Sunday, June 23, 2013

Late Spring Regulars

The last week of Spring sees us settling into the Texas summer heat pattern, and fighting to keep the plants from wilting in the heat. The morning porch continues to be wonderful, and I enjoy camping there trying to catch a few good shots. Enjoy this week's offering.

 This juvenile Titmouse was hanging out at the office water dish, striking a pose.

When the juvies bathe, they make a mess!

This one doesn't quite have his black crest yet, but still standing proud.

One of my many Carolina Chickadees at the feeder just off the porch.

Have to laugh! No, it's not hurt. Just a young'un spreading out for warmth or drying. A juvenile Carolina Wren.

You might remember the Blue-gray Gnatcatcher that came around recently. Here is a juvenile, with a funny smile. Wonder what he knows!

The Cardinals fill my yard every day.

 The Great Blue Heron has been very elusive for quite a while. This morning, he was too intent on the hunt to bother with me.

He snatched up one of those giant crawdads our pond boasts.

 Another morning I caught this pose.

Looks happy to me!

 The Green Herons spend their time on the waters edge, looking for the minnows, frogs and crawdads. But sometimes, they fly into the nearby trees, and this day, he picked mine!

Then he took a stroll down the branch, checked out the action, and took off.

 Not sure what was going on with this hummingbird. It was a windy day.

 Seconds later everything looked normal; maybe it was a hummingbird morphing! Or maybe a combination bad hair day/indigestion!

At the house, Jan's zinnias are blooming, and the hummingbirds are interested.

 Shoot, they are even interested in the lantana!

Been workin' hard to catch me some Black-chin purple. This is my best offering for this round.

 Rare and uneasy truce at the feeder.

There's another waiting in the wings to disrupt this tense balance!

The female Painted Bunting joined the male House Finch at the office feeder.

The Buntings have been gracing us in the evenings at our feeder close to the porch.

Can't be too sure, but it looks like the Wesley's Bunting is back, or maybe an offspring. Last year we had a fellow with a yellow bib, and prominent ornithologist Lucy Sansom tagged him 'Wesley's Bunting'. (It is MY blog, so I CAN make this stuff up!)

We'll wrap this week up with the Bluebells I discovered on the other side of the pond while running the brush mower. They are glorious, YES!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Warmin' Up on the Porch

I am always surprised at the volume of pics I need to sort through! Just means I need to post more often, right? The summer temps are coming on, even though we are a few days away from true 'summer'. This makes the early mornings and dusk precious times for capturing my bird friends for the blog. Enjoy this week's offering.

 Just one offering this week of the Finch Wars at the office deck feeders. With the Pine Siskins gone to cooler climes, we have less contenders for the feeders. House Finch, incoming!

 I've been spending a little more time on capturing the hummingbirds.

 We have been so pleased with our new batch of morning glorys, and this guy seems to agree.

 The Black-chinned Hummingbird is trying to show he can match the morning glory anytime!

Just catchin' a little of that purple.

 This glorious morning the flowers and the hummers were entertaining us.

And on this day, I had three at that feeder at once. Rare.

 The Green Heron was fishing on the pond edge, and ventured out. Something I hadn't seen him do before.

 I knew he had caught a big something, just not sure what.

Oh yes! He actually swallowed that whole Texas-sized crawdad in one gulp!

The Green Heron having a close encounter with a Red-ear Turtle.

The hit-and-run Titmouse, Texas race!

And back at the house, the Titmouse's ever-present friend, the Carolina Chickadee.

An agile bird.

Round two of the Phoebes at the back porch, three in this brood.

Mom and Dad are faithfully in the yard catching bugs for the babies.

And at the office, round two, with three heads identified. They have all launched, with no apparent casualties.

Isn't this fun? At the make-shift water feature in my yard, the frog family is enormous.

The Yellow-crowned Night Heron family continues to hang out at the pond. They are also adept at catching the giant Texas crawdads.

 My favorite song-bird, the Bewick's Wren. This one was visiting the office deck bath.

 This pair was chasing around my yard, and hunting for something out on the new granite pathway. I hope it was worth it to stick his beak in that gravel! The young male Cardinal was just an innocent bystander.

 This Bewick's Wren was flitting around the Banks rose.

And stopped by the chapel to practice his solo for Sunday.

 Papa Cardinal ready for his Father's Day duties.

 Feeding the kids! What a dad!

We are thankful today for our faithful Dads, who kept feeding us and taking care of us even when they didn't feel like it.
Happy Father's Day!