May 20, 2013
Well, it is officially over for another year! It seemed like forever to arrive, and then it went past in a heartbeat.
Oh well. now all I have to look forward to for the next 51 weeks is more birding and photography! Ha ha! Seriously, this is the most amazing hobby and I am so thankful that it found me!
Now about yesterday
Of course, nothing went as planned. The weather forecast was completely upside down, I didn’t dress for the cool temps or prepare for the inclement weather – and the birds were scarce. But you know what? – I still had a Great Time!!
I started the morning early, in the Traverse Woods. The sky was heavy and dull, and the usual cacophony of bird sounds was reduced to a few scattered calls. The threat of rain obliged me to leave my 400mm lens in the car. So I took my 60D with a 55-250mm lens in a holster bag, and slung a pair of binoculars around my neck. I didn’t know what to expect.
The good news? Well, the first bird I saw was my favourite warbler – the Common Yellowthroat, and right beside him was this beauty!
It’s a Magnolia Warbler – one of the most beautiful members of my favourite family of beautiful birds! Did I mention I love warblers!
(click on pictures to enlarge them, then use the ‘back’ button to return to the blog)
The most common warbler (maybe the most common bird) in the Traverse Woods each year at this time, is the Yellow-rumped Warbler. It is one of the first to arrive, it is one of the few that nests here, and it is one of the most beautiful. It is also one of the most cursed by birders who are attempting to find some of the more rare warblers. Sometimes it seems like every bird you spot is “another Yellow-rumped.”
As a result, most bird photographers (including me) do not give it its due. This year I swore I would try to get at least one good shot of this ubiquitous bird. I still don’t know if I gave it the attention it deserves, but here’s my best effort for 2013.
I didn’t see any rare birds yesterday, but I did add a Blackpoll Warbler to my list (that made 14 different warblers on the day) to bring my total for this year to 23.
My final encounter of the day (and the week) was this American Redstart. He was happily singing and hopping from branch to branch – generally in my direction, and he didn’t seem to mind the strange creature standing in the road with a metal and glass contraption stuck to its face. And so I was able to get this image.
Even on a bad day, seeing a Blackpoll Warbler, getting this shot of an American Redstart, and just generally enjoying all the natural beauty of Prince Edward Point made for a splendid end to a fabulous week of birding!