One more post from Sunday’s trip to the Circle B Bar Reserve…
There’s a new family of Sandhill Cranes out on Wading Bird Way. The adults had the colts out on a “vegetation island” while I was there. From the pictures posted on Flickr, it looks like they later brought the babies up onto the trail. The babies are still tiny and in their “super-cute” phase. Who can resist a tiny orange fuzzball?
On a related note, I saw several adult Purple Gallinules along Wading Bird Way, and I’m almost positive that I heard babies. :)
There were tons of ibises flying around. This Glossy Ibis flew right in front of me. He’s in his breeding plumage – look at the blue on his face.
The “great white party” continued for a good hour after sunrise, with storks and herons and egrets flapping around as they searched for breakfast in the shallow water. This Snowy Egret did a little dance for me. He seemed to drag his feet in the water as he flew along. Sometimes he would kinda fly with his face down in the water, too. He looked pretty funny.
There were tons of grackles along the trail, almost all with recently-fledged young. They made as much noise as all the big birds combined! I saw lots of mamas fly in with worms and insects for their babies. I bet they will be glad when those fussy little guys can feed themselves.
I saw several sets of Black-Necked Stilts fly over. I got to the point where I could hear them before I could spot them, and that gave me a little bit of an advantage to photographing them. As I left, one flew and landed close to the trail, near where the Redhead duck posed so nicely this winter. It’s mostly a mud flat now. Watching the bird poke around in the mud gave me a new appreciation for his long legs. He needs them because the mud is so deep! He seemed to sink deeper and deeper without even noticing.
I almost don’t have the heart to post this last one…I finally saw one of the Northern Bobwhites that calls from the Eagle Roost trail. Dyeyo and I have spent long periods watching for these birds, and calling them, and trying to find them. It figures that I finally saw one on a day when he wasn’t there! But I did get a video…and it’s a good incentive to go back! :)