In a flooded field

Originally posted on nature has no boss:
After a nice spring shower the grass seemed to spring up just a bit greener and these wet field provided the perfect place for some Long-Billed Curlews to spend the afternoon foraging. Curlews are a bird we seem to never tire of observing. Probing the grass with that enormous bill. Amazing birds. Continue reading In a flooded field

Raptor Wednesday

Originally posted on Backyard and Beyond:
An Osprey circled over Sylvan Water looking for sign of fish below. Sylvan Water, haunt of, at various times, cormorants, kingfishers, and herons, was not producing breakfast for this huge raptor.Note the toes, swept back under the tail. When these birds dive, they move their feet forward to strike and grasp their fishy prey. Shallow water hunters, they don’t… Continue reading Raptor Wednesday


Originally posted on Backyard and Beyond:
We were hoping this Northern Watersnake would keep coming, passing under the boat launch dock we were standing on.But this Nerodia sipedon wasn’t playing. Instead it took shelter in these rocks, amid crabs, oysters, and periwinkles, peeping out occasionally to see if we were still there. Can you spot it?Here’s what we thought was a big Ratsnake (Pantheropphis obsoletus)… Continue reading Herps

Red-headed Excavations

Originally posted on Backyard and Beyond:
This Red-headed Woodpecker kept going in head-first and emerging tail-first to toss wood scraps away. This was in Virginia. It’s unusual to see one of these in NYC, although sometimes juveniles will show up — they don’t have the flag-like color blocking. During the winter of ’13-’14, a juvenile spent the winter in Green-Wood and by April was showing… Continue reading Red-headed Excavations

Recent Birds

Originally posted on Backyard and Beyond:
Spotted Sandpiper. A few have been working their way around the edges of the ponds in Green-Wood.Black-throated Blue Warbler.Eastern Kingbird.Hooded Warbler female.Rose-breasted Grosbeak. Female, much plainer than the showy male.Most of our migrants are insectivores, but these big-beaks are seed-crushers. *** George Boorujy’s Gang of Warblers is now available as a print. Very reasonably priced, and buying will benefit… Continue reading Recent Birds

A.C. Bent & Co. on Raptors

Originally posted on Backyard and Beyond:
Arthur Cleveland Bent published twenty-one volumes in his Life Histories of North American Birds between 1919 and 1968. The last two volumes were posthumous. They originally came out in the U.S. National Museum Bulletin. Later they were republished by Dover. There’s an internet edition now. The Dover paperbacks are a standard sight in used book store natural history sections. But I’d… Continue reading A.C. Bent & Co. on Raptors