The hot weather with poor air quality from forest fires up north not only impact us humans. With temperatures in the 90s and air pollution dense from smoke and industry, we were all feeling a bit droopy.
This young robin landed on our fence Friday evening. You can tell his youth because of his spotted breast and overall lean appearance. Add to that he is molting his baby fluff.
This was a rare chance to capture a young bird that is adult in size only. This is a perilous stage for any bird. They are able to fly and get around but know nothing about cars, cats, people, eagles or many other hazards.
As we watched him at the hottest point of the day we wondered if he would go take a dip in the bird bath. That was not to be. Either he didn’t know how yet or he was too paranoid.
Another bird, I think one of his parents was calling out and he turned around showing us his back.
Then the calling came from the other side so he turned towards that. Being new to the big world can be overwhelming.
See the red tuff? That is his molting his baby feathers but also the heat has taken its toll making him look bedraggled.
As often happens, my photo opportunity ended as he flew away. The call of his parents was stronger than his curiosity of the big world.
As I traversed the Green River Trail over the last couple of weeks, I heard over and over about the Eagles down in Kent. I finally made it to that point and was not disappointed.
Not only did I find the Eagles but this is my 400th Crows of Arroyos posts. This blog adventure started in November 2010. What a long journey it has been. Thank you to everyone’s kind words and support
Yesterday, when I first walked up to the trail entrance, I knew this was the place. There was a gentleman with a camera on a tripod. He was very helpful and pointed out where the nest was.
Later when I came back from walking the trail a bit, I got this good shot of the nest. In hindsight if he had not been there I might have found it just by the poop trail running down the foliage.
The first time I saw the boy eagle was when my tutor said “incoming”. There he was landing on the right side of the nest tree. Not long after one of his parents came flying in. Then a lot of eagle talk started to happen. My tutor again told me that most of the sound was from the girl eagle still deep inside the nest. She had not fledged yet and the parents were giving the pair some tough love. The shots I got of him at this point were kind of fuzzy and he was shielded by leaves too. I think the high power equipment of my fellow watcher intimated me and plus I had left my tripod at home.
So, I went down the trail to get back to where I had left off to the north. Back on my quest to walk the trail from end to end. When I returned, I saw the gentleman tutor leaving. I was able to sit down on a bench and compose myself to get the photos you see here. The boy had moved closer to the nest and I had a steady hand.
Then it was my turn to educate others. As I sat on the bench, a golfer behind the fence that separated the trail from the course shouted out “hey Birdwatcher Lady”. He wanted to know where the nest was. This eagle nest is an urban legend in Kent as I had already found out weeks ago. I happily went over to the fence and pointed it out. Then lent my binoculars for them to see it better.
I got one more shot of the nest with my high power Nikon and then a photographers nightmare happened. My batteries died. They had gone from half charge to no charge in moments.
Hope you enjoy this view of nature at it’s best for our American Icon.
Baby birds find the darndest places to land when they fledge. Once they get there they often stay put and let their parents come to them.
This little swallow is no exception. On the Green River Trail there is a fence between the trail and a golf course which this little guy had landed on. He is all fluffy and gets agitated when his mom gets close. However, he won’t fly to follow her yet.
This little Sparrow and his family were sitting up in the tree next to our yard. Something got the attention of the flock and they all winged it away in mass. The baby who probably doesn’t fly that great and does not have flock flying confidence stayed put on his branch. After a little bit he dozed off in the setting sun’s warmth.
Here he is right after the flock flew off in a hurry. See how fluffy and light colored he is? Baby bird down feathers make him look like a plush toy.
Next he took a little nap as you can see in the first picture. His eye membrane covered his eye and he dozed away for about 5 minutes. When he woke up he realized I was sitting on the deck clicking pictures of him and gave me this “What are you looking at?” look.
This little sparrow was sitting on our deck the other morning. She looked so bedraggled and sad.
A steady stare into our window is a clear sign she knows bread will be offered soon. They learn early that this house has a soft spot for birds.
See how cute she was only a day or two earlier. All downy and fluffy still. Baby feathers still in place.
Then she turned a little more and I saw that not only was she wet but she had been pecked. The fluff on the back of her head was missing and she had a scab forming. Either her parents were tired of the baby-feed-me routine or another bird species thought this baby was in their way or might taste good.
Every morning I look for this baby with a bald head. Hope she made it.