Somehow I managed to talk myself into getting up early both Saturday and Sunday this past weekend. Both days began on the cloudy side, with Saturday turning into rain by 10 a.m. But I finally saw some birds I had missed so far this season. Both Green Herons were at the Portage, for instance.
Last weekend the woodpeckers eluded me, but this time I had the Northern Flicker above, in addition to Red-Bellied Woodpeckers, Downies and a Hairy.
Some juvenile Robins are starting to forage on their own. And there were at least four Gray Catbirds on territories. Below is one of them.
This juvenile Red-Winged Blackbird sitting on one of the foot bridges was scolded furiously by her dad as I approached.
Wood Ducklings revealed…
Finally, the mirage I saw last weekend emerged. It was indeed a scurrying flotilla of Wood Ducklings. There are seven of them, and when they dart around en masse they look like a strange 7-headed creature.
Above, mama Wood Duck.
Again, the same silent Song Sparrow. Maybe it’s a she.
Still plenty of water on both sides of this path, when I caught the Snapping Turtle crossing.
And a beaver going about his business.
And Southwest Airlines flying over…
Sunday it was grassland birds at Plum Creek Forest Preserve, way down at the southern tip of Cook County, organized by Chicago Ornithological Society. The birds were often too far away to photograph, but we were surrounded by Dickcissels and Henslow’s Sparrows.
The Indigo Bunting below was interesting from the standpoint of his plumage. I don’t know if he was a juvenile or more likely somewhat leucistic, since his song sounded adult.
Always a delight to see a Great Crested Flycatcher.
And the only Henslow’s Sparrow of the seven or eight we heard who dared show himself was still buried in the grasses, for all practical purposes. Others ventured closer to him but I chose to hang back; Henslows nest on the ground, and I didn’t want to disturb anybody.
I leave you with a shrug from one of the Green Herons who had just about had enough of sitting still for so long.
I’ll try to shorten the space between posts. If I can stay awake long enough. 🙂