I really enjoy birding this time of year. Actually there’s not a bad time of the year to bird, although late summer gets a little slow around here. Even then there’s lots of little surprises like the early Merlin I saw in late August. This time of year, though, is fun for a lot of reasons–lots of migrating birds coming through, some of the winter residents are starting to arrive, and I don’t have to get up so early to catch the early morning light and birds.
I didn’t see an Osprey at all last fall or spring , even though they are listed in my bird guides as a common migrant for the area. I saw one a couple of weeks ago and have seen it twice since. I think it is the same bird but I’m unable to say for sure. Wednesday morning I was able to get some nice photos of him.
I’ve also seen some of the winter residents around. This Song Sparrow posed for me Sunday morning.
Western Meadowlarks (Easterns also) are supposed to be year round residents but I’ve only seen one or two all summer. About a week or so ago Western Meadowlarks began showing up everywhere. I haven’t heard any Eastern Meadowlarks around yet. I said heard because that’s the only way i can tell them apart. Their songs are similar, but the Western’s is longer and more intricate and sort of chipper sounding while the Eastern’s is shorter and plainer and seems a bit melancholy to me.
American White Pelicans and Double-crested Cormorants have arrived at Meredith in the past week or two also. The pelicans and cormorants seem to enjoy each others company; I see them together a lot. The pelicans will often fish in groups, herding fish together to make them easier to catch.
See more photos in the galleries.