Friday, July 31, 2009

baby Chipping Sparrow

Blue Cloud Abbey is known for its Chipping Sparrow population. In my next post I will give you my rationale for concluding that this is one of their babies.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

flying Eastern Kingbird

This is my favorite shot of an Eastern Kingbird from my last trip to Blue Cloud Abbey. They would tease me by waiting on a telephone wire or fence post until I pulled up, got my camera ready, only to fly off to the next post 1/2 second before I squeezed the shutter. This bird was particularly persistent in annoying me; however, I was able to match its speed and follow it at about 20 mph limiting its opportunity to land. After about a couple of dozen shots that were totally useless, I came up with the above. I suspect that this Kingbird decided to be nice to me & give me a break.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Eastern Kingbirds

There are a lot of Eastern Kingbirds around Blue Cloud Abbey.
I couldn't decide which one of these I preferred -- so I'm posting both.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Purple Martins at Blue Cloud Abbey

"Get back to work! You have some hungry babies there."

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Friday, July 24, 2009

Mud Lake near Wheaton, MN

From the bill, it looks like this one is still working on the nest.

Cliff Swallows

Double-crested Cormorant

Great Blue Heron in lots of Algae

Thursday, July 23, 2009

and then the sun came out

Double-crested Cormorants at Big Stone Lake

Are they migrating already?
I've never seen so many in one place as I did at Big Stone Lake last week. They were coming in flocks of 50 or more -- flock after flock.

Kirtland's Warblers

Kirtland's Warblers in Adams Co., WI, fledged 23-27 young from 6-7 nests in 2009, far more than in 2008.
Thanks Chuck Hagner !

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Monday, July 20, 2009

Swallow fledglings awaiting their turn

It's good to be back from my trip to Blue Cloud Abbey. My first stop was at the Big Stone NWR. The auto tour route is still closed with anticipated reopening sometime in August. The above photo was taking just northwest of the dam on Hwy. 75.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Mud Lake dam near Wheaton, MN

The high winds yesterday resulted in the sighting of only one Pelican and one DC Cormorant. The Swallows were feeding their young in the nests under the bridge. Photos will have to await posting until after my return home. This morning the wind has subsided and I'm hoping for better luck in picture taking.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Big Stone NWR

Despite rain & strong winds this morning, I decided to check out the
Big Stone NWR just outside of Ortonville, MN and was disappointed to
find the Auto Tour road still closed. But, the sun is slowly coming
out and I'll be looking at other locations later.
Does anyone know when DC Cormorants begin migrating? I saw flock after
flock of them coming in on the Lake. The total must have been well
over one hundred. I'll be posting some pix when I return next week.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

the rest of the week

Early tomorrow morning I will be leaving for a week at Blue Cloud Abbey near Marvin, S.D. I will be visiting various refuges in South Dakota as well as Minnesota.
Although I do not have a laptop computer I will attempt to write some posts on my iPhone and also post on Twitter.

more Orioles


Saturday, July 11, 2009

I got Orioles!

After several unsuccessful years of trying, I finally got some Baltimore Orioles at the feeder. They do like grape jelly.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Thursday, July 9, 2009


Blue Cloud Abbey sunset

This photo was taken with my iPhone less than 1 mile from Blue Cloud Abbey.
This concludes the pictures from my last visit to Blue Cloud.
However, I will be returning next week!

Monday, July 6, 2009

a road near Blue Cloud Abbey at sunset

. . . compressed by a telephoto lens.

Sunday, July 5, 2009


Yellow-headed Blackbirds don't care to have Red-winged Blackbirds in their territory.

shortsighted & disgusting

Michigan's farmers legally killed 268 Sandhill Cranes in 2008.
link (thanks Birdchick)

Friday, July 3, 2009

Wilson's Snipe near Blue Cloud Abbey, SD


I just downloaded iBird for my iPhone after reading a number of reviews this morning. I chose the iBird Plus for $10 less, rather than the PRO version; I did not see where I would be using the few extra features of PRO. After browsing iBird Plus, I am impressed. I usually do not carry a field guide with me since I'm more interested in taking photos than placing check marks on a list; however, I'm certain that having iBird on my iPhone will come in handy. If you have used the program already, let me know what you think.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

the REAL wordless Wednesday

I messed up yesterday when I posted the turkey photos.
I thought it was Wednesday -- it wasn't. It was late Tuesday.
To make up for it, here's one of my favorite birds, the Yellow-headed Blackbird.