Wednesday morning was bright and beautiful along Lake Erie. We are visiting with friends and meeting folks at the Biggest Week in American Birding. Les Payton and I must have pulled the lucky straw, as we were offered one of the best gigs around: the beginning birders' trip.
|A "Birds and Blooms" moment with Blue Jay.|
Too often we long-time birders forget to enjoy the "common" birds. It is wonderful to spend time with folks who are happy to look at the real stunners, like a Blue Jay.
|Les Payton (wearing gold guide's hat) and our group of birders.|
|A female Purple Finch gives us a modeling session.|
|A Pheasant Back fungus.|
|Weedpicker Cheryl drives the BSBO bus.|
|Female (left) and male Red-winged Blackbirds|
Unpredictably, the most difficult bird to get for the group was the female Red-winged Blackbird! The males were numerous and conspicuous, but the females were quite shy. Perhaps they were already tending to nesting chores. We tried (and failed) to get the females in spotting scopes, but finally this pair came out to wave good-bye as we left the marsh. Go figure.
|Snowy Egret dancing in the marsh.|
Thanks to all the great guides, and support staff (Rob Ripma, Kim Kaufman, Delores Cole, and Ryan Steiner) who make these trips possible. The new and old birders alike are enjoying the Biggest Week in American Birding. Thanks to Black Swamp Birding Observatory in their efforts to educate and conserve birds. They are doing incredible work!