Screech Owl, Screaming Baby Heads, Parula, & Other Stuff (6/23/19)

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zackiedawg Forum Pro • Posts: 31,371
Screech Owl, Screaming Baby Heads, Parula, & Other Stuff (6/23/19)

Picking up with the wildlife and birding posts again, right where the last one left off, this post starts off on March 30th and carries through April 6th, out in the local two wetlands of Green Cay and Wakodahatchee.  Lots of birds this time, but a mix of random ones, and a few lesser seen ones at least down here.

All taken with the A6300 and FE100-400mm GM combo, and all shots posted at 1400 pixels on the long side if you click on the originals:

Let's start with a glossy ibis having himself a bath - lots of furious splashing of the wings in the water spraying everywhere

A trio of black-bellied whistling ducks flying together past the low island trees

A great blue heron flying past a cloudy sky

This one is doing just the opposite - standing in the water rather than flying, as he watches the water's surface for fish below

It's always a nice treat to catch the small migrating birds passing through the forest regions on their way north - the window can be as small as 2 weeks to catch birds like this lovely northern parula, who has caught a caterpillar larvae for lunch

Pretty much all they do is feed, as they mostly have just come from the Caribbean or South America and stop here to rest and feed before making the rest of the flight north to the upper U.S. and Canada

This green heron isn't going anywhere - so he's just feeding to eat and stay healthy - this one had just caught a nice sized fish with his spear-like beak - and was sticking up the head feathers to show off

He then moved into a nice open patch of mud where the fish couldn't escape and wriggle back into the water, and without even waiting for the fish to stop moving and struggling, down it went like Jonah in the belly of the whale.  I wonder how long the fish stays alive in there?

Got another glimpse and shot of an ever-elusive sora, who popped briefly out of the reeds pecking at food before scurrying back in to the cover

Last week I showed you two shots of a mom red-winged blackbird sitting on her nest very close to the trail, but well hidden deep in the reeds.  Well, a few weeks later, here is the result - she was out foraging for food and had briefly left the nest and I threaded the focus through to find two newly hatched screaming heads wanting food

Deep in the pine scrub forest, the sneaky screech owls had nested again - I got a few shots of a very well hidden male in past posts, but this time I was lucky to catch the female sticking her head out of her palm tree trunk hole for a brief look around

Both the male on guard and the nest hole were very difficult to photograph this year, well hidden in dense branches and tree cover - I shifted to another angle to get more of a side view profile of her peeking out of the hole, shooting almost directly into the sun yet still in low light

The beautiful and active black-and-white warbler, making one of the last appearances for spring before moving off to parts north - they should be back again come late fall...but this one gave a nice close visit with some diffuse backlight coming through the leaves

This is not a great shot technically, but I found it interesting - I was lining up a shot on the pretty little female painted bunting in the flower beds, when the big ominous devil-red beast flew into the shot ready to attack.  Of course, the best is just a northern cardinal - you wouldn't think of them as large birds, until you see them next to the diminutive painted bunting female!

And one non-bird photo as the parting shot for this thread - a brown basilisk lizard (Jesus lizard) peeking around a tree branch at me

Comments, questions, and critique encouraged and welcomed as always!

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