This morning was beautifully sunny and clear, although a brisk north wind kept things rather chilly most of the morning. I started out kind of late, around 9:00 a.m., and went to the Chicago Portage to see if anything had changed.
There were more Tree Swallows than a couple weeks ago, perhaps a dozen or so. But there were no new birds. I had hoped to see at least a Yellow-Rumped Warbler, and maybe a few different sparrows. Maybe the wind was blowing from the wrong direction to bring in new migrants. I managed to get a few nice photos of the current residents anyway.
A couple Canada Geese got into a disagreement which caused the water to fly.
A Northern Cardinal was singing to the right of the path.
I heard Song Sparrows singing and finally found one.
And of course there were a lot of robins.
Around midday it was much warmer but the wind picked up. I went to McGinnis Slough to see some different birds. There were several species shared between the two locations such as Red-Winged Blackbirds, Black-Capped Chickadees, American Robins, Tree Swallows, House Finches and Mallards. Generally McGinnis has more water birds, although for the most part they are hard to photograph because they are usually too far away.
On the other hand, this Red-Winged Blackbird was more cooperative than the ones at the Portage.
I got lucky with this Great Blue Heron, one of seven I saw fishing in various shallows.
There were perhaps 250-275 American Coots. This one was swimming around with something wrapped around its body. Looks like a water plant pulled up from a dive.
There were 20 or more Pied-Billed Grebes but they were too far away to photograph. As it is this Horned Grebe eating a fish it had caught is barely recognizable.
This might be the year I figure out digiscoping. Or not. There will always be birds too far away.