Friday, February 3, 2012

Some Power Birding

I snuck in a quick bit of birding this evening after work. I have been trying to relocate a Common Yellowthroat I saw a while back (a current photographic nemesis) at the Tres Rios preserve in south-central Phoenix. While I was again unsuccessful in that regard, it was a nice walk around with plenty of other fun and common birds.

This Great Blue Heron was hanging out on the water's edge in those nasty red vine things. I don't know what they are, and I'm sure they're a biologically impressive species, but they remind me of the vein-like things that the aliens use to digest the earth in War of the Worlds. The Heron was cool though; he didn't seem to mind. By the way, should we call a female Great Blue a Heroine?

I've been trying to improve my in-flight photography (when the bird is in flight, not myself). Slowly but surely I'm learning things about better settings and when/how to anticipate take-offs. It's a good challenge, and the big lumbering herons make pretty easy subjects for beginners such as myself.

I still haven't glimpsed that ruby crown, but otherwise the Kinglets have been great this year. They're hanging out around Phoenix in large numbers and with very little shyness. Now, taking their picture without obstructing twigs is another matter entirely.

The Verdin is one of the signature species of the arid southwest. Like the Kinglets, they're pretty personable and pretty good-looking. I'm been having warbler envy this winter, but the Kinglets and Verdins and Yellow-Rumps are doing their industrious best to keep me satisfied. Thanks guys.  


  1. Wonderful series of photographs! Great in-flight capture of the beautiful heron. I have never had the pleasure of seeing a Verdin before, so it's especially nice to view one on your terrific blog. Good luck finding the Common Yellowthroat!

    1. Thanks very much Julie. Did you come across any Yellowthroats down in Florida? The Verdins pop up a lot and can been misleading, tricking one into thinking it's another warbler or some other unusual bird, but even when you get the specs or the lens on em' and realize, "Oh, it's just a Verdin," they're still lots of fun.