Saturday, May 30, 2015

Up in the trees

This time of the year it starts to get hot, most of the birds have gone north with the snow birds - but don't let that fool you ..... there is much to be mesmerized by if you take the time to notice.
At 6mile Cypress Slough - a young Red-shouldered Hawk patiently waiting for the parent to return with some juicy morsel.

A male Northern Flicker - Yellow-shafted, quite noticeable from this angle. My books state that they feed on the ground yet I've never seen them other than up high in the trees.

A Male Northern Flicker - you can tell it's a male by the black line off the base of the bill, the female does not have one.

Not too far away a family of Swallow-tailed Kites was seen and heard.

They feed while flying, large insects, lizards, and even small birds are their main food staple.

They like to nest in the tallest trees.

They make a platform nest of sticks, twigs and pine needles - often lined with spanish moss. 2 to 4 eggs are incubated for 28 days, the young will fledge at 36-42 days.

They arrive in the spring and stay through the summer, they depart in the early fall and spend their winter in the tropics. It is quite a beautiful sight to watch them swooping and gliding gracefully while floating into space.

The sweet closure on that day was seeing this Bluebird, not a bad way to end the day.

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