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Wildlife Reguge in Town by the Bay

For the last couple of weeks, off and on, I've been watching a particular bird and hoping to see two of them. In the past we've had several appear in our area of Texas, then...become scarce.  If I did see two, perhaps they'll stick around during the breeding season long enough for me to see, in person, the breeding plumage of this species. So far, I've only viewed the more colorful plumage in guidebooks and online. Well, this week, I DID SEE TWO. Have they paired up? Are they one of each gender? I don't know...but, I will keep watching for them, and hope they don't leave the area before their courtship begins if they are indeed one male and one female. On a few of those days the past weeks, I've seen ONE for sure that's been 'out in the open' more. They're being quite elusive right now...remaining well-hidden in the foliage along the banks of the feeder canal.




They're Anhingas [an HING ahs]-the 'hing' is like king] - Also known as Snake Birds. Their very long neck, when swimming in the water, is exposed making them resemble a snake. Unlike most water birds, their oil glands are not quite as developed as most, so most often, when out of water you will see them drying their wings by either expanding them in the sun/air or grooming to dry their feathers.


This one, I believe is the female [I hope]...all the time I stuck around, it remained partially hidden and finally went further back into the cover while the other one....


...which I believe is the male, remained less concealed, keeping busy, preening.



COOPER'S HAWK

From the observation deck that is on the shore of the bay area I spotted a Cooper's Hawk far away along the tree lined trail. That instigated me to walk the trail in hopes of getting a closer photo of the hawk. By the time I reached the area in the trees where the hawk was located from far away, it had left. But here's what else I saw. And yes, I've spotted some of the surveillance cameras as the signs clearly state. Dunno if the cameras are operative tho. lol




Moonshine and Sunshine in the palms

...spending only a couple of hours at the park, I still had to get to the grocery store and stop to pick up some lunch. It was going to be a beautiful day with plenty of sunshine and mild tolerate temperatures.

24 comments :

  1. The anhinga looks like velvet! Your vision must be superhuman to see these hidden birds from a distance! I have trouble seeing them even when you draw a arrow!

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    1. It's all about movement to spot birds

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  2. I couldn't spot that bird in the first picture and even with your arrows wasn't sure I was seeing anything. I googled Anhinga to get a better look at what they look like. Very unique looking bird

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    1. They're unique ...only the kind a mother would love. 😆

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  3. I think my favorite photo today is the sun shining through the palm tree. love it. we have lots of anhinga here, come on over... not sure if you follow Eileen the bird photographer but this is a link to her Anhinga photos. I see why you want the under parts

    http://viewingnaturewitheileen.blogspot.com/search?q=anhinga

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    1. Yes...I rarely miss Eileen's posts.

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  4. Your eyesight to be able to spot these well-hidden birds is amazing. Picture #13 is my favorite today, especially when view full size.

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    1. Winter woods? Is that #13?

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    2. The strip at the bottom with all of the enlarged photos give it #13 out of 15. I don't see any reference to "Winter Woods."

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  5. Well no matter what, you sure know how to capture some outstanding photos! What a great place to visit. I'm hoping to catch some fun stuff today too, because we're having a few days of spring time here!

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  6. Even with the help of the arrows, I couldn't see them. But I do love the pretty velvet birds. :-)

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  7. Wow! You really have an eye for spotting birds! I couldn't see them without your arrows.

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    1. I think it's getting used to movements.

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  8. Interesting bird. It was beautiful here today. John tells me the Mesquite are blooming at the ranch and you know what that means. Geeze we didn't have any winter. I like to wear winter clothes.

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  9. You are a great spotter - I would miss those birds for sure. You sure have some beautiful birds there.
    PS - I like your new profile pic!

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  10. I think I remember these birds in Florida. do they dive underwater? they're so sleek. do you spot these birds with your naked eye or do you have glasses or does your camera help you?
    seems like a perfect day to me. :)
    hugs,
    Marie

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    1. ...spotted with naked eye [but I admit sometimes a branch wiil look like a bird!]. And yes they are in Florida [in Europe they're called divers]

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  11. I was just telling Eileen(Viewing nature with Eileen) how these birds fascinate me...I would love to live where I could see them Did you see her pics of them? they are wonderful

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    1. Yes...I have seen Eileen's photos!!

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