Catching Up !

I’ve been so busy birding and with regular life that every night when I go to write a post sleep seems to win out.  It’s yucky out this morning so I’ll try to update the last 3 days of sightings.

Honey Bees ... a group that is getting ready to find a new home.

Thursday I just bummed around Green Cay Wetlands.  Some people have comfort foods and Birders have comfort patches and GC is mine.  The birding was pretty slow but Linda F. and I did see this cool Bee’s swarm.  The Bee’s have a hive in an Owl box that they have been nesting in for a couple of years and every once in a while the hive gets overcrowded and a new Queen will go off and take a portion of the hive with her.

Friday, which is my Saturday, I ventured up to Riverbend Park in Jupiter.  I was hoping for Swallowtail Kite or Northern Flicker but ended up seeing 5 other species of Woodpeckers and only having a Flicker sit and call at me for half and hour but never once showing himself.

Pileated Woodpecker ... this is a female, the male has a Red mustache

I did manage another nice Piletated Woodpecker shot.  I was watching a pair working over a vine, picking at the berries and she decided to jump over to this Palm and pose for a couple of seconds.

Red-headed Woodpecker ... almost an adult!

I also got another shot of the very young Red-headed Woodpecker.  Like I’ve said before, this is one of the few places in Palm Beach County where you can find this species. I now have pictures of this guy from when he was all Brown to where he is now.  Another couple of weeks and he’ll have his full adult plumage.

Sandhill Crane ... on the nest

For the last couple of years there has been a couple of Sandhill Cranes that have been very successful at raising babies.  I found this one sitting on their nest and hopefully they will be good parents again this year.

Yellow-headed Blackbird ... she is the one right in the middle with the Yellow chest

I was getting a little bummed out having not seen a new bird in a couple of days so I decided to chase the reported Yellow-headed Blackbirds at the Sem-Chi Rice factory.  The reports have been fairly regular for the last couple of weeks but I had only seen one picture so far.  My timing could not have been any worse, 12 noon, 88 degrees and 15-20 MPH winds so I set up my scope on the lee side of my SUV and watched as hundreds and hundreds of Red-winged Blackbirds and Cowbirds were feeding on the left over rice.  I scoped and scoped and waited for 2 hours before finally finding this lone female in amongst the rest of the flock.  The distance and the heat shimmer didn’t make for a good shot but you can see her Yellow chest.  I need to figure out digiscoping as the look through the scope was so much better than this picture would indicate.  The Yellow-headed Blackbird is the 155th bird species I’ve photographed in Palm Beach County this year.

So now that my mood was improved …LOL on Saturday (my Sunday) I headed up to Okeeheelee Park in search of a guaranteed Great-horned Owl on a roost.  All the Birders out there will tell you there are no guarantees in birding and of course this was one of those days … no Owl and really no usable pictures as at about 10am the sky’s opened up as a front moved through.

Racoon

Today I went out to Green Cay with the hopes that the front may have blown something new in.  As I said at the beginning of the post is was an awfully yucky day with a very thick overcast.  There were a ton of Photographers out this morning looking for the Bobcats so Linda and I did one quick loop and the only thing I took a picture was this Racoon hanging by his hind legs and eating all the berries he could get his hands on.  He was quite comical as he was sliding down the branch and eventually fell to the ground.

The weather report for the next couple days isn’t very promising.  I’ll probably try the beach tomorrow since the gray sky’s actually make sea-watching a little easier.

Thank you all for visiting my humble post and I DO, DO, DO appreciate all the wonderful comments.

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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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6 Responses to Catching Up !

  1. mike585 says:

    I like the woodpeckers in particular, Sheriff.

  2. Wonderful shots as expected. I too have a woodpecker from an outing this weekend.

  3. Lady Deidre says:

    Great Photos! Enjoyed!
    God Bless You!

  4. picturepedia says:

    I love those pictures….
    I added them in my blog too..
    Thanks for such a nice blog..enjoyed! 🙂

  5. Rayya says:

    Enjoyed the photos and hearing about the process of trying to get them. You obviously are a very patient & talented photographer. I am amazed by your dedication. Keep it up :-). PS: better luck in getting a better picture of the yellow headed blackbird

  6. Simply gorgeous shots Tom. I know photographing birds is our passion, but always great to see other wildlife in the mix, the bee shot is awesome and I absolutely love the raccoon what a cool shot!

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