Showing posts from June 16, 2013

Cicadas on the fly

I first heard cicadas singing a week or so ago in the juniper/cactus grasslands near Canon City. Today as I drove through they were up and flying. I saw several dozen cicadas flying in about 2 miles of habitat. And many were singing away including these two. I think these are Cacama or Cactus Dodger--"They are known for their affinity for cacti like prickly pear & cholla..." which fits as there was both of these species of cactus in abundance in this location. SeEtta

Dickcissel flew up on utility wire and sang tonight

I had a meeting this morning so didn't get out to look for the Dickcissel until noontime. It sang a lot from a tree several hundred feet away. I returned this evening after 7 pm and it flew onto the utility line nearby where it sang for a good 5 minutes. We have terrible smoke from wildfires so no blue sky, just gray smoke that eats up photos. SeEtta

Also Dickcissel in Canon City

I also found at least one male Dickcissel in the same hay field as the Bobolink here in Canon City this week. In fact I heard the Dickcissel as I drove down the road next to this hay field. It has been singing more than the Bobolink but not as continuously as I have heard this species sing when they first arrive and are announcing their availability to females. It had been difficult to see as it was perching on trees on the west side of the field but on the side of the field not the side of road. This morning this one flew in almost right above my head (so close I had to take my camera off the tripod as it was directly above). Have only heard and seen one of these at a time so far also. SeEtta

Bobolink in Canon City

I found at least one male Bobolink in Canon City this week. This is in a hay field (both grass and alfalfa mix) where Bobolinks have nested in the past but not for several years (also have Dickcissel, in next post). I have only seen one male up singing at a time so not sure if only one male but unlikely very many. I believe the female(s) is on the nest as there is only intermittent singing. In fact much of the singing is being done from a bird perched on the vegetation in the field as shown by the photo below. SeEtta

LEAST BITTERN at Holcim Wetlands

Though I saw the LEAST BITTERN (actually saw 2 together) today I did not get any new photos. I took this yesterday and I believe it shows field marks for a male LEAST BITTERN: the neck and sides are chestnut brown or what Cornell's All About Birds website calls 'warm orange-brown' in my opinion. I don't have a view of the back but the neck and sides are a lot darker than the 'pale yellow buff' (per Sibley's). I did not get a diagnostic view of the 2 LEAST BITTERNS today so I can't say if either looked to be a male or female; but it would seem likely, given that this species has nested here before, that there was a male and female. SeEtta

TRICOLORED HERON continues at Holcim Wetlands

The TRICOLORED HERON I found 2 days ago at Holcim Wetlands east of Florence,CO continues at that location. It has been staying further from view near a section that is closed for nesting season since the evening of the first day I found it. I suspect it has felt disturbed and has found this location more to it's liking since now that the big push of fishing is over there are fewer who trespass the closed trail that is signed as closed. It does not provide the great views I and several more birders got that first day but it can be viewed and field marks are evident. SeEtta