Showing posts from May 15, 2011


In the pics on the earlier post and in the top pic, it is clear that this bird has bright yellow plumage on it's underparts and a dark gray hood with no visible eye arcs. The upperparts are olive green and it has a short tail. When enlarged further by clicking on each pic it is possible to see the blackish lores and the darker black coloration on the bottom of the hood forming what Birds of North America online aptly called a black 'bib.' Again, I have not edited these pics, other than cropping to enlarge, in order to preserve coloration and shading--since this species likes dense vegetation, the areas it was in were very shaded so the pics are dark. SeEtta

MOURNING WARBLER, very rare bird I found today near Lamar, CO

This morning I birded at a super neotropical migrant trap called Temple Grove. This is a unusual nice grove of trees and shrubs extending for close to a half mile along the Ft Lyon Canal--as this canal moves water to agricultural areas from the Arkansas River it is unusual to see such extensive vegetation as the canal companies routinely remove both native and non-native trees and shrubs to reduce water 'lost' to them.
I first spotted this bird this morning but only had a very brief look, too brief to call such a rarity (and life bird for me). I didn't refind it until after lunch. Though I got the top pic at that time, I couldn't tell if it was good enough to show field marks in the small lcd screen on my camera so I kept looking and refound him a second time at almost 2 pm when I got the bottom pic and two more posted next. I have not edited these pics in order to preserve the coloration and shading though they are pretty dark (this species likes dense vegetation …

Pretty chestnut-cheeked Stilt Sandpipers north of Rocky Ford,CO

I found these two Stilt Sandpipers foraging in the Ordway,CO Feedlot lagoons. I think these sandpipers are very attractive in their Alternate (breeding) plumage, especially the chestnut cheek patches. There have been several sightings of this fairly unusual species this spring (more commonly seen in the fall in Colorado) further east in Colorado, most in the southeast area of the state. SeEtta

More Canon City Riverwalk colorful birds

I photographed these two birds on the Canon City,CO Riverwalk this week. The female Black-headed Grosbeak flew in quite close but thought she was hidden behind the foliage. She was one of a number of Black-headed Grosbeak that were chasing each other as a part of breeding behavior.
I didn't get the greatest view of the male Lazuli Bunting but I do like to show the underside of birds since that is often the view we get in the field. SeEtta

One of the Gray Flycatchers

This is one of the Gray Flycatchers moving through the Canon City,CO area as they migrate. This one was on the Canon City Riverwalk foraging away from the river. See the nice eye-ring, short primary projection, and the pale band across the forehead. Plus it pumped it's tail downward. SeEtta

More pics of the Traill's Flycatcher in previous post

I like both of these pics because they provide very good views of the wing feathers and the long primary projection. SeEtta

Enticing empid--safely calling it a Traill's Flycatcher

In addition to the Olive-sided Flycatchers and a few Western Wood-Pewees on the Canon City Riverwalk over the past few days, there were also empidonax (empid)
flycatchers moving through on their migration. In fact, I saw 8-10 empids day before yesterday and at least 8 yesterday both on the Canon City Riverwalk and just east of Canon City.
This empid was at the Canon City Riverwalk, though along the fence by an agricultural field off the parking lot. Though I suspect this is a Willow Flycatcher, but it didn't vocalize so I am playing it safe by calling it a Traill's (Willow/Alder complex). The only editing I am doing of these empid pics is cropping to enlarge them so their true coloration and shading (given the variations due to lighting) is retained. Got more close up pics and posting next. SeEtta

Strange view of Olive-sided Flycatchers

While birding on the Canon City, CO Riverwalk last week-end I spotted 2 large birds at the top of a tree over the trail and the top pic is what I saw--it took me a minute to realize that this was an Olive-sided Flycatcher from a bottoms-up view.
Given their location, the bottom 2 pics were the best I could get of these birds. I was surprised to see the light yellowish wash on the belly area when I enlarged the pics as they are usually not close enough to see this in pics and I don't think I've ever seen in in binoculars. I did check and Birds of North America online which said: "Whitish belly sometimes has pale-primrose-yellow wash." I ran into 2 Olive-sided Flycatchers just about an hour ago and at the same location on the Riverwalk (same birds??? maybe using this as a stop-over location to fuel up for the rest of their migration journey). This time they were calling though all I could hear was the 'three beers' part of their 'quick three beers' …

More Broad-winged Hawk pics

The top pic shows nicely the rufous brown barring on the leg feathers on this bird. Also seen are the mostly whitish undertail coverts. Other than the light superciliary line (seen best by clicking on pic to enlarge it) above the eye, the hawk appears to have adult plumage. I am wondering if this hawk is in transition to Basic I plumage. SeEtta

Broad-winged Hawk, another Canon City Riverwalk goodie

I spotted this unusual hawk yesterday morning on the Canon City, CO Riverwalk. Broad-winged Hawks have become quite regular with usually one or more found in spring in the riparian forest area here. Though this hawk looks like an adult, a light supercilium can be seen in the bottom pic (only editing was cropping) which is listed as a juvenal trait by Wheeler in Hawks of Western North America and in Birds of North America online. More pics (supercilium best viewed by clicking on each pic to enlarge) in next post. SeEtta

Northern Waterthrush along Arkansas River by Canon City,CO Riverwalk

This morning I found this Northern Waterthrush foraging along the shoreline of the Arkansas River adjacent to the Canon City Riverwalk. This species is uncommon here with only few being spotted as they move through during migration. SeEtta