Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Good Things Come, While Sitting on a Deck

Sunday was a great Minnesota day for being outside. The weather was cool enough to kick a soccer ball or play catch with the kids. A bit later it was just fine for sitting in the shade with my DSLR close at hand, enjoying the company of family and feathered friends.

Least, (in stature) but not last, was this Eastern Phoebe. It found an opening in the mature pines and perched as I caught a few frames. I didn't get to confirm this little guy while on site, but based on the coloring and lack of either eyering or wingbars I believe the ID fits.

Later, while my folks had joined me outside I saw a hawk cross just through my field of view on the edge of a lazy circle. I sprang to my feet and hurried across the deck focusing and shooting as I went. It circled over the roofline, but I had a feeling I would get another look as it returned. I stood atop a table bench as it came and was able to get a few frames including the shot above. Then the decades old redwood crashed! I rode the bench down, (thanks snowboarding), and found myself eighteen inches lower and no worse for the wear. We all had a good laugh about the lesson I had provided the five year old and two year old about standing on furniture. I then quickly went inside to confirm a Krider's Red-tailed Hawk. I had wondered initially about a Broad-Winged Hawk, but with a chance to observe zoomed in views on my photos I confirmed the faint patagial bars (invisible in the sun) and the white terminal band (black on a Broad-Wing).

Finally, as I waited outside before we all shared an early, pre-departure dinner, I saw a beautiful splash of color and motion explode uphill near the birdbath! It was a young Cardinal, possibly the same one from yesterday's post, attempting to figure out the birdbath. With the overhead sunlight and soft reds and oranges it could have been a Phoenix. I watched through several visits where he never landed, just gave his best hummingbird impression and was back to the bushes beyond.

2009 Count: 173
Lifetime: 183

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