Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Nature Keeps The Peace

This is my first year to pay attention to birds migrating through my area. By actively doing this I've added several birds to my life list. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to get viable photos of them all. I've seen the Mississippi kite, male orchard oriole, and Eastern towhee, but can't prove it. Remaining elusive are the male scarlet tanager, summer tanager and painted bunting—my birding buddies at Bluebonnet Swamp have all seen these, with photos to boot. When I voice my frustration at not seeing these birds, they say, "But you got the gray fox! That trumps everything." They are too nice. Nothing too exciting has been seen of late. Below is a new one and a repeat:
Brown-crested flycatcher, Bluebonnet Swamp, 4/18/13.
Not the sharpest shots by any means, sorry. These were taken hand held on a cloudy day.

Stretch....
They have a pale yellow underside. I wish he had turned around to face me. 

The birds are very attracted to all the wild berries. Bluebonnet Swamp, 4/18/13

The Indian pink are blooming profusely.
Bluebonnet Swamp, 4/23/13

Sorry for another pic of the rose-breasted grosbeak. This is his back side.

Both photos taken 4/25/13, Bluebonnet Swamp. Where else?

Broad-headed skink. I can't say he's a handsome fella, but his markings and head color are interesting.
Look at the intricate pattern on his arm.
Bluebonnet Swamp, 4/25/13

Now you see where I got my post title. :)
A sign from Capitol Lakes, 4/27/13




EDIT: Thanks so much to Hilary, of The Smitten Image for selecting my post, Choose Mother Nature in her Phine Photography category! It's always an honor to be chosen. Please visit Hilary's blog and the other POTW recipients.


43 comments:

eileeninmd said...

Beautiful birds, Gail! The Grosbeak is another favorite of mine. The flycatcher would be a new bird for me. Gorgeous photos!

Deanna said...

always stunning, hand-held too.

Indrani said...

Whoa! crisp clear shots! Thanks for this visual treat! :)
Happy WW!

Stephanie said...

Wonderful, my friend! I love the berries :)

Hugs to you!

Sharon Wagner said...

A gray fox is a good one. Your friends are right!

TexWisGirl said...

i spotted one of our great-crested flycatchers here this week - no photos, tho. the berry shot is gorgeous. but the skink wins, hands down. LOVE him!!!

~~~jennifer~~~ said...

I love the photo of the flycatcher with its tail feathers fanned. Beautiful!

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Oh I love the skink picture - that's so cool!

Mitzi said...

Absolutely love the Indian Pink! that is a stunning shot. As always, all of your photos are just lovely...big hugs, xoxo

Renae at simple sequins said...

Oh I love the little rose-breasted guys (gals) that are so fun. The skink is a real animal. I thought that was a slang for a rotten person! hahahahaha. Oh and thanks for the nice compliment. My grandies are so fun to show off (a bit biased, ya know.)

Gunilla B├Ąck said...

Gorgeous shots! I think the skink is very handsome!

Karen said...

Nice ones! Love the flycatcher's tail spread and that skink is a cutie!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

The flared tail feathers of the Flycatcher are gorgeous.I also really like the berries at the tree.Oh,I just enjoyed them all.

hootnonny said...

All are great. Today the berries speak to me!

mick said...

A very interesting post and a great series of photos. I especially like the bird with its tail stretched.

Jacquelineand.... said...

Oh these are beautiful shots Gail (you are much too hard on yourself!) and the skink? His colouring and markings are glorious!

Linda R said...

Amazing photos once again my friend.

Hugs~

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Your pictures are just amazing ... I am so in love with that grosbeak...but everything you show is great...I even love that old skink peeking around at us.

Tree Hugger - Suzan said...

I just shake my head at your beautiful photos Gail!! Striking indian pink - should be vivid red flowers and the flycatcher has a lovely orange and brown tail. Looks like the grosbeak was posing for with one leg up - so cute!!
LOVELY!!! Always!!

Linda said...

The flycatcher photos are both lovely. The yellow underside shows in the second one, with the flared tail. Rose-breasted Grosbeaks are definitely prettier from the front. :) The Indian pink shot is so crisp, it almost looks like 3D. That skink shot is awesome with its great detail.

bailey-road.com said...

Just wonderful shots, Gail! The shot of the berries just grabbed my attention!

Shug said...

You scared me a bit there, with that broad headed skink. It does have some great patterns and color. Are those blackberries growing near the swamp? I do love me some blackberries. Enjoy the rest of this beautiful week...

Starla said...

OHHH! I LOVE the shot of the Indian Pink!

joeh said...

I am not as advid a birder as you and your friends, but I do take notice. My friend and I almost drive off a mountian road while on a fishing trip when we all spotted a scarlet tanagier. None of us had ever seen one before and we spent 1/2 hour following this one around. It was in WV.

Barbara said...

A few years ago I started a notebook to keep track of the birds I spotted...then promptly forgot about it. Sigh. You have an amazing collection!!

Arija said...

Love the splayed tail and the showy grosbeak. I like the way you intersperse your post with other fauna and flora as well.

Brian King said...

I love the grosbeaks, but I've never seen them around here. I think the skink is rather handsome in a reptile sorta way. Beautiful photos!

Evelyn S. said...

I love the skink, but I'm a lizard-lover. Every bird you listed is "foreign" to me. ;-)

Dianne said...

the birds are beautiful
other than crows, morning doves and sparrows I'm never sure what's around me

I love the skink, he's very cool

amazing photos

ladyfi said...

Oh, so many pretty birds shots. The clarity is amazing.

joeh said...

OK, I am a closet Bird watcher:
see http://joeh-crankyoldman.blogspot.com/2011/07/birding.html

and my GG was a "Dixon" so I have to follow but can't figure out how so I will just bookmark!

Laura Delegal - Leroy Photography said...

Love your birds. I think you found your calling. I came across a skink one year with a broad RED head. It was male -- it's mating colors. Coolest thing I'd seen in a long time.

Reena Walkling said...

Beautiful beautiful birds! I've yet to see a Grosbeak!

Bob Bushell said...

Lovely and breathtaking.

Larry said...

All beautiful shots Gail. It's hard to pick a favorite but the Brown-crested Flycatcher is very handsome. Of course I have a prejudice in favor of flycatchers since the Ash-throated nest in my birdhouses. The Skink is very cool too and the Indian Pink is gorgeous!

Donna said...

well deserved award ...your photos are just beautiful as if they birds were in my backyard.

Nora at Island Rambles said...

wonderful close ups of the fly catcher and the grosbeak...both are beautiful birds.

Wally Jones said...

Wonderful photographs! I love them all!
Great shot of the flycatcher.
What a wonderful place that must be!

Chatty Crone said...

Love the spread out tail feathers. sandie

Rambling Woods said...

Your photography is so very enjoyable... Michelle from Nature Notes

EG CameraGirl said...

I know the frustration of not getting photos of the birds I see! They move so quickly! And I have a friend with many birds on his Life List even though he started birding only about six moths before I did. :)

Charlotte Wilson said...

You never fail to amaze me with your gorgeous photos!

Ann said...

Stunning photos. Love the flycatcher tail. Perfection.