ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, December 2, 2012

Updated on December 3, 2012
Source

See How to Get Clams the Crow Way!

On Monday, I located an American Crow with a clam. This bird was able to work it open and get the meat from it without a lot of difficulty. He managed this task in about 15 minutes, and luckily, had nobody to share it with. It surprises me that this character was alone, as there is a group of three juveniles that tends to travel together. I suppose that there is a strong probability that they all had their own treasure of various foods that they were unwilling to share with one another.

Source

Lesser Goldfinch

On Tuesday, I captured the Lesser Goldfinch with some perfect scenery. Last week, I saw a couple more of them, but was in the wrong spot for a good photo opportunity, since I had the sun in front of me. There is a specific area by the Southern Cove that they tend to frequent, which has a lot of thistle. I’ve been trying to hang around here as much as possible for these little birds, and it has certainly paid off.

These little beauties have a very lovely song, and eat remarkable amounts of weed seeds. They are a little smaller than the American Goldfinch.

Source

Female Bufflehead

Here’s a much better photo of the female Bufflehead. She paired up with a male, it seems, and they both tend to feed in the same area. Both were reasonably close to the shoreline, and with this shot in the light, you can see how blue-gray her bill is.

Canvasbacks(top)
Canvasbacks(top) | Source

Canvasbacks

Wednesday, the Canvasbacks made an appearance. They are rather easy to distinguish, due to the sloping profile from the front of the crown to the tip of its long dark bill. These are one of the heaviest and largest ducks in North American, averaging 2.8 pounds. Another thing that drew my attention was the fact that the males croak, so that is an unusual sound to be alert for.

Bufflehead(top) and two Goldeneyes(bottom)
Bufflehead(top) and two Goldeneyes(bottom) | Source

Common Goldeneyes

The Common Goldeneyes showed themselves on Friday, and I actually had to do a double take to believe my good fortune. The bright yellow eye is most noticeable against the contrasting head of the male. There is a large white spot on the lower face behind the blackish bill. This spot is one of the main identifying field marks on this duck.

Female Cardinal
Female Cardinal | Source

The Fog...

Sunday was a very foggy morning, but many water birds were a lot closer to the shore than they normally would have been. Fog can be a very good cover, but it can also hide a lot of predators in its grasp, too. Just for fun, I got a picture of the female Northern Cardinal having a little snack.

The Snow Geese Are Here!

Just as I was leaving the lake this morning, I heard the call of a number of geese, and eventually the Snow Goose flew over my head, so hopefully, they are in the area for a little while. I would hate to think that they would be flying too far in the fog, plus the fact that they would fly off without a picture taking opportunity. Perhaps next week, I’ll have a few pictures of them for you.

Keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding!

Ring-billed Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls | Source
Canada Goose
Canada Goose | Source
American Crow
American Crow | Source

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      It sure was interesting, precy anza. He wedged his bill in the closed part to work it open, then got his prize. It took about 15 minutes for him to get it open

    • precy anza profile image

      precy anza 4 years ago from USA

      Wow! I was amazed on how the crow had managed to open the clam. It would be a treat to watch one. :) Enjoyed all the photos as always!

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Oh, Eddy, thanks so much! Maybe one day, I'll publish them all. Next year, I plan to refer to the articles from a year ago.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      This is so beautiful my friend and I am opening a page in Word where I can save all my favourite nature hubs and this one is the first. Keep them coming as they are brilliant.

      Have a great day.

      Eddy.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Crows will eat almost anything, even the junk that gulls will eat.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      That Lesser Goldfinch is stunning and absolutely beautiful! Well Deb...another wonderful journey you have taken me on and I also learned another interesting tidbit. I am stunned as I never knew crows ate clams!

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Connie. The goose and its mate were washing earlier, and that was the aftermath! We should have a few more great ducks, I am told.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Highland Terrier! It is certainly my pleasure. I didn't realize how much my weeklies meant to people until just recently.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      That is a wonderful project. Can you by any chance mail me a checklist? Not only that, it will give me a South African stamp for my stamp collection!

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Yes, Alicia, crows are great birds, but not everyone can take them. I adore the black birds for their sharp minds.

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Hi Deb! It's amazing how clever crows are, isn't it? Loved the canvasback ducks. I've always heard about them, but never seen them before. That Canada Goose looks like its doing the Flamenco dance and shouting 'ole' ! Great pictures and information as always.

    • Highland Terrier profile image

      Highland Terrier 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Another very enjoy read and thank you for the photos. So many birds that I'll never actually get to see. It's nice seeing them in their natural habitat.

      Thanks again.

    • Johan Smulders profile image

      Johan Smulders 4 years ago from East London, South Africa

      Thanks for taking me to Boomer lake. You are helping me to get to know the USA birds. On my way to Chintsa today to list the birds for SABAP2.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is another enjoyable record of your Boomer Lake outings, Deb. It's so interesting to look at your photos and read about the birds and their behavior! This week my favorite photo is the second one of the crow. I think that crows are fascinating birds - they're so clever. As always, I'm looking forward to next week's report about Boomer Lake.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Bumpsysmum, plenty more coming. I started this series in March of 2012!

    • Bumpsysmum profile image

      Bumpsysmum 4 years ago from Cambridgeshire

      Brilliant piece. We do get the Goldeneye here and the Canada Goose, shame we don't get to see the others you describe here, can't have it all though. More please!

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      You are so welcome, Jim! The more, the merrier.

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      I always enjoy your outings to Boomer Lake, thanks for sharing them.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I'm glad you enjoyed it, Martin. Did you see enough at the lake?

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you so much for my Sunday outing,

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Jackie, the more that you visit your birds, the more that they will accept you. It is just a matter of time. Believe me, I know.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Thanks for the info. I do have fun with it and really proud of my flower shots but just lately into the bird shots thanks to you and can see I am not using the best equipment. Only the ducks and geese accept me close up, lol.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Oh, yes, Bill, it was a fantastic week at the lake. As the weeks pass, I just keep wondering what I will see. I just found out that this lake is not state-maintained, so I must contact this city and be certain that they know how important this lake is on the Central Flyway.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Great job Deb. Love the photos, especially the Lesser Goldfinch. Looks like it was a great week at Boomer Lake.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Jackie! Some herons will fly south, some won't. Seems to me that they have to eat sooner or later, and they are generally fish eaters, but I do know they will eat other things. Sounds like you are well on your way to good photography. The biggest thing, is to make sure that you have fun with it, and release yourself to the camera.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Great pictures again. Always a joy to see what you have seen. I got a spread wing goose shot and one wing is lighter, is that normal? Got a red cardinal too but not close enough up to be too great but it is bright. Getting there though! I keep saying I am going to dig out my new camera with the zoom lens and I should do that tonight. Do the blue Herons fly south?

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, whonu! I'm so glad that you are enjoying the series. I plan to tie in what happens in 2012 with 2013 events.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Exactly, Klara. These wonderful birds are everywhere. And my understanding is that FL has many birds gracing the water and land.

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Billy. This is part of my routine, too. Going to the lake every day makes me want to tell people all about it, and the nice thing is, everyone wants to hear about it, too.

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 4 years ago from United States

      Great hub and always enjoyable. Thanks for sharing, aviannovice, enjoyed the photos very much. whonu

    • profile image

      klarawieck 4 years ago

      And to think it takes me thirty minutes to figure out the clam thing! The birds are looking healthy and beautiful. And the photos are looking great as well. Such variety! All I see from my balcony are pigeons, sea gulls, pelicans, and an osprey that likes to stir things up around here. We do have other birds like ibises, bluejays, mockingbirds, parrots, and even macaws . . . plus, many more . . . hmm! Come to think of it, we have lots of birds too. :-) And I love them all! Such beautiful creatures!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      This series has become a part of my Sunday routine. Great colors on the goldfinch.....beautiful pictures as always. Well done, Deb!

    Click to Rate This Article