Wish Fulfillment

RTHU 08-19-17-2963I’ve had hummingbird feeders up since May. Three feeders in the backyard, and a couple weeks ago after a hummingbird hovered in my front yard, I added another feeder for the front porch. The best feeder for me is the one I can see while I’m standing at the kitchen sink looking out the window to the branch of the sumac tree it’s hanging from. And Saturday early evening my eye immediately followed that quick, darting flight of a hummingbird to that exact feeder. I grabbed the camera, went out the back door and waited. The hummingbird, a female Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, to be exact, decided she’d rather be at another feeder that hangs from the redbud tree, so that’s where I got these few pictures. But at last my wish was granted and hanging the feeders was no longer in vain.

I didn’t see a hummer on Sunday, but last night after work I did see a hummer come to the farthest feeder hanging from the crabapple tree.

Also in the yard late Saturday was a female Downy Woodpecker and a female cat that I often catch lounging on my back cement slab where once a tiny garage stood, but it seems she now has a new observation deck across the fence by the neighbor’s garage. She closed her eyes for the camera.

After all this excitement I figured my chances might be good for finding a hummingbird at the Portage Sunday morning. so I got there a little earlier than I have been (when I pulled in, there were no cars in the parking lot) and sure enough, right around the first bridge over the duckweed, I found this lovely individual.

RTHU 08-20-17-3018

Female Ruby-Throated Hummingbird

I should mention that I mustered up the courage to take the Tamron 100-600mm lens now that I’ve enabled the back button focus feature, so I was able to get more pictures from farther away after being frustrated by the distances last week. Below, a couple Indigo Buntings.

And juvenile American Robins in their ever-changing plumage are always interesting to see.

There seemed to be a lot of juvenile Blue-Gray Gnatcatchers too. I think I caught this one after a bath.

It wasn’t too difficult to find an obliging Cedar Waxwing. This one is enjoying Pokeweed berries and a staring match with the camera lens.

CEWA 08-20-17-3189I didn’t get great pictures of any individual American Goldfinches but they stand out against the duckweed palette below.

AMGO 08-20-17-3044Below, one very distant Tiger Swallowtail butterfly and another Indigo Bunting.

When I stopped by the second bridge, I heard a White-Breasted Nuthatch but saw this Black-and-White Warbler foraging like a nuthatch on a tree.

BWWA 08-20-17-3264I lost track of the warbler but then found the nuthatch, below.

I still had a little time so I decided to see if anything was up at McGinnis Slough.

McGinnis 08-20-17-3357There was not a lot of activity. The large numbers of swallows and swifts were gone and nothing else had noticeably replaced their activity. But I did get a couple interesting photographs of three of the same species I had at the Portage.

INBU 08-20-17-3314

Indigo Bunting

BGGN 08-20-17-3347

Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher

CEWA 08-20-17-3253

Cedar Waxwing

One more bird from the Portage…

SOSP 08-20-17-3111

Juvenile Song Sparrow

I have decided seeing hummingbirds at my feeders is appropriate consolation for not being able to view the partial solar eclipse yesterday. The safety glasses I ordered over a week ago never arrived, and I never received a reply to any of my email inquiries, so now I am digging in for a refund. Even if the glasses do finally arrive, I can’t plan to be around for the next eclipse, which is in 2024 and I’d have to travel to see it, let alone find the glasses 7 years from now. I did receive a camera filter in time for yesterday, maybe I can find another reason to play with it.

19 thoughts on “Wish Fulfillment

  1. Lisa,
    Two of our daughters, two grand children, a friend and her daughter traveled to just North of Carbondale. It was a wonderful experience. Not only the full eclipse but the children’s reaction. To witness all that was beyond what I expected.

    • Oh that’s wonderful, Jim! It sounds like you did it right. I’m not feeling too bad about missing the partial partial eclipse in that it was cloudy on top of being not in the totality. If I am tempted next time I’ll get the glasses a lot farther ahead.

      • Really? I’m sorry to hear that. I’ve been to Queensland once to see birds, never made it to New Zealand, but even if your birds blend in they still must be unique and somewhat colorful. Now you’ve got me curious. I see you have Little Blue Penguins, now really, those are colorful! 🙂

      • Yeah, don’t get me wrong, I do actually love our birds but they don’t sport a lot of colour. You’re right about them being unique, very much so. But for my colour fix I go to other places blogs like your blog! I go to Aussie, America, or S.Africa and I’m sure there’s lots more I’ll come across 🙂

      • Well it’s true the grass is always greener. And I do understand where you’re coming from. So I’m going back to Ecuador in November where I always hope to see a lot of tanagers. The Galapagos was full of drab birds, I suppose. Darwin’s finches are not glamorous looking. But they were fascinating to me anyway. Most disappointing for me, I suppose, was the fact that they had hardly any vocalizations. I guess that’s an adaptation too. Who needs to sing in the Galapagos? What for? 🙂

      • Wow! You’ve been to The Galapagos! How wonderful. Hopefully you’ll blog your adventures in Ecuador which I’ll look forward to with much anticipation!

      • I never quite finished posting about the Galapagos. I definitely intend to blog about my next trip. Thanks for your enthusiasm!

  2. Congrats on the hummingbirds! I never had luck with a feeder but now seem to get a few each year when there are flowers to their liking. They sure do argue though!
    the bathing gnatcatcher is my favorite this week. I love what a mess she is!

    • Thanks, Frank. You are very lucky to get hummers on a regular basis with your plants which of course is optimal. Glad you like the wet gnatcatcher. I had several more shots of her trying to preen her wet feathers and getting frustrated! 🙂

    • Thanks, Jason! I got lucky with the waxwings, the light was great. Should remind me, the lazy photographer misses the best shots. Why does that remind me of “the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog?”

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