Friday’s Feathered Friends- Red-breasted Merganser Male

Copyright ©2021 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Late in January, I heard there was a Red-necked Grebe in Lake Tahoe and it’s a bird I’ve never seen so wanting to get out of the house between storms He-Man and I drove over there for a walk-about and see what we could see. No grebe anywhere, but I did see a small group of Common Mergansers, and one that didn’t look quite like the others, but looked like a Merganser. I made some images and when I got home uploaded the images and discovered to my delight the one in the group that was a little different was a Red-breasted Merganser Male. A new bird for me, and Lifer number one for 2021!

They weren’t doing much of anything when I saw the group. I think it was a bit early and they were still waking up. 😀

Male Red-breasted Merganser Lake Tahoe 2021

Fun facts about them gleaned from my favorite source allaboutbirds.org

  • The Red-breasted Merganser breeds farther north and winters farther south than the other American mergansers.
  • Red-breasted Mergansers don’t acquire breeding plumage until they are 2 years old.
  • Red-breasted Mergansers need to eat 15 to 20 fish per day, which researchers suggest means they need to dive underwater 250–300 times per day or forage for 4–5 hours to meet their energy needs.
  • The oldest recorded Red-breasted Merganser was a female, and at least 9 years, 6 months old when she was shot in Alaska, the same state where she had been banded.

That’s a lot of diving and foraging isn’t it!

I hope you all a lovely week-end!

Panasonic Lumix FZ200| PS CC 22.3.0

more to come…

Friday’s Feathered Friends-Sage Thrasher

Copyright ©2021 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

My neighbor and I have begun taking our cameras on our walks because we’re seeing more and more of the Spring migrating birds passing though. Last week on a longer walk to another neighborhood we spotted this guy eating those Russian Olives. Don’t they look like pearls?

Sage Thrasher

They are the smallest of the Thrashers and love the sagebrush of the western states. We’re on the western edge of its breeding territory. They mimic other birds while they sing. I didn’t hear this one singing though.

I was surprised to see this one up in tree! They usually are hanging around the sagebrush and will hide in it.

I hope you all have a great weekend, and if you’re watching the game I hope your team wins.

Fuji X-T3| Fuji 100-400mm| PS CC 22.1.1

more to come…

Friday’s Feathered Friends- Red, White, and Blue

Copyright ©2021 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I told you I would show you the beautiful Vermilion Flycatcher that I went to see in Maxwell, CA a few week ago, and today is the day! He’s a year round resident of Mexico and South America. He does come north to So. Texas and So. California for breeding season, and has been seen in the states along the gulf coast states. How this one found his way up here in Central Calif. is a mystery, but it’s been returning for 5 winters now. He’s rare there.

Isn’t he pretty?

Fuji X-T3 w/ Fuji 100-400mm lens @400mm

Almost two weeks ago He-Man went up to Washoe Co. the next county over to go on a bike ride and I went with him not to ride, but to bird while he rode and guess who I saw? The White-headed Woodpecker! This is a male. I only saw this species for the first time last year so I still do a happy dance when I see one.

This one was so busy foraging he didn’t care about me too much. Once in awhile he did check me out.

Fuji X-T3| Fuji 100-400mm @400mm

Sunday two neighbors and I went for our walk and we decided to go further than the mailbox and go up the hill and come home the back way where we saw Mountain Bluebirds foraging in the Russian Olive trees. The Olives are like little nuts that they seem to really like.

I saw this species for the first time last Spring, but didn’t have my camera with me but, by the time I raced home on foot to get the camera and return to the spot I saw one it was gone. I am so glad I had a camera with me on Sunday! Mountain Bluebird Male

Panasonic Lumix FZ200 @600mm

It’s been a good birdy couple of weeks that has been waylaid by weather. We’ve had snow! I won’t be out birding for a few days.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend, stay healthy, and safe.

more to come…

Friday’s Feathered Friends- Waders

Copyright ©2020 Deborah M. Zajac.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

This week’s theme for Lisa’s weekly Bird challenge is Waders.  In April and May, I was looking for them but saw only a few here, but they’re a pretty few.

American Avocets in breeding plumage:

American Avocets

Black-necked Stilt- I think this one is a male. I love their pink legs! I think they look fancy and classic with their black and white feathers and pink legs. Also, they have the sweetest big eyes!

Black-necked Stilt

and a White-faced Ibis- in breeding plumage:  It was the only one in the pond. I see a good size flock of them flyover every morning and evening but have no idea where they go or come from. I hope to find the flock one day.

White-faced Ibis

Now that we’re in Summer many of the migrating birds are gone like these waders. I look forward to their return in the winter and spring.

We’ve been having some hot and windy days with thunder a couple of days which brought lightning along and now there are a couple of bush fires in the area we’re watching. It’s supposed to cool down on Sunday but the wind isn’t going anywhere soon.

I hope you’ve had a good week, and your week-end is a good one too!

Fuji X-T3| Fujinon 100-400mm| PS CC 21.2

more to come…

bird_weekly_badge_400 web

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday’s Feathered Friends-Bullock’s Oriole Male

Copyright © 2020 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

For this week’s Friday’s Feathered Friends, and Lisa’s Weekly Bird Challenge whose theme this week is Yellow Birds I have to share the male Bullock’s Oriole!

Bullock's Oriole Male

They pass through here during mating season and stay high up in the treetops making photographing them a challenge.  I saw this guy not too long ago in April while birding.

Fuji X-T3| Fujinon XF100-400mm LM OIS| PS CC 21.1.2

more to come…

https://oureyesopen.blog/2020/06/19/bird-weekly-photo-challenge-birds-with-yellow-feathers/bird_weekly_badge_400

 

 

Friday most Fowl- Harrier Hawk

Copyright ©2019 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Last week I was gazing out my back door when all of a sudden a pair of Harrier Hawks cruised by hunting right out my backyard! I only had my little bridge camera nearby so opened the door and started firing frames.

Here are two images:  By the time I got my camera one of them was flying out further in the field and I kept saying, ” come back, come back!”, the other one had flown way off to the west.Harrier Hawk in Flight

It did come back and this is the best image I got of it.

Harrier Hawk Male

I think this is a Male Harrier. Its mate, she didn’t stay nearby so I didn’t get an image of her.  I didn’t have it set up in burst mode and this camera can’t track very well so I’m disappointed in the shots I did get. Actually, I’ve been feeling that way often recently as I go through my images looking for something good to post and share. In any case, I was so excited to see the pair right outside my backyard!

It’s been snowing here.  I don’t know the official “inch” total, but it’s beautiful.

He-Man and I bundled up one day and walked the mile to the mailbox between breaks in the weather and here’s the view of Job’s Peak from the street by the mailboxes.

Snowy Day in the Neighborhood

It’s been foggy and you can’t see the mountains right now, but Hopefully, that changes soon and I get out to photograph some snowy scenes.

I hope you all have a wonderful week-end! I hope to get the tree decorated. I feel so behind!

Lumix Fz200| Lexar Digital Film| PS CC 21.0.1

more to come…

 

 

 

Wordless Weds. Barn Owl

Copyright ©2019 Deborah M. Zajac.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Barn Owl

Nikon D810| Nikkor 200-500mm| Lexar Digital Film| PS CC 20.0.7

more to come…