Friday after I got my son from school we went to check out a pond we got atip on for big bluegills, not to fish it, just to check it out. On the way we drove by another pond that trumpater swans and ducks stop at migrating trough teh area. I took a bunch of pics here a a few. I thought a few others in here might enjoy seeing them. Now keep in mind these are wild birds not tame birds at some ones farm lol. We seen many species but the ones in the pics are swans, ring-neck ducks, mallards, and one bufflehead.
I find myself birding regularly while fishing. Been known to miss a strike or two trying to watch a kingfisher or protonotary warbler skittering around the river. Fishing is SO much more than catching fish. It's just nice being out there with all of it.
It's amazing the stuff that shows up around here. Along the barrier beaches in the fall, we get a lot of birds from the north- eider ducks, old squaw, and usually snowy owls that winter over. A lot of times you can spot snowy owls standing on top of dunes--- apparently since they're usually found above tree line, they haven't figured out they'd make a better perch (???).
In the fall we also get the arrival of gannets, which dive bomb schools of herring. And there is a big push of falcons and hawks along the barrier beaches from Aug to Oct, with the bigger birds showing up last. When they migrate they like to have land beneath them, so the best places to find them are at choke points where the beaches are narrow (ocean on one side, bay on the other. At some places guys and gals set up a "hawk watch" and count them as they hurtle past, sitting on lawn chairs with binocs. For years they've been putting up a great horned owl decoy on a pole, about 8 feet off the ground. The eyes of the decoy have been pretty well gouged out now--- as falcons are bee lining down the beach, they swerve over and nail it as they pass by. It's incredible.
One of my favorite places to bird around here is actually in the city limits of NYC in Queens-- Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge . You can actually see the city sky line, but are surrounded by an incredible diversity of birds as they pass through on spring and fall migrations. Everything from glossy ibis, oyster catchers, and other shorebirds, huge rafts of waterfowl (buffs, scaup, ruddy ducks, shovelers, etc etc) and brant and snow geese that over winter, marsh hawks, nesting ospreys and stuff like warblers that pass through in spring.
Neat stuff. And along the beach in years past I've seen sea turtles, pods of killer whales and a 60 foot right whale with calf. There was even a young beluga whale that appeared every spring for several years and seemed to be trying to romance a bell buoy at Fire Island Inlet. Fisherman would feed it flounder they caught.
Bear, it's great that you're sharing all this with your son. In addition to having a great fishing buddy, it sounds like you're also passing along a deep respect and reverence for nature. it's funny to me how kids today can get so caught up in video games and watching the boob tube, but give them a chance--- or the opportunity-- to slide around in the mud of a swamp catching tadpoles, or get 'em outside for a bit, and they'll never look back. you're a great dad!
Thanks guys I'm glad ya all liked it. I like them king fishers Sep. on of my fav's, as a matter of fact I about got one tattod on my chest holding a fishing pole in one foot, but anyway.
Sounds like you got a great place to bird as well as fish peregrins. And thanks for the dad comment, I sure try, would hate to have him get rapped up in drugs or something. I agree to many kids get into TV and video games way to much anymore. Whats sade is you see so mnay folks any more that take advantage of mother nature in fishing and hunting, but do not respect it and couldnt tell you a damn thing about it, all they care about is catching that fish or killing that deer or whatever and alot dont care how they do it or what footprint they leave on the land and nature. I'll get off my soapbox now LOL
I am happy you all liked the pics
Two years ago while fishing the Mouth of the Platte River on Lake Michigan was fishing for smallies. Had been watching this bird in the area. I saw him dive under water about 20 feet from where I was fishing, just a few seconds before I hooked a smallie, or so I thought Until he came splashing up out of the water. Reeled him in, unhooked him, and released him unharmed....but confused.
Now theres something ya dont see everyday, glad ya got him in and un-hooked with out hurtig him, good job. This time if year we watch for seagulls diveig for shad ( where ther are shad, stripers are usally under ' em) I am always wondering if we'll ever catch one of those birds, guess now I know it could happen, not that I want to.
I always carry a pair of 10X25 mini,s along and birding is a big part of the trips. I am still busy finding new birds because I wasn't born here I don't know them all but I keep a Life List.
Do you do that? It's a list of every living thing (species not numbers) that you see and identify. Not too hard to do, every trip if I see something new I add it to the list when I get home. Life List it's a good thing.
Ard, I went to MWSU for wildlife Biology and kinda went towards ornothlogy. I took a couple Orno. classes and bird ID class, most of the others in that class ended up relying on me for ID help and cheating off my test haha. Anyway I keep a trip list, if thats what I am doing that day, I keep a year list, a yard list and I have an Audubon life list journal that I started mnay years ago, and my wife bought me a National Geographic Birders Journal to start an Arkansas life list since we moved here. You could say I am kinda into the birds lol.
I'm the guy that dosent take a shot at a mallard duck hunting cause I am watching a marsh wren or an american avocet, the guy that didnt even see that brown take my dry becuase I was watching a black and white warbler or kingfisher .
This may sound kinda corny, but I'm the guy that could build a cabin in the woods some place live off the land, have NO TV, but watch nature instead and be happy as a bug in the rug.
I am a bird watcher, rock hound, fisherman and hunter.
Anyway thats my view for what its worth lol
I am gonna say it's one of two things, 1: A. Goldfinch with some mellonistic problems going on or 2: some ones pet exotic thats got out of tweetys cage lol good pick by the way.
after I fix them I took a few pics or a chipmonk eating blackoil sunflower seeds under one of my feeders yeatsrday