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Archive for April, 2012

Last week I was surprised in the River bottoms by this beautiful Male American Redstart; a warbler:

 

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Just a picture (HDR) upstream on Carver on April 2, 2012:

Between Hasty and Carver

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This beautiful male Baltimore Oriole arrived at my orange feeder a week ago; I moved the orange feeder to the garden fence so I could get a few pictures with a Canon EF600L Lens; he returned about 4 times; then I never saw him again. Apparently he was just migrating north. I was first alerted to his arrival by his whistle in song.

The rich, whistling song of the Baltimore Oriole is a sweet herald of spring in eastern North America. Look way up to find these singers: the male’s brilliant orange plumage blazes from high branches like a torch. Nearby, you might spot the female weaving her remarkable hanging nest from slender fibers. Fond of fruit and nectar as well as insects, Baltimore Orioles are easily lured to backyard orange feeders.

  • Size & Shape

    Smaller and more slender than an American Robin, Baltimore Orioles are medium-sized, sturdy-bodied songbirds with thick necks and long legs. Look for their long, thick-based, pointed bills, a hallmark of the blackbird family they belong to.

  • Color Pattern

    Adult males are flame-orange and black, with a solid-black head and one white bar on their black wings. Females and immature males are yellow-orange on the breast, grayish on the head and back, with two bold white wing bars.

  • Behavior

    Baltimore Orioles are more often heard than seen as they feed high in trees, searching leaves and small branches for insects, flowers, and fruit. You may also spot them lower down, plucking fruit from vines and bushes or sipping from hummingbird feeders. Watch for the male’s slow, fluttering flights between tree tops and listen for their characteristic wink or chatter calls.

  • Habitat

    Look for Baltimore Orioles high in leafy deciduous trees, but not in deep forests: they’re found in open woodland, forest edge, orchards, and stands of trees along rivers, in parks, and in backyards.

Baltimore Oriole arriving in Murray

Baltimore Oriole 2

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This was taken last Sunday morning prior to a few hours of thunderstorms which yielded 0.61 inches of rain at my home on Murray Road looking towards Henderson Mountain to the East (sun behind a young White Oak tree). This is an HDR, taken with my Canon S95:

Red Dawn in Parthenon

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A Brown Trasher set up a territory in my front yard last Friday, in a large Sweet Gum Tree surrounded by low bushes of various varieties and native grasses. They are very sassy and can be aggressive; with new antics everyday.  Brown Thrashers are large, skulking bird of brushy thickets. The Brown Thrasher has one of the largest song repertoires of any North American bird. Boldly patterned, it is conspicuous when singing on its territory, but is hardly discernable during the rest of year.

Cool Facts

  • Brown Thrasher is considered a short-distance migrant.
  • An aggressive defender of its nest, the Brown Thrasher is known to strike people and dogs hard enough to draw blood.
  • Brown Thrashers leave the nest at only 9 to 13 days old, earlier than either of its smaller relatives, the Northern Mockingbird or Gray Catbird.

 

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This picture taken Friday by a Little Buffalo Crossing off Murray Road in Newton County Arkansas. Thus the the first of this species of warbler I have seen in 2012.

Prothonotary Warbler: Medium-sized warbler with olive-green back and blue-gray wings and tail. Head, neck, andunderparts are vibrant yellow and the undertail coverts are white. Bill, legs and feet are black. The only eastern warbler that nests in tree hollows. Once called the Golden Swamp Warbler. Prothonotary Warbler: Breeds mainly in the southeastern states north to Minnesota, Michigan, and New York. Spends wintersin the tropics. Preferred habitats include wooded swamps, flooded bottomland forests, and streams with dead trees.

 

Prothonotary Warbler along the Little Buffalo River in Arkansas

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Took this picture very early today  (Sun. April 15th) as the sun was attempting to break through the clouds and haze:

 

Sunday Morning

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