Saturday, November 1, 2008

Oh, happy day: A hooded merganser is here!!!

hooded merganser
We were planning on going to the Meadowlands to see migrating ducks. However, Chris glanced out the window and saw what she thought was the bufflehead. When she got the binoculars, she was ecstatic that our favorite fancy duck was back: the hooded merganser. Sometimes it's hard to spot the small ducks with white among the geese. We have many false alarms due to the white on the geese's rear.

It was a lone male, and we spent some time watching to see if any others would join him. Last year, the female mergansers often arrived a while after the males. They were probably busy doing their hair.

hooded merganser
hooded merganser
hooded merganser

When we spotted a small duck flying overhead, we were so happy to think his mate would join him. When it landed, it turned out to be a female green-winged teal. He did swim over to greet her, and they interacted some the whole day.

hooded merganser

We do like the way that the shape of the white area on his head changes. It even looks like a heart sometimes and its reflection looks like a square other times...
hooded merganser
hooded merganser

We got nothing done and sustained ourselves on leftover Halloween candy all day.

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Female Green-winged Teal

Female Green-winged Teal

Here is a photo of the female green-winged teal that spent the day at Lake Nelson hanging out with the merganser.

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Song Sparrow

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Chris' Kingfisher photos

 

 


Mike has been taking most of the kingfisher photos with the new camera. He went in the house to warm up and Chris got a turn.

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Egret in Flight

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Gull visiting Lake Nelson

Seagull

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The odd couple


Whitey
Whitey seems to pair up with a Canada Goose each fall.

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Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Bufflehead arrived!!!



Maybe this little bufflehead heard that we were disappointed at not seeing any of his kind at Sandy Hook over the weekend. It sure was nice of him to drop by to cheer us up. Here's what happened this morning. Chris was downstairs and sounded the alarm when she spotted him. Mike rushed down and we both went out on our dock to see him and photograph him. He swam down to the dam, so we decided to take a walk to get closer to him down there. Of course, in the few minutes it took us to get there we lost him. When we came back home, we didn't see him again either, but Chris did see two American Widgeons. Mike was inside and did not see her frantically waving her arms for him to come out with the camera, so we have no pictures of them. Eventually Mike got on his way to work, and Chris had a little more time before she had to leave. The little guy came back and the sun was better by then, so she was able to get some that really show all his great coloring around his head. He was even here later in the day for a little while when she got back from work. We like the comparison of the pictures for two reason. It shows the distinct size difference between him and the geese and also the difference the lighting can make.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

Titmouse and Hawk: misseymarie from Butler, NJ






I finally was able to get a picture of a Titmouse. I have been trying for months but they are usually too quick for me. When we get 4 or 5 at a time, they just carry on in their playful, amusing manner and bring a smile everytime.

The picture of the Hawk is either a Coopers or Sharp-shinned. We have had Hawk visitors a lot lately and I not sure if there is a couple of different ones or I'm taking pictures of the same Hawk and they just look different because of the way the light shines off them. I don't think the light has anything to do with the eye color but I have a couple of pictures and the Hawk has blue eyes and the picture I took today the eyes look yellow. Photo's by misseymarie : ) Butler New Jersey.

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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Brant at Sandy Hook

Brant

It was a nice day today so we decided to go to Sandy Hook. We were hoping to see some migrating bufflehead, but they didn't show. We did see the ruby head of the ruby-headed kinglet but didn't get a picture. We also saw some brant, a small goose.

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