Coming To Your Emotional Rescue

Welcome back to check mark January! As a recap, this month has brought with us 9 new birds and an additional sub-species. Haven’t been this productive at the beginning of the year since I ran Project Chekov back in January 2014. 26 consecutive bird posts featuring at least one bird named with that day’s consecutive letter (link here). Now that was a chore, figuring out at least one bird for each letter and then hunting pictures down. The letter Q was quite the challenge and had to bend the rules just a bit to cover the letter U (thank god for zoos on that one). Not going to make it to 26 this month, but I can get us to 10!

White-Tailed Kite Shot at Galveston Texas State Park in December 2016

Having just recently featured another bird of prey, thought it was fitting to bring you an additional cool feathered killer. This sinister looking bird is a White-Tailed Kite. Some birds shots are obtained by canvasing particular areas in hopes of spotting something interesting from the vehicle (some like my brother Ron would consider this the absolutely best method for winter birding). Other finds come from getting your shoes dirty, braving briar and defending against the mosquito horde just to get a glimpse of a rare lost bird. Both methods produce the same check in the book, but clearly one has a better experience than the other aka – blogger gold hehehe. Interesting enough, this sighting didn’t bring with it that much effort.

White-Tailed Kite Shot at Galveston Texas State Park in December 2016

Hit the jump to learn more about this Kite!

Continue reading Coming To Your Emotional Rescue

My Crested Style Fu is Superior to Your Pelikido

It appears I finally broke my consecutive post streak.  Was on a roll thanks to outside forces driving me to get through as much of the Texas related birding encounters as possible.  Deadline is still there, I just had the opportunity to enjoy a guilty pleasure this weekend – I happen to be part of a top ranking fake group on Rock Band and we were able to get the band together Friday.  It has been awhile and we were all a bit rusty.  We had a great time even though my arms are now sore from the night of drumming – I may have to start warming up before we play now eesh.  Before you laugh at me too much, we have put our computer engineering skills to good use – our singer has modified a real mic and I have a full electronic Roland drum set that feeds through an Ion head to a midi converter to now an Xbox-360 to Xbox-One pigtail converter and then to the console.  Thinking that still isn’t helping my case any ha!   Reality of it all is I am now trying to get back in the posting saddle.  Thanks to having to do this while traveling on the road, thought I would go with a post that doesn’t need a lot of research – had to leave my reference books at home.

Today’s featured post comes to you courtesy of Seawolf Park near Galveston Texas.  We were visiting that location for the first time back in January 2017 which produced a number of intriguing experiences.  While hunting for dolphins from their wharf, I spotted a Double-Crested Cormorant looking tauntingly at a nearby Brown Pelican.  Screw the dolphins, this might turn out quite interesting.

Double-Crested Cormorant and Brown Pelican tangle at Seawolf Park in Galveston Texas January 2017

Slowly their paths converged.  An entire gulf of water to explore, yet each one refusing to yield their path to the other.   Hubris had once again taken root in its victims giving false confidence to its host.  So there it stood, the formidable Crested-Fu style of the Cormorant paired off against the more physically dominating Pelikido of the larger bodied Brown Pelican.  Surely cooler heads wood prevail – maybe a respectful bow and mutual diversion of their conflicting trajectories.


Double-Crested Cormorant and Brown Pelican tangle at Seawolf Park in Galveston Texas January 2017

Hit the jump to see how this angry bird encounter turns out!

Continue reading My Crested Style Fu is Superior to Your Pelikido

Cyrano de Water

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas  We lucked out here in the Midwest and managed to pull off a white Christmas thanks to around 4 inches of snow on Christmas Eve.  I think it just makes it a little more special when you can open your presents surrounded by a fresh batch of the fluffy stuff.  What I wasn’t ready for was the deep freeze that followed immediately after.  We really didn’t have a Fall so my body hasn’t really conditioned to cold.  From the looks of it, this polar vortex is going to be hanging around for a while.  Lucky for me I can always recall (and share) memories of warmer times.

American Avocet shot at Henderson Bird Viewing Preserve, Henderson NV, August 2013

Today’s post features another +1 in my North American Birding List.  They also come from two locations that are both definitely warmer than what we are experiencing now.  The first set of pictures came from a trip back in August 2013 to Las Vegas, Nevada.  If you have been following this blog for any length of time, you probably read Las Vegas and immediately thought Henderson Bird Viewing Preserve.  if you are new to the blog, that preserve is a gold mine for birders.  I should sum up all the +1’s I’ve pulled out of that location – guessing it is somewhere in the 30’s if not the 40’s.

American Avocet shot at Henderson Bird Viewing Preserve, Henderson NV, August 2013

Hit the jump to see a few more shots of the American Avocet

Continue reading Cyrano de Water