Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Very yellow yellow warbler

The warbler season is starting to pick up. I went to a local park where I heard tons of yellow warblers. There were four in one tree! By spishing one came right into a close tree. There red striped breasts are cool.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Warblers Back In Town

Took a birding trip over to Jamaica Bay and Hempstead Lake state park. It is still a little early but we had some nice birds. I had two life birds today.. YAYAYA I spent all winter practicing my warbler calls and it paid off. We started at Jamaica Bay where it seemed slow. I am hopefully going next weekend. We had A black crowned night heron, myrtle and yellow warblers. I perfectly knew the yello warblers song... sweet sweeet so so sweet. They were hard to get pictures of. Then we left for Hempstead. We had yellow and palm right off the bat, but for some reason did not get a picture. Then we started the walk. And my warbler calls paid off again. BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ BEEEEEEEE. I yelled blue winged warbler. The darn thing never left the bushes, teasing us with his song. Then we had a Blue headed vireo. It was awesome looking. One of my life birds. I got one good picture of him. Then right before we got into car, I heard a crazy call> Prairie warbler> had some cool photo ops with this guy. LAst pictures are best
Below is the Yellow Warbler and Yellow rumped Warbler

Blue headed vireo below

Here starts the awesome prairie warbler

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Killdeer and Kestrels

Still waiting for the passerine migrants i decided to shoot the kestrels still hanging around. I found the strategy to get oppurtunities. I used the high northwest winds to might advantage. When you chase them they will fly away quickly. I did the sit in wait game today. I would sit south to where they were hovering and hunting. They all seemed to hunt one patch north to east. They would hover then move 20 feet to te right and hover. But the way i got my shots was when they north wind hit them right over my head. The only problem they were so fast and so close it was actually hard to get them in frame and focused. The killdeer were much easier. I heard them fly in. I knew exactly where they would be. There are little stone paths next to field. I got pretty close to these guys. I wonder if the killdeer was sitting on the nest?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

What warbler are you aiming for this spring

You dont understand how these past two months felt knowing warblers were on their way. I started birding two years ago and was mainly into raptors. Now i am starting to branch off into other birds. Therefore this will be my first big spring for warblers. I have all the spots ready to be checked out. Im getting my calls down. The biggest problem for me is telling the diffference between the magnolia and the hooded warbler haha what a bird nerd!! Well Magnolia has to be my favorite warbler. I have never seen one but i really want to. My bud James Vellozzi went to Main last year and got amazing shots of magnolia and blackburnian warblers. He also got some awesome shots of cerulean here in NY. These are three species i have never seen but i am hoping to see this spring.

Here are pictures James vellozzi took of these species. He is still updating his new website but sent me these shots through email last year. His website jamesvellozzinaturephotography.com If anyone is wondering hes the one that took the header shot. I missed that day :(

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The late short eared

Here are the pictures from the short eared owl. I did not get good shots of them. But that is ok because i had many oppurtunities earlier in the winter. I am so happy about these Owls because i waited two years to get them at this park which is 5 minutes from my house. I am also the only lucky guy that sighted them here this year. It was really windy and they jetted around being chased by crows. The wind pushed the bird in the pictures backwards with his butt facing me . So my best picture is his butt.... :( well I went crazy with joy when i saw them so here are some pictures.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Better kestrels

My third try at the kestrels paid off. I ended up getting some nice shots. Also 2 short eared Owls played a nice surprise. They have been found here twice in the last two years, so i feel happy that i found them. I will post those later. Anyways the kestrels! This park is located on the hudson river. There are many migrants that follow the river and land here. So, there are usually lots of kestrels. If there are 50 kestrels that come here and go, one will have to be a good bird that lets me get some good shots. Even though i got some good shots, my card filled up right when he was 20 feet away. Urrggg never perfect

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Waiting for Warblers

I have been mostly a raptor guy since i started birding 2 and a half years ago. But i am starting to spread tot he passerines. I want to get some good warbler shots, so i need to be perfect. I need to get their calls down pat. I made warbler flash cards just likee i make spanish flash cards. Yellow warbler on front, and sweet sweet so so sweet on the back. I am going to the store to hopefully buy a cd, with bird songs. Then instead of listening to regular music in the shower i will listen to the black throated blue warbler haha. Warbler season is really only a few weeks away and I have a lot of work to do. I have a place I am going where there are the following warblers nesting
1.) Cerulean
2.) Hooded
3.) prarie
5.)Blue winged
6.) golden winged
7.) black and white
during migration i saw black throated blue and black throated green and chesnt sided warbler too.

The early migrants are on the way though. At a local park yesterday i came up with chipping sparrows, pine warblers calling, a palm warbler, my first osprey, and kestrels, and bluebirds.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Brawl of the Hawks

Yesterday i went to a local park that has a large field. It contains bunches of kestrels during the migration time. There were 3 or 4 yesterday. But they dont like me. We would walk on side of the field and none would be there. So we look and yup they are on the other side of the field. So we make are way to the other side. With out us seeing we look back and they are now hovering where we stood 2 minutes ago. 4 kestrels and not one pictures yesterday, well ill try again today. The coolest part of yesterday was a male harrier, he usually flew by relatively close. when i was leaving him and a red tail started going at it. The red tail took the harriers attention off me and i took some shots. Harriers have been a hard species to get pictures of.

A little out of focus but i got the two in the same frame

the harrier dipped and dived

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Some more Tail

Here is another set of pictures from the very cooperative Red-tail. This was at a local park so he is very calm around humans. If only Rough legged Hawks were like this. I find this time of year is abd and boring for birds. Its too later for winter birds and too early for the migrants. Maybe i should use this time to pay attention in school :)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Red tail showing some leg fuzz

Luckily this is a male red tail because his legs are pretty furry. This is the same Red tail from the mating pair. He came right in and sat on a pole 10 feet away( future post) but right now is the red tail hovering and landing. I think they are my best Red tail shots. Tell me what ya think!