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Showing posts from 2018

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker in Canon City

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I found this Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, my first of the season for this species, today in Canon City.  While we usually have several Williamson's Sapsuckers for the fall/early winter season, we usually get at least one Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and in most years a Red-naped Sapsucker.

This sapsucker is in juvenal plumage:  white wing stripe,  indistinct black and white striped face, and this one shoes the beginnings of the red crown found on this species.  SeEtta

Harlan's Red-tailed Hawk in Canon City

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(note click on 'Read More' below to see the other photos of this hawk)  I spotted this Harlan's Red-tailed Hawk today not far from the Arkansas River above a field right in town.  It was 150-200 feet away so had to crop severely to get these pics.
 The significant amount of white on this hawk's face, the white on it's breast and mottling on tail are field marks for this northern sub species of Red-tailed Hawk.
Some years we get a 5 or more Harlan's moving through or spending some of the winter.  This is the first one I have seen in the Canon City area this winter.  SeEtta


What the Cape May Warbler in Pueblo City Park is eating and where it has been seen

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I noted on the previous post that the Cape May Warbler appeared to be after some pretty small 'lumps' on a pine needle a few centimeters from it's bill as shown above.   Dave Leatherman, retired entomologist, shared the following in a post on Cobirds listserv regarding this bird's food sources: 

"Those look like the same aphids that have been attracting a lot of the late warblers along the Front Range.  I think it is the Powdery Pine Needle Aphid (Eulachnus rileyi or related species in the same genus).  Other warblers I have confirmed eating this same aphid of late are Blackburnian in Longmont, Yellow-rumped in Longmont, Yellow-rumped in Denver West Office Park, Palm Warbler in Denver West Office Park (per communication from Mark Chavez), Unknown warbler (probably Orange-crowned) in Denver West Office Park.  In autumn's past, I have seen a Blackburnian in Greeley, a Bay-breasted and Northern Parula in Boulder and a Pine in Loveland going for this sa…

Video clips of Pueblo, CO Cape May Warbler foraging in pine tree

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Yes, two short video clips and more pics including the one directly below that shows the warbler as it goes after some apparent food source on a pine needle (maybe insect larva?)
Cape May Warbler in Pueblo,Colorado from SeEtta Moss on Vimeo.
(Note: click See More located on lower right to see the videos) These are two short video clips of the Cape May Warbler I got to watch earlier this week in Pueblo, Colo City Park. During the full hour I (and Brandon Percival) watched this very rare warbler for this area it stayed in one pine tree. I was told it had also been seen in other pine trees located around the administration building in City Park. SeEtta
CapeMayWarbler in Pueblo Colorado\

A Cape May Warbler in Pueblo, CO, big rarity

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This very rare eastern Cape May Warbler was found by Brandon Percival and Van Truan 2 days ago in Pueblo City Park.  I ran into Brandon yesterday there and we looked for it for about 45 minutes before it showed itself in one of pine trees near the administration building.
This was one of the most cooperative warblers as it foraged in the lower branches of the tree and stayed in that same tree for an hour as we got great views and photo opportunities.  More Later.  SeEtta



Light morph Ferruginous Hawk

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I was driving back to Canon City from a long day in Pueblo so I took the scenic, and often more birdie, root via H96.  I spotted this hawk and got these 3 pics that show most of the field marks for this subspecies.
These show the snowy white underparts that have scattered rufous feathers, white tail, the pale head and gray cheeks and some of the rufous shoulders and back found on this morph of Ferruginous Hawk.  Not visible are their feathered legs.  SeEtta

Handsome Williamson's Sapsucker

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Every fall and winter I get to drive around my town of Canon City to watch and photograph a number of sapsuckers. There are always several Williamson's Sapsuckers and this year is no different. These are pics of one of two male Williamson's Sapsuckers I have found so far.
 These males have such striking plumage.  They, and their female counterparts, have outsized feet compared to their body size.  SeEtta


Cedar Waxwings feasting on crab apples

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I am back😀 I spotted some Cedar Waxwings in a couple of crab apple trees located right next to busy 9th Street in Canon City. 
 There were about 20 to 25 birds in the flock. 
I have had a flock of about the same size visit my yard a number of times in October to feed on crab apples and other small fruit, but couldn't get any reasonable pics of them. Several more pics, just click on Read More.  SeEtta


Migrating Chimney Swifts going to roost in chimney

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I heard a couple of Chimney Swifts making their chittering sounds and as I watched more appeared. I walked around the Goodwill Store building to get a better view.   I was delighted to see that this flock totaled 25-30 swifts. Since about the most breeding Chimney Swifts I have seen in Canon City is 8, this is a migrating flock that are stopping over to feed and roost. The pic below shows 16 or 17 of the swifts as they circled close to the Goodwill chimney in preparation for entering the roost. The pic just above shows one of the swifts as it briefly hovered, using it's tail feathers opened widely, before diving quickly into thhttps://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=57749986988450056&pli=1#editor/target=post;postID=6517924101953644242;onPublishedMenu=allposts;onClosedMenu=allposts;postNum=0;src=postnamee chimney. The short video clip below shows this flock of swifts as they move in and dive into the chimney to roost for the night. SeEtta Chimney Swifts Entering M…

A juvenile Peregrine Falcon

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I spotted this juvenile Peregrine Falcon driving on Red Canyon Road north of Canon City last week. Though I used a 600mm (equivalent) lens and cropped the pic severely, since it was perched 400-500 feet away I couldn't enlarge it more than this.

Just to give some perspective, the pic below is what the pic above looked like before I cropped it to enlarge the Peregrine. SeEtta

"Hidden" Belted Kingfisher

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I photographed this Belted Kingfisher at Florence River Park from my car.  As the bird was behind a number of tree and shrub branches it thought it was hidden so it stayed put about 30 feet from my car (they usually flush at that close distance)--of course those branches made getting a clear shot a challenge.
While field marks of blue-gray  head and back, white collar, black dagger like bill are usually noted, often not mentioned is the small white  spot in front of each eye.  Interestingly these white spots are thought to assist their fishing skill:  "That “perfect” aim, some biologists believe, is enabled by two white “false eyes” in front of the bill. These spots may serve as sighting devices along the line of the bill, allowing the eyes to fix binocular vision on the prey, and also correcting for light refraction at the water’s surface, which makes prey appear to be nearer the surface than …

Black Phoebe fledgling and parent

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I took all these pics from inside my car after driving up to about 40 feet from one Black Phoebe. I waited patiently while it just perched quietly, then this juvenile Black Phoebe flew in to a perch less than 25 feet from me providing for such nice close-ups.   The juvenile is in spanking new plumage and it's brown wing stripes (denoting juvenal plumage) stand out nicely.
Just a bit of this fledgling's yellow flanges can be seen, but very small amount as this is clearly an older fledgling (ie, tail is not very short ).  It is even starting to show the raised crown found on adult Black Phoebes.  Also I saw the fledgling do some foraging on it's own, so it is close to gaining independence.
The adult is feeding the fledgling in the pic above.
Some of the insect that the parent bird fed to the fledgling is shown above. 
Bottom 2 pics are of the parent bird. It is scruffy looking, showing disheveled feathers due to a lot of wear. The white feathers shown above are body f…