Saturday, October 20, 2007

Cool Birds you can find around Baton Rouge

This month's Birding with the Family class was entitled "More than Wal-mart Birds" or.... "Cool Birds you can find in/around Baton Rouge". The turnout for the class was light, only 5 folks, and no kids :-( But it was fun nonetheless. Keri and I "tag-teamed" the material, which worked out well. But the pressure was on for the field trip... With a title like "Cool Birds" I was pretty much under the gun to show these folks some cool birds! So we started down at the roost at City Park lake at dawn. Had a good showing... Great Blue Herons, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Cattle Egret, Little Blue Heron, Tri-colored Heron, Double-crested Cormorant, and even a Green Heron and Black-crowned Night Heron to boot! Then we went to Bluebonnet Swamp. John H. was there to let us in early and also show us where the owls hang out. He's seen two Barred Owls hanging out consistently (Barbara and ??) and the Great-Horned Owl he's nicknamed "Harvey". Unfortunately, Harvey didn't show up, but Barbara showed up for us and posed for quite a few pictures. Nice!

The annual Big Sit

From The website: "THE BIG SIT! is like a Big Day, or a bird-a-thon in that the object is to tally as many bird species as can be seen or heard within 24 hours. The simplicity of the concept makes The Big Sit! so appealing. Find a good spot for bird watching -- preferably one with good views of a variety of habitats and lots of birds. Next you create a real or imaginary circle 17 feet in diameter and sit inside the circle for 24 hours, counting all the bird species you see or hear. That's it. Find a spot, sit in it, have fun."

So, we did :-)

Justin and Devin Eby-Bosler have done the Big Sit for the past 2 years in Baton Rouge close to the banks of the Mississippi River. This year they had the most participants, but unfortunately the lowest number of birds. Still it was great weather, and good birding company, so a worthwhile effort. There were some new birds this year, which is always fun.

Look, I actually got a picture of Lainie with her bins in her hand!
For a full report of the day, including a list of the 75 species we saw, visit:

Justin, Devin, Richard, Lainie, Lindsay, Harriett, and Sue -- Let's do it again next year!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Backyard visitor

Yesterday my dad commented that our backyard was like a Disney movie...all the little animals romping and cavorting in (nearly) perfect harmony. Well today would have been the arrival of the wicked witch. I opened the door to a quiet yard and then movement caught my eye. Cooper's or Sharp-shinned...I'm not sure which...but this hawk was after the happy little creatures in the yard. It made several attempts to get the squirrels, but didn't get one while I was watching. Quite an impressive bird...