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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Sunday April 14, 2013

Updated on April 15, 2013
Buffleheads in Flight
Buffleheads in Flight | Source

Punxsutawney Phil Knows for Sure

I hate to say it, but the groundhog was right. There really was six more weeks of winter. The birds were fooled, and so was I. That will sure teach me a lesson. All over the country this week, we have been having cold weather, and I was told today that more of it is on the way.

Great White Pelican with Northern Shovelers
Great White Pelican with Northern Shovelers | Source
Red Eared Sliders
Red Eared Sliders | Source

Northern Shovelers, Pelicans, and Turtles

Even the birds are two weeks behind. Two weeks earlier, I saw Northern Shovelers, but by the same token, I wasn’t observing pelicans all winter, either. The red eared slider turtles have been out on sunny days, and their barometers really don’t seem to care one way or the other if it is warm one day and cool the next. They will just not show their faces if the air temperature is cooler than the water. It is that simple for them.

Butterflies at Large

Butterflies have been out on warm days, and I still am trying to capture them on something pretty, especially if they will stay still long enough. We’re still waiting for the monarchs, viceroys, and admirals, but once the temperatures remain constant, I believe that they will, too.

Brown Thrasher
Brown Thrasher | Source
Pied-billed Grebes
Pied-billed Grebes | Source

Brown Thrasher

The Brown Thrasher has also returned, the Pied-billed Grebes are finally paired, and the Northern Shovelers were out on one day, perhaps fifty of them on Goose Island. They kept to themselves on the lower tier, so the geese that were on the upper tier left them alone. Even the pelican is being ignored, but I’m surprised that they stayed as long as they did with the constant noise coming from the geese.

Bufflehead Mating Ritual
Bufflehead Mating Ritual | Source

Buffleheads are Mating!

I observed a real treat a couple of days ago. The Buffleheads are actively mating on Boomer Lake, so I spent a good hour observing and photographing. I wanted to share a couple of the photos with you today, but my intention is to update my story on The Beautiful Little Bufflehead. Several more pictures will end up going with that piece on Tuesday, at the latest.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher | Source

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

The Scissor-tailed Flycatcher really hasn’t been too happy with the fluctuations in weather, so he only tends to appear on the warmest of days. Here’s one of the pictures that I happened to get on one of those days, so now all can be aware that the state bird of Oklahoma has found his way home. The females should be back in about a week or so, as the males arrive first to choose their territory and then a mate.

Laughing Gulls
Laughing Gulls | Source

Laughing Gulls

Laughing Gulls have been in the area for several days now in greater numbers than before. I was told that gulls are never in Oklahoma this late in the year. It seemed that they were gone a lot sooner last year, so it’s good that my suspicions were actually confirmed.

Purple Martin Pair
Purple Martin Pair | Source
Great Tailed Grackle in Flight
Great Tailed Grackle in Flight | Source

Birding in Oklahoma

My friend, Jeannie, and I had a wonderful outing at the lake today, but we were actually on a couple of missions. The first, was to help me set up my new lens for my camera on a beefier tripod. This unit will not have the easy maneuverability of the last setup, but I will only be using it on sunny days. On cloudy days, I will still have to use the other lens, as it has more capabilities for the introduction of light.

The second mission was trying to find the Bald Eagle’s nest in this area. We didn’t have any luck on where I suspected that it was located, but we did speak to a couple of college students that were seeking it, as well. We were given a couple of leads that we will follow up on, so perhaps I’ll have more news for you on that next week.

Canada Goslings
Canada Goslings | Source

Canada Goslings are Here

Also today, while at the lake much earlier, I saw what appears to be the first goslings of the season. They are two weeks later than last year, but they are here. Take a gander at this beautiful brood, and these will surely tell you that spring really is here.

In the meantime, keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding!

Stealth Mallard
Stealth Mallard | Source
Double-Crested Cormorants
Double-Crested Cormorants | Source
Turkey Vulture
Turkey Vulture | Source
Red-winged Hawk in Flight
Red-winged Hawk in Flight | Source

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    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thank you, Maggyy. Glad to hear that you're enjoying the series. There's a lot to see, so do keep reading.

    • profile image

      Maggyy 2 years ago

      I read that this morning befroe I read this post and didn't realize until half way through this one that it was one and the same writer. Great job! It's a great site! Oh, and one other thing you were both homeschooled?? That's cool! I homeschool my kids too! Love it!

    • profile image

      Maggyy 2 years ago

      I read that this morning befroe I read this post and didn't realize until half way through this one that it was one and the same writer. Great job! It's a great site! Oh, and one other thing you were both homeschooled?? That's cool! I homeschool my kids too! Love it!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      You are very welcome, precy anza. It makes me feel like we're all visiting at the lake.

    • precy anza profile image

      precy anza 4 years ago from San Diego

      Awesome! Love that hawk in flight. Those goslings are so cute ^-^' Well, I find every baby birds and animals cute :D Thanks for always sharing us your photos :)

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Nell! This is the wackiest weather that I have ever seen. I'm sure that it will calm down soon, and things will behave in a normal manner.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi Deb, yes the birds over here are getting confused to I think, our weather is the same as yours and its only now that the heat is coming on. Great photos as always, and I hope your weather starts to warm up a bit now for all the baby birds on their way, nell

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Highland Terrier! I practice taking pictures nearly every day. I'm trying hard to get better, and it really will happen, sooner or later. There is a lot to it. Thanks for your encouragement.

    • Highland Terrier profile image

      Highland Terrier 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      You just keep getting better and better, fantastic pictures.

      voted up +

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      No, Suhail. Most of the birds around here are used to me. I'm very fortunate.

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 4 years ago from Mississauga, ON

      Hi Deb,

      Do you work from a hide?

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Alicia! I had the new lens out today, so lets hope that things are even better for next week's column.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Vacation Trip! This is my hobby, birds and photography It was great to see you here, and I'm so glad that you enjoyed my little neighborhood.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Anna! I consider myself so lucky when I am able to get these birds in flight, and their beauty amazes me every day.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Connie! Glad that you enjoyed the "new kids on the block." I love seeing the first new group, as it gives me such hope for the new crop of youngsters. Birds always take me back to my childhood, which could be why I enjoy seeing them so much. Maybe I just refuse to grow up!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      It's so interesting to see photos of new birds in your weekly reports, Deb. I love the close-up photos.

    • Vacation Trip profile image

      Susan 4 years ago from India

      Great hub Deb. The Picture are simply awesome. Voted up and thanks for sharing.

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 4 years ago from Scotland

      You bring nature close to the reader and explain it really well. It is almost like being taken to the lake, through your words and pictures.

      The pictures are amazing, the Red-winged Hawk looks so close. Great hub!

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Deb, you have done yourself proud yet again! Love the birds in flight, especially the turkey vulture and the hawk. Takes me back to my childhood when turkey vultures swirled around in thermals on lazy summer days. Those little yellow goslings are sure cute! Voted Up Across the Board. Great work my friend,

      Connie

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Missed seeing you, Beckie, and I am so happy that you have returned from the recesses of the cold. I have got to tell you, I don't miss shoveling snow one bit. It does happen here, but very rarely, I hear.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Jim! No telling what we might be in for this year, Jim. It seems like all the "rules" have been broken already, naturewise, so I suppose that we'll just sit back, and see what there is in store for us.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      I am not the least bit surprised at Punxsutawney Phil, considering the cold snap that blew into my neck of the woods as well. I missed these adventures at Boomer Lake with you and am so happy to be enjoying them again.

      Great treat for me Deb!

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Wonderful hub Deb! So nice to see the goslings already. The hawk in flight is a great shot too. I love the "stealth mallard." I hope to see more buffleheads here too. Laughing gulls are new species to me. Great work Deb!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Bill! Are you about two weeks behind schedule as well? I'm sure that things will be heading in a normal direction soon, but it is a little unsettling.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hope to see some of those great butterflies soon, Billy. Yes, the thrashers are good looking birds, and some of the old favorites are still around. I hope to see some new birds this year, I hope.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I don't know what the goose was doing, Jackie. They are doing all kinds of things around here, so it could mean anything. It has been a strange spring for them here. Can't wait to see some of your pictures this year.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, whonu! It sure was a busy week at the lake, even with a couple of days of rain. With any luck, we'll manage to get another couple of feet of rain, and things will green up even more. Glad to have you along on the journey!

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Deb. What a variety of birds this week, just amazing. Great photos. We are still waiting for spring here. It's certainly not like last year when spring came early.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      The Brown Thrashers are great looking birds. The Monarchs are still on their way from Mexico, or at least they were a couple days ago. Great pictures, Deb, and yes, winter is still here. :)

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Oh, that red winged hawk...beautiful. You have a great variety at your lake! We don't have any baby ducks, etc yet so you are doing good there. I got some good butterfly and hummingbird moth pictures last year and hope to do better this year. I had a goose come up to me last week and keep stretching its neck in odd angles like a snake and then he or she (I have no idea!) went on by. What that was all about I haven't the foggiest.

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 4 years ago from United States

      Thanks for sharing these nice pictures and the fine commentary, my friend. whonu

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