Saturday, September 30, 2006


Being out for a drive this evening taking photos of the beautiful autumn leaves; I did not have my telephoto lens handy when I saw this Moose ahead of me on the road. So, I held my small fixed lens camera out my open car window and managed to get this one photo before it left the road and entered the woods.

1st winter Yellow-rumped Warbler

A feature which makes the Yellow-rumped Warbler easily identifiable is the yellow spot on its rump. Today this little 1st winter Yellow-rumped Warbler flitted about in the shadowy parts of our feeder area but its yellow rump immediately disguinished it from the other small birds there.
I had done a posting on the juvenile stage of the Yellow-rumped Warbler on August 25th; this can be found in the Archives section of this blog at 2006-08-20

Friday, September 29, 2006

Fleet-footed Motion

Thursday, September 28, 2006

American Woodcock (Scolopax minor)

Although the leaves on the ground might suggest the fall, these pictures of an American Woodcock were actually taken on March 31, 2006. A Woodcock is probably one of the most un- expected birds that I thought I would be able to take a close up photo of, for of the ones I had seen before were usually viewed from the tail end of a quickly departing bird. However it was a late afternoon in March '06, when looking out onto our bird feeder area I saw this bird steadily feeding right below our window! I had the opportunity to take many, many pictures and when I turned from the window, it was still feeding.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Merlin (Falco columbarius)

Although some refer to the Merlin as a Pigeon Hawk, this is a misnomer as it is not a hawk at all but a falcon! This was a wonderful and unexpected sighting today as it is seldom that I get a chance to see and take a picture of a Merlin that is stationary.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Pine Warbler (Dendroica pinus)

With its white wing bars and yellow eye ring there was no mistaking this male Pine Warbler. This was the first glimpse I have had of this species this year. Found along a walking trail in an olde stand of Pines, this friendly little warbler allowed me some very close up views for picture taking yesterday.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Osprey in Flight

I have been waiting all summer to get some good close up views of an Osprey and yesterday I had my chance. I was sitting in my car beside the river watching a group of Common Mergansers upstream having a fine time swimming, diving and splashing in the water; and I was hoping that they would swim downstream a little closer to me.
I was taking a few photos of a Spotted Sandpiper closeby when I heard the whistling sound of an Osprey and I watched it land at the top of a tree across the river from me. Then the waiting game began. If I could sit quietly and have the patience to wait I would finally get my chance for that long awaited picture opportunity.

When the moment came its flight was strong and graceful as it swooped from the tree top, then the Osprey made a turn and flew up river out of sight.

Friday, September 22, 2006

juvenile Eastern Phoebe

When I saw this bird perched on old telegraph wires this morning I first thought I had taken a picture of a Flycatcher; this was mainly because of the yellow belly. The yellow belly is very evident in the cropped closeup to the upper right. However other features did not seem to fit and I kept hestitating to id it as a Flycatcher.

The bird in the photo had a dark, flat, rounded head and its bill was black; and these are characteristic features of an Eastern Phoebe. Upon checking with The Sibley Guide to Birds I noticed that he had included a picture of a juvenile Eastern Phoebe which has a yellow belly from June to November! Although I often see Eastern Phoebes at this same location in the spring it is probably adult Phoebes that I am used to seeing and I had not connected a yellow belly with an Eastern Phoebe before. Other characteristics of Eastern Phoebes are the weak wing bars and smudges on the sides of the breast; both features can be seen in the photo to the upper left. So I have concluded that the bird in the photos I took this morning is probably a juvenile Eastern Phoebe.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Sora (Porzana carolina)

This was the first and only time, I had seen a Sora and when taking the picture I didn't know what it was. I only knew that it was a fascinating find and was definitely a new species to add to my life list. Only after returning home and downloading the picture was I able to identify what I had seen.

I had been walking along the boardwalk at the Sackville Waterfowl Park in May when I photographed this bird.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)

I had noticed a few Song Sparrows and White-throated Sparrows moving among the leaves and branches of a nearby corner of bushes and I decided to check it out further. I made a few pishing sounds ("pish, pish, pish") and much to my surprise a curious male Common Yellowthroat poked his head out of the bushes right in front of me.
This male warbler is easily identified because of the black mask he wears. The photo to the left is of a male Common Yellowthroat that I had taken near the same location in May (2006). I often find these warblers in this same spot each season although this has only been my second sighting of the male this year.
Photos of a female Common Yellowthroat can be viewed at: female Common Yellowthroat

Monday, September 18, 2006

Moth Identification

White Underwing (Catocala relicta)
While sitting in the entertainment area at the Queen's County Fair on Saturday I saw a fairly large moth land onto one of the posts in front of me. And with such a wonderful picture taking opportunity presented to me, I of course took its picture.

Sometimes moth ID is not easy but if the moth opens its forewings, thus showing its underwings, it is often makes the id much easier. This was the case with this moth. The White Underwing is the only moth we would see that has black and white bands on its hindwing and when this moth landed it intitally had its underwings showing. The White Underwing moth has a wingspan of 7 to 8 centimeters. (reference source: A Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America, by Charles V. Covell, Jr. 2005)

Surprising moth sightings continued to be a theme for next I saw a Maple Spanworm Moth (Ennomos magnaria) clinging to the brim of my spouse's hat! That was pretty funny. This moth, with its unevenly, scalloped wings and orange-yellowish colour was clingling onto the hat and at first looked like a small leaf. This also is a fairly large moth with a wingspan of from 4 to 6 centimeters.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Black-throated Green Warbler (Dendoica virens)

I added a new bird to my Yard List yesterday; a Black-throated Green Warbler. I had only seen this species once before, and didn't have any good photos of it, so I was delighted to discover it flitting about among the leaves in our feeder area.

We have seen many different warblers in our yard recently during these late summer days. Its always such a pleasure to see a flash of 'warbler' yellow and detect quick darting movements among the leaves. The trick then is to try to get a picture before the bird disappears into the foilage again!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

White-tailed Deer .. again

While out walking this morning I saw a
White-tailed Deer crossing the railroad tracks
just ahead of me.

American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)

I was surprised that I was able to get quite close to these Black Ducks. I had driven down to a swampy area along an old country road hoping to see something to take pictures of and I found four ducks feeding there.
I got out of my car and took some pictures just standing beside it. I then I edged closer and was able to get some close up photos of their reflections in the still water.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Triplets: Three Fawn

A Doe and her three Fawn. I came across this family of White-tailed Deer yesterday morning as they were attempting to cross the highway. When they saw me they changed their minds and went back in to the woods. Hopefully in the weeks to come I will come across them again and have another photo taking opportunity.