On a Cool Winter Morning; We are Lovin’it

artsofjc

Checking on trees is a year round task. We recently went down into lower 30s requiring some plants to come indoors.  Now we are back in the 50s and having a blessed rain.  The trees are loving it.

I have a new tree in the collection that will require some research and re-potting soon. Austrian Black pine joins the family.

New Austrian Black pine sitting on double stack crates awaiting work.

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My 2018 Flock Count

The World According to Doray

2018 was a great birding year for me. I traveled to some fun places and had the opportunity to find/see birds not found in Texas.  Year end total count was 214 species.  Although it may be slightly higher as I wasn’t always diligent in my recording keeping – something I’ll address for 2019.

Here are some of my favorite bird pictures:  Yellow-rumped WarblerOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Carolina WrenOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Ladderback WoodpeckerOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

White-throated SparrowOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

American WigeonOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Golden-cheeked WarblerOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Ring-necked PheasantOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Black-bellied Whistling DuckOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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Spotted Harrier …

bobmcgee

Birds of prey make their living in different ways; Kestrels are fond of mice, Peregrines are fond of pigeons, Brown Falcons are fond of snakes. Hunting technique are appropriate to the creatures hunted.

Harriers go about their business fairly low over open country with wings upswept. In Australia we have a couple of members of the guild, Swamp Harrier and Spotted Harrier. One prefers wetter habitats the other drier habitats.

The dry plains around my home seem ideal for Spotted Harrier but for all that they are only occasional visitors. I was looking for quail when I encountered this one, so was he probably.

Spotted Harrier

When looking for mice in the grass slow flight is an advantage. Kestrels and Black-shouldered Kites can hover. They are both smaller birds, there is only so much energy in a mouse and hovering is expensive. The equation works for the small birds but…

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