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Old 09-19-2013, 03:32 PM   #21
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Speaking of Loons....

First real close contact was in the Minnesota/Canada Boundary Waters... Something different when you're 10 miles away from the nearest electric light, on a big lake with the moon shining down...
...and you hear the call... eerie and beautiful...
It set us off on a love affair with loons... A loon CD with calls and an hour of loon music that we used to go to sleep, way back when...
Even now... a large Loon Painting above our fireplace, and more in the den, as well as the collection of more pictures, gathered during our loony days.
Seeing the baby back loons is an extra special treat...
Still waiting for one to land at our camp on Bass Lake...
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:45 PM   #22
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I'm going to start shooting more birds soon (photography)

Hopefully I'll see some boobies! http://www.weather.com/news/science/...obies-20130919
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Old 03-08-2014, 07:25 AM   #23
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Bumping the thread as Spring nears... and to tell my latest Bald Eagle story...

Since we haven't gone to Florida yet, and because this has been such a cold winter, my neighbor and I decided to take a 15 minute ride to Starved Rock State Park on the Illinois River, close to our winter home... We had heard that the January Eagle Watch had been disappointing and that the thousands who came to see the annual event went away somewhat diasappointed.

The river was about 80% frozen over, and only kept somewhat ice free because of the ultra sonic ice busting machines at the S.R. Dam and the Corp of Engineer Lock... Huge chunks of ice...

As we drove along the river... a big splashing commotion ahead... (the river is about 30 feet from the road at that point)... I slowed and stopped. About 50 feet away, a life struggle was taking place. A bald eagle was fighting, in and out of the water, the 6 foot wingspan splashing and creating a fog of white water... for about two minutes... with what looked to be a 7 pound bass...
in his talons. Then, out of the water with the bass, onto an ice floe... only to watch the bass flip itself back into the water, where the struggle began again. One more try to lift the bass, and it slipped away to freedom.

We saw a few more eagles and perhaps 200 Canada Geese along with many gulls... all relying on the river for food, as the ground is frozen and snow covered.

As an interesting aside, when Rachel Carson wrote Silent Spring, the bald eagle was listed as endangered. Once the Corp of Engineers opened the Mississippi (and the Illinois) river to year round barge traffic, the flowing waters allowed the Eagle and other species to recover by providing food year round, and re-establishing the flyways in the Midwest.

As we come nearer to spring, and once again have temperatures that "finally" break the 32 degree mark, we'll await the arrival of the flocks from the south. Just hoping that our hmming birds find their way back to our camp. Been a lo-ong winter.

BTW... the third egg has arrived in the nest at Decorah Iowa... Watch it live, 24/7 here:
Decorah Eagles, Ustream.TV: EGG 3 Third egg is here on Sunday, March 2nd at 6:43 PM Videos below. EGG 2! The second egg arrived Wednesday, Feb. 26th, ...
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:44 AM   #24
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Eagles, herons, ravens, owls, peckers, geese, ducks, whatever in the back yard at times.
Walked by the old ferry pier yesterday and saw some pigeon guillemots.
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:06 PM   #25
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It's that time of year to watch the hummingbird map:
Hummingbird Migration Maps
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:11 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Free To Canoe View Post
It's that time of year to watch the hummingbird map:
Hummingbird Migration Maps
We've had a Rufous Hummingbird here all winter. I've made sure our feeders are well stocked on those 36 degree high days.

We also have a year-round resident hummer here - the Buff-bellied Hummingbird. In the US you have to come down to the southern tip of Texas to see one of those. They are big and very cool.
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:21 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by audreyh1 View Post
We've had a Rufous Hummingbird here all winter. I've made sure our feeders are well stocked on those 36 degree high days.

We also have a year-round resident hummer here - the Buff-bellied Hummingbird. In the US you have to come down to the southern tip of Texas to see one of those. They are bog and very cool.
If we can't wait for the hummers to come to us, perhaps we can go to them!

Buff-bellied Hummingbird, Identification, All About Birds - Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Cool!
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:32 PM   #28
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I saw one of these for the first time in my life. My photo is poor. I was using a pocket camera at quite a distance.

Crested Caracara, Identification, All About Birds - Cornell Lab of Ornithology
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