Sunday, May 26, 2013

To the creek we go

There's an irrigation creek near my house that I always visit in the summer. Today was the first time this season that I visited it! It wasn't too exciting. There are usually more birds towards the middle of the summer. But, I had a good time!

Of course the Red-winged Blackbirds were out in full force. They're a classic summer bird across North America. A few weeks ago, these guys were showing off their red epaulets and singing constantly to attract mates and establish territories. Now they've calmed down a bit. I bet they've got nests hidden in all those reeds. Maybe there will be baby blackbirds flapping around soon!

When the birding is slow, to the insects we go! This is a Mylitta Crescent, a butterfly found in western North America.

Song Sparrows sing all the time along this creek. I love it when I get good photos of these guys. From a distance, they look like your basic LBJ (little brown job). When you get close up, you see the lovely streaking on their chest and flanks. And this particular subspecies of Song Sparrow is streaked with a very pretty rust color!

This Red-tailed Hawk was circling over me and flaunting its stuff -- until a Red-winged Blackbird decided it had had enough. Those blackbirds can be quite annoying when they put their minds to it. Look at that poor hawk's face. It's begging someone to put it out of its misery.

It's good to look down every now and then, too! I found some bird tracks. I don't know my tracks at all, but I bet they were either Yellow-billed Magpies or Rock Pigeons. Both of those species waddle along this path looking for seeds.

Right after I took all these pictures, my camera gave up the ghost. It's been sputtering and threatening to die for about a year, and now it's finally dead. Gone. Kaput. I got a very nice surprise though... When I told my parents I might need a new camera, they whipped one out from nowhere! It turns out they had already bought one as a gift for my upcoming graduation. This was a chance to give it to me early! I'm pumped. This new camera is much more fancy than my previous one. I'll have to learn how to use it. I can't wait to see what it can do!