Featured Post

Monday, March 16, 2015

Passel of Pretties

Savannah Sparrow
Ah Spring! Well, ah, well, in just a few days anyway. I took a spin over to my favorite spots to bird and gawk at wildflowers in the vicinity of the Jackson Highway. It is a little short of two weeks since my last foray to the area and what a difference.  The last time I posted I carried on about the Blue Dicks, aka Cluster Lilies.
Painted Lady Butterfly escaping with some Cluster Lily (Blue Dick) pollen
A week or two after the Blue Dicks pop up and test the territory, next to show their faces to the sun are the Ithuriel's Spears aka Wally-Baskets.

Ithuriel's Spears aka Wally-Baskets
Ithuriel's Spears is a fine & honorable name, but I get a giggle out of it's other name, Wally-baskets. In British slang, a 'Wally' is an idiot. So these flowers are Idiot or Jerk Baskets. HAHAHAHAA! OK. Perhaps you had to be there, but it's plenty funny to me.

I found some Spoke Pods, which aren't exactly wildflowers, but they come up in the spring and sometimes they are pinkish. This batch I found are more whitish & rather like tiny flat flying saucers. 

Spoke Pods
Many hills are tinted with wildflowers now
This pasture is pale yellow from 'Butter and Eggs'
Butter and Eggs a bit closer
Tidy Tips are one of my favorites
There were plenty of birds around. I was pleased to find a puddle with no less than four species putting it to use: a pair of Mallards, a couple of Killdeers and one Greater Yellowlegs. The yellowlegs, like the killdeer, is a shorebird that is often far off from the usual shorebird habitat.

Left to right...A pair of Mallards, a Killdeer (back to camera), 
then a nice grayish Greater Yellowlegs and a 2nd Killdeer
But the birdies of the day I saw when I noticed an owl sized clump of dirt under a berm. I looked carefully at the lump and sure enough was not one, but two Burrowing Owls, enjoying their 'porch' just outside their burrow. One was shy and ducked back into the burrow when I pointed my binoculars at them. The other just kept his or her beady amber eyes on me... you never know what those sneaky humans are up to.
That Burrowing Owl kept its disapproving yellow eyes on me

Of course I didn't stay more than a couple of minutes. I sure hope they have a nestful of eggs down in that tunnel.

Not quite as rare, but surely just as fun were a couple of Wild Turkey Toms, that were not the least bit tame. As soon as they spotted me, they took off running.

Dang... did you see how BIG that human was? We could'da been a snack.
Common Goldeneyes who were also un-thrilled with my presence
My first Wood Ducks for the year. Hurrah!

1 comment:

  1. Would sure like to see a Wild Turkey in flight.

    Wink, wink, hint, hint.