Bird watching

Back in early May, I spotted two birds in the Reelfoot Lake area that I had never photographed before.  The first was an Eastern Kingbird.  Quite a dapper looking fellow, he was sitting in a Cypress tree out in the lake.  I watched for some time as he flew off to snatch insects out of the air and then returned to the comfort of his perch in  the tree.

The other was a Baltimore Oriole sitting in a tree at the State Park.  He and his female companion were busy with the task of nest-building.  Between all the flurry of activity, he seemed to be dutifully guarding the site.  Baltimore Orioles migrate through our area in the springtime, but generally move northward for the summer.

You never know what you’re going to see when you get out in nature, find a quiet spot and take the time to listen and observe.

“Sometimes when we just stand still the grace finds us.”  ~Mary Davis

Noisy Grackles

I often enjoy retreating to the quietness of our backyard to sit and enjoy nature.  But recently, the backyard was unusually noisy due to several families of Common Grackles.  The dull brown juveniles screeched and squawked, demanding their parents’ attention.  The adults chattered as they made continual trips to the feeders in order to satisfy the endless appetites of the insistent juveniles.  Though an interesting scene to observe, the disturbance made by the grackles was quite the opposite of the peace and quiet that I had been expecting to find.

“We love to expect, and when expectation is either disappointed or gratified, we want to be again expecting.”  ~Samuel Johnson

Male Rose-breasted Grosbeak

The Rose-breasted Grosbeaks are once again migrating through on their journey to their breeding grounds up north.  Like clockwork, they stop over each spring to rest and dine on seeds from the feeders before continuing on their way.

“There is an appointed time for everything.  And there is a time for every event under heaven.”  ~Ecclesiastes 3:1

Prothonotary Warbler

I spotted this little warbler while walking along the boardwalk at Reelfoot Lake.  It was flittering among the branches of the cypress trees in search of insects to eat.

“Every moment is a new opportunity to be amazed.”  ~Jonathan Colman

Bobolink

We spotted a small flock of Bobolink on the levy near the Mississippi River.  The males were dressed in their attractive spring plumage.  After breeding season, they will molt and take on the buff-brown colors of the female.

… Upon a tuft of meadow grass,
While thy loved-one tends the nest,
Thou swayest as the breezes pass,
Unburthening thine o’erfull breast
Of the crowded songs that fill it,
Just as joy may choose to will it …
~James Russell Lowell

Waiting to be fed

For a while, a Cardinal family had a nest right outside one of my windows.  Here are a few pictures of the Cardinal babies patiently waiting for their food.

“Each life is made up of mistakes and learning, waiting and growing, practicing patience and being persistent.”  ~Billy Graham