Saturday, January 4, 2014

Soggy Saturday

This morning I had the pleasure of cruising the causeway and finding a nice assortments of loons, mergansers, hooded grebes and a great black-backed gull. I was pleased and ready to proceed to join the San-Cap Audubon group for their weekly Saturday walks which officially began today. Even though this day was dampish, overcast and feeling down right chilly - a group of almost 30 people showed up. The birds didn't seem to mind the weather and were present in nice numbers.
Saw a lady Osprey who seemed to be comfortable on her be the judge.
When I first started birding - I recall the tip for identifying the female Osprey - look at the top of her chest and how the feathers are 'pearly'....she is wearing a necklace. This tip stayed with me and it does makes it easy for me to identify...."Thank You Sue Harpham for your helpful tips."

As we proceeded down the Airplane Canal at the Bailey Tract, we saw a few Anhingas. This one is still sporting some of his juvenile plumes on his head. He is a male - the telltale signs is that he is all black, as opposed to the female Anhinga who has a tawny head, neck and breast making it look as if she's wearing a strapless black dress....another cute tip from Sue.

The size of this bird is amazing - from head to tip of tail it measures 35" long and the wing span measures 45" across.

The Anhinga is also nicknamed the Snake Bird because of the way it swims. They are also very interesting to watch..... after they have speared their fish for a meal, they come up and flip the fish in the air and catch it head first...never missing their target.

After a couple hours, the rain started and the air felt chillier....I wrapped it up and headed home for some hot coffee and food. The weather has kept me home for the rest of the day....tomorrow is another day and I hope to be able to find a couple species that I've been looking for.

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