goal of 15,000 words, and unless I don't type like crazy, I won't reach it! I did the contest last year and got 5 free copies of my novel (which was terrible- this year is much better!) So I better get writing!
Friday, October 25, 2013
Sunday, October 6, 2013
ANyways, my summer was great. If you really want me to explain it all, please check out my Flickr. I took a ton of pictures of birds in Italy.
Today I went on a beginner's bird walk. I'm proud to say I checked off one lifer today- an American Redstart! It was a female. I glimpsed it, and remember IDing it as a female. I got no pictures, however, but I have trip in two weeks to Huntington Beach State Park, SC, where redstarts should be common. I'm super excited to go- there should be a wide variety of shorebirds, some straggling warblers, and the first ducks should be moving in, along with thousands of Tree Swallows and the possibility of seeing a Peregrine Falcon or a Merlin!
Next week is the Big Sit. I don't know if I'll be sitting, but I would like to travel around the park, checking out any interesting birds. The park (Cowan's Ford Wildlife Refuge) is near Latta Plantation, which is a great warbler spot. I'm hoping to check off some lifers there!
Short post, but I'm not dead!
Also- we have two new parrots. Steve is a turquoise Lineolated Parakeet while 'Diva' is a female green Pacific Parrotlet. I don't know if we're going to keep her- she's untame and scared of us. We may give her back to the breeder. Also, I've been thinking about keeping a pair of Zebra Finches, but I'm still researching them.
Saturday, June 29, 2013
Okay, I'm gonna start out with my trip to Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Amazingest trip yet. Saw a TON of lifers and birds I really wanted to see. This is not in order, though.
Torry Island, Fl. On Lake Okeechobee. Very good birdiing spot, saw 2 lifers, Yellow-crowned Night-Heron and 2 Purple Gallinules. Checklist here: http://ebird.org/ebird/ybn/view/checklist?subID=S14529963
Pahokee, FL. We stopped by the lake and I saw a good number of birds. I'm going to let the checklist do the talking. http://ebird.org/ebird/ybn/view/checklist?subID=S14530018
We also went to the Keys and the Everglades, twice. Shark Valley was our second trip into the Glades, saw some lifers here.
At our hotel I saw lifer Magnificent Frigatebirds and some very noisy quaker parrots.
That was as short as I could make it. xD I have tons of pictures and I will share them soon.
I want to make this not just a birding blog but also a parrot blog too. Peanut is my green-cheeked conure and sometimes I itch to write about her. So there will be posts about her.
I'll be going to Italy for three weeks, time for some European birding! :D
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Well, the last week has been my spring break. Honestly all I did was play Minecraft the whole time. But last Saturday was a special bird walk- a field trip to be exact, to Congraree National Park near Columbia, SC. I brought my camera but I still lost the SD card, and now the stupid thing needs to charge (but isn't charging!) Before it stopped working, though, I managed to get some decent pictures. I'll try to upload them if it wants to work for me.
Anyways, I have found my binocs. Just to clear that up.
At Congaree, we saw a huge amount of birds. The week before spring break, I saw a Barn Swallow (I was excited to see a migrant) but I had no idea so many migrants were already here! We saw…
-Lots of blue-gray gnatcatchers* (lifer, I'll put a * next to my lifers)
-Three Pileated Woodpeckers*, I got a blurry picture of one on a log, a gorgeous male.
-One Barred Owl, a beautiful bird. I got 2 decent pictures of him.
-A pretty singing male Hooded Warbler* (lots more were heard)
-Parulas and waterthrushes* (I didn't get the best looks, but I'm counting them.)
-Two Great Egrets
-Rusty Blackbirds* (these weren't at Congaree, just at a nearby area we scouted. I just looked these guys up, and I'm very surprised to see they're considered Vulnerable. L )
-Red-headed Woodpecker* (Near Threatened)
-Golden-crowned and Ruby-crowned Kinglets, we had a very nice close-up of a Ruby-crowned flycatching (almost 5 feet away)
-Anhingas (I'm pretty sure I've seen these before, but confused them with comorants.)
-White-eyed Vireo (I didn't see it, though)
-Black-and-white Warbler (Didn't see this one either)
-Prothonotary Warbler (Again, didn't see it)
-Lots and lots of Yellow-rumped Warblers (Butterbutts!)
-Northern Rough-winged*, Barn, and Cliff Swallows*
-An American Kestrel (I saw it flying and didn't know what it was.)
I know we saw more, but I really can't remember them all. We saw and heard the really common birds like cardinals, titmice, chickadees, etc.
It was really fun and I'd recommend Congaree any day.
Not much after that, although I haven't noticed any spring migrants, unfortunately. And today I was listening to the robins sing and realized that my Mystery Bird's voice sounds awfully like a robin's. I'm convinced it's some species of thrush. Hopefully it will come back soon.
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
So, I've been posting this around because I'm in need of some help. I'm a pretty decent birder, right down to the sparrows. (Ducks, shorebirds, and warblers are my weak spots.) So, last summer I heard and glimpsed a bird I've never seen before. (I hope these aren't too big!)
This bird looks like an Orchard Oriole, but its song is completely different. Lemme try to type this down. (Too's are lower pitched, Tee's are higher, and te's are middle pitched.)
The song is clear, like a White-throat's. You can whistle it. I've checked the songs of every bird Cornell has to offer (that looks like this) and none are remotely close. Orchard Orioles, towhees, redstarts, I've checked their calls. This bird is a mystery to me.
Remember, I live in NC, and I heard this all summer. It drove me crazy.
Also, I'm getting new feeder guests. I'm getting a single junco, at least two yellow-rumps, who should be moving out soon. Grackles and Brown-headed cowbirds, which the latter I haven't seen in forever, have started to visit, along with an adorably chubby Mourning Dove.
Also, I'm still without my binocs. :'( I didn't bring them anywhere, so they're somewhere in my house. So… yeah. Happy birding to the rest of you!
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Well, it definitely is for my feeder flock! Today alone, in pairs, I saw…
Two pairs of American Goldfinches
One pair of Purple Finches
One pair of Brown Thrashers
One pair of robins
One pair of mockingbirds
And one pair of cardinals! And on my last bird walk, we (Audubon members) found a –fresh- and active nest of a pair of red-shouldereds! One of them kept watch and screeched at us. Also on that trip I saw my lifer Ruddy Duck and a Great Egret, which is considered rare according to eBird. We heard a Pileated but my lifer continues to elude me. We found a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, a nice pretty male, a bunch of squabbling Brown-headed Nuthatches, a Winter Wren, a Cooper's Hawk, some Pied-billed Grebes, Ring-billed Gulls, two great blues, a Fish Crow, lots of Canada Geese, a ruby-crowned kinglet, and a mystery bird so high pitched that some people couldn't hear it. I think it was the ruby-crowned kinglet.
What else… this Saturday is one of the big field trips to Sandhills NWR. My dad's working, and I'm so sad I can't go! In a few weeks they'll be going to Congaree- I would LOVE to go with them! That'll be in April and I'm sure so many warblers I have yet to see will be there! (And I've heard rumors that it might hold some of the last remaining Ivory-billed Woodpeckers or Bachman's Warblers. I know it's a rumor, but still!) I hope we can make it.
Ugh, I think the worst thing yet is that… I lost my SD card! NO!! I think at school. It had brought it to upload the American Coot picture last post, but it must've fallen out of my pocket or the laptop… that had all of my pictures! All of them! And now I have no idea how much data my camera can hold, so I'm taking a break with it. I also misplaced my binocs, the good pair. I haven't gone on a bird walk for a while, since my grades. As long as I lost it at home, I suppose.
Well, that's it for now. Happy birding!