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Everything posted by GracesWarbler

  1. It's my forum namesake, Grace's Warbler, looking very fluffy:
  2. Oh, if the question is global, then I have lots! My top choice, as mentioned above, is the Emperor Penguin. When I was younger, I thought they were the same size as people (~6 feet tall), probably because the nature documentaries rarely show them beside people. Other than that, probably shoebill, toucan, and bowerbird.
  3. Great (tiny) owl, Seattle! It snowed where I live a couple days ago, and on each of the past three days I've tried to get some wintery bird pictures, with basically no success. There wasn't much snow at the park today, but I found some Western Bluebirds (and some LBJs).
  4. Here are some from today: I'm trying to get together some more photos for my annual bird calendar. Are any of these interesting enough to put in a calendar?
  5. Cool stuff on this page! I haven't been birding much this year, but I decided to go somewhere new this afternoon. It's a popular walking spot, but I didn't feel self-conscious about carrying my big lens, which was nice. If anything, I wish I could have shown people the results! A raven was hopping around in the distance. After a while, I found some Pygmy Nuthatches (I think?). They were gathering seeds from flowers, and were fairly fearless. I was standing about 10 feet from the flower, and they just kept coming back over and over again.
  6. I went birding on Sunday, and I finally got a good luck at a little yellow bird I've seen glimpses of before. Apparently it was a Common Yellowthroat. I think yellow birds are my favorite, so this was a joy to see. Still, the name was a bit of a surprise: if it's so common, why have I so rarely seen them? Does anyone here have a favorite bird color?
  7. Sure, I'd love to hear some recommendations. I live up in Flagstaff, and the only places I've gone in the Gilbert/Phoenix area are the Riparian Preserve, the Desert Botanical Gardens, and one of the Phoenix city parks.
  8. I'm making a bird calendar for friends and family, so I want to get IDs right. Below is a photo I took in Gilbert, AZ (next to Phoenix), in September. A flock of these birds were swooping around together near the water. The area has some ponds and some trees (it's the Riparian Preserve at Water Ranch, if you know the area). These are Least Sandpipers, right? Or something else? Is the leg color the best way to distinguish Least Sandpipers from others? Also, I want to make sure I'm correctly IDing the Cormorants below. Are these both Neotropic Cormorants, right, due to the feath
  9. I really like the composition on this one. Great shot! Growing up on the East Coast, I was used to seeing Blue Jays. Out here in the west, we get Steller's Jays, which have a rad crest. I sat at a table for a good 20 minutes or so before this one finally showed up. I think it wanted food from me, but I didn't have any. Just look at that crest!
  10. Hmm, what is the general practice around here for sharing birding spots? I'm sure that you're a responsible birder, but I also don't want to stress the birds by bringing too much attention to them. Opinions?
  11. I saw some Rosy-faced Lovebirds for the first time this weekend! They're native to Africa and were brought to the U.S. as pets, but now several thousand live and breed in the wild in Phoenix. Apparently, the population has been growing for the past 25 years, and Phoenix is one of the only places in the U.S. where wild populations live. So despite the >100 degree temperatures, I got to see these goofy parrots hanging out in a palm tree, flying around, and squeaking loudly.
  12. I took a trip to a riparian preserve near Phoenix last weekend, and saw a Great Egret for the first time! However, I noticed something in its tail, which hung down into the water as it walked around to hunt. See the second photo, below. At first I thought it was long tail feathers, but I don't see any feathers like this when I look at other Great Egret photos online, so now I'm wondering if it was a reed or something. Do Great Egrets stick things into their tails? Is this normal, or unusual? Any insight would be appreciated! Bonus picture: while I watched, the egret walked
  13. Cool shot, and great lighting! It looks like it's wearing a long coat. I went somewhere new for birding last weekend: a riparian preserve near Phoenix. Lots of birds, rabbits, and turtles, and lots of people too! Northern Shovelers. A coot. A Snowy Egret, hunting. A catch! I can't quite tell what it got. Can anyone identify it? Some sort of fish?
  14. We got a record one-day snowfall where I live yesterday (nearly three feet!). That morning, I spotted a house finch on the balcony, chirping. Hopefully those feathers keep it warm.
  15. Spots vs. stripes! Neat. Here's are some Yellow-headed Blackbirds. Male: Female:
  16. Hoot hoot! Today I saw a Great Horned Owl! (Perhaps for the first time.) This was at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix.
  17. Wonderful examples so far. I like how the male Rose-winged Parakeet looks like it has a a goatee. Here's a female and male Gambel's Quail:
  18. There is a fantastical variety of birds, and some species have notable differences between the males and females. Post your best photos showing these differences. Having both birds in the same photo is great, but not required. I'll start. Here's a male and a female Red-winged Blackbird:
  19. It amazes me how birds can manage to eat such large fish! Here's another one from the Phoenix Botanical Gardens. It's a Cactus Wren!
  20. How did this story end? I went down to the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix yesterday. Good birds there, and some let you get a little closer than normal, probably because they like the plants so much. Here's a lifer for me: a Verdin.
  21. From a couple weeks ago: Mountain Chickadee Lesser Goldfinch fledgling Western Bluebird
  22. Yeah, I was curious/worried about it, so I took a close look, but after a minute or so I left and gave it space. I figured it would be best not to crowd it. Hopefully it's growing up alright!
  23. I was birding a couple days ago (October 6) in Flagstaff, AZ, and I saw a tiny fledgling bird on the ground (first two photos). I saw a Lesser Goldfinch nearby (third photo), which I thought might be a parent. Two questions: 1) Is the little bird a Lesser Goldfinch? 2) Is it normal for a bird this young to be on the ground? It could flutter a little, but only fly a foot or so in the air. It hopped around a little, seemed unsure of what to do (but didn't seem too afraid of me), and chirped loudly. Do the parents come and feed birds in this situation? It was such a tiny little bird, so I
  24. Went out to my favorite birding spot last weekend. Here's a hummingbird. Is it a Broad-tailed (this is in Flagstaff, Arizona)? Here's a female Yellow-headed Blackbird. I've seen a bunch of males (to be fair, they are quite distinctive), but this is my first time noticing one of the females. I'd never seen one of these before. It's a Sora, and it ran off into the reeds practically as soon as I took this picture.
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