Click to make me much bigger!!!!
One bird I really wanted a photo of has been the Snowy Owl. On our birdwatching trip Saturday, we saw many ducks, Snow Geese, Canada Geese, Tundra Swans, and a couple of hawks, but the owl was the highlight of the cold, windy day.
The birdwatchers told me this was a female Snowy, being darker than males and having dusky spotting. They never become totally white either. They can find prey that is invisible under a thick blanket of snow. Below, is a Snowy Owl from September 2012 in the post, Helping Wildlife and Bettering the Habitat. Hypnotizing eyes, just thought you might want to see the eyes up close.
We saw some very pretty ducks in our travels, but the three duck images below I saw the day before. In fact I did much better on variety of ducks in my favorite duck locations on Grand Island where I could get a lot closer. I have some more coming up next post.
Male Long-tailed Duck
Hooded Merganser pair
I really enjoy these outings with the Buffalo Ornithological Society, and saw birds I had not seen before like the Snow Geese and a blue-morph Snow Goose. My friend and I were joking that we would sit here for 30 minutes and the goose will never wake up. And guess what? It never did.
We traveled quite a distance going from fields to the still frozen shores of Lake Ontario.
The ice with crashing waves captured my attention because many ducks were in these choppy waters, bobbing up and down.
Above would be a great, calm place for waterfowl, but it was frozen. Most of the waterfowl we saw were Canada Geese and gulls, far too many to count.
One of the gulls, one of thousands of gulls.
There were a number of ducks on the Lake, but most at a great distance, like the geese and swans below. Ducks have been having a hard time this winter too. See my post, Not Spring-like Yet – Ducks and the Ice, Oh My!
Tundra Swan, Snow Geese and Canada Geese in a farmer’s field. For a recap of other birds we saw:
- Greater White-Fronted Geese
- Great Blue Heron
- Cackling Goose
- Red-necked Grebes
- Horned Grebes
- Common Loon
- Northern Pintails
- a blue-morph Snow Goose
- Surf Scoter
- American Coot
- American Wigeon
- Eastern Meadowlark
- Screech Owl and I MISSED IT! It went back in its hole before everyone in the group got there to see it.
- Bald Eagle and I MISSED IT!
- In all the group saw 59 different species of birds.
Even though the day was rather cloudy and dreary, the views were still nice.
The Snowy you see in this post is one of three I saw this year. This one is here very late and I am sure building up fat reserves to make the long trip back to the tundra region of northern Canada and Alaska.
I’ve got my eye on you…
Thursday’s post, No Spring For You – Bird Spring Migration. Dangers of Migration. On Thursday, I am off to a prime birding spot east of here. I hope it is a nice day. Maybe an eagle will appear!!!