Couldn’t find a single new bird today!

My only target for the day! #116

I actually found 5!!!  I started my morning at Green Cay Wetlands with the only real target bird being European Starling.  I had intended to just enjoy a quiet day not chasing and when I met up with Linda I had already photographed the Starlings.

Purple Martin # 117

We hadn’t walked 20 feet and I noticed a Purple Martin flying overhead.  Green Cay has 4 Martin houses and this is pretty much the time of the year they come back.  There were a couple of males and at least one female already going into the boxes.

So now I’m thinking … great, I’ve got twice what I was expecting today.  Little did I know I’d get 2 more really good species and also a lone flyover Fish Crow.

Sharp-shinned Hawk # 118

Linda and I had made our way into the Chickhee Hut woods and while looking for Warblers and such I spied a Raptor perched way in the back of the canopee.  We discussed the possible candidates for a little bit and fortunately this guy perched for plenty of shots.  Our consensus was that this is a Sharp-shinned Hawk due to the skinny legs, notched tail (visible in other shots) and the fact that the color on his head continues all the way down his neck.  A Coopers Hawk shows a capped look and is a little bigger with a rounded tail.  We watched him fly off and his flight pattern nailed the identity it for me. 

We saw the Fish Crow next which was year bird # 119 and continued walking with a flyby Harrier and Black-crown Night Heron being nice sightings.

Broad-winged Hawk # 120 for the year!!!

We had just exited the Cypress Woods when I noticed a Raptor soaring quite a distance away.  I knew at first sight that it was not our normal Red-shouldered or Coopers.  I yelled out Broad-winged and the Swainsons.  It’s not a great picture but shows the diagnostic White stripe in the tail and the dark edgings to the wings.  I had hope to see one of these during Fall migration and feel so blessed to see one now!

I can’t believe how fortunate I was today and it made it even better that I got to share it with Linda.  Linda has a list for Green Cay that is pushing 160 or so and the Broad-winged may have been a new one for GC.

You can view pictures of all the birds I’ve photographed this year so far here.


About sheriffsmith

I have worked for the Broward County Sheriff's Office the last 13 years and spend most of my free time birdwatching / naturewatching and photographing the birds and nature that I encounter. I believe God has blessed us with a world that is so absolutely fascinating and wonderful and I'm doing my best to discover and show others all that he has provided us with in nature.
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