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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Sunday April 7, 2013

Updated on April 7, 2013
Northern Mockingbird
Northern Mockingbird | Source

Can I Book you a Spot?

Two and a half days of rain this week brought up the water table about two feet, but another four feet wouldn’t hurt the lake a bit. There was a lot of concern as many sandbars had been showing, and the gulls actually had two places to stand around instead of one, which they really shouldn’t have had any. Birds have been visiting the Southern Cove once again, and things are getting back to normal.

Bonaparte's Gulls(black heads), with Ring-billed Gulls and American Coots
Bonaparte's Gulls(black heads), with Ring-billed Gulls and American Coots | Source

Bonaparte's Gulls

Birds having been coming around in droves, and migration is seriously underway. I have seen clouds of the black birds, and a good part of them are northbound. The Bonaparte’s Gulls have joined our Ring-billed Gulls, and I saw a handful of terns heading north earlier in the week. None of them stopped for a recharge, so I know that some will be by at a later date.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher | Source

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

The state bird, the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, has returned. I saw my first one yesterday. He is a beautiful specimen, perched on some tall grass, the epitome of grandeur. When our bird is home, only then is spring truly here.

Blue-winged Teal Pair
Blue-winged Teal Pair | Source

Blue-winged Teals

The Blue-winged Teals have also been here to visit, and they will be around for the season. The Northern Shoveler is also here, but I have not had the opportunity to get a good picture this season. Even though they are good sized ducks, I prefer to have a more fitting picture than a tiny speck. I spotted my first one in early March, all by his lonesome on Goose Island.

Eastern Bluebird
Eastern Bluebird | Source

Northern Reaches

Today I wandered up to the Northern Reaches, and birds were heard everywhere. I kept away from the rookery, but I did see a number of Great Blue Herons flying in that direction. If there are young, I don’t want to have the colony upset at this time. The Northern Cardinals, woodpeckers of all types, and this fine looking Eastern Bluebird are all doing well on the outskirts of the park. The water level is good, and if we get any more rain, it will certainly fill in the area.

Great Egret
Great Egret | Source

Great Egrets

There are at least three Great White Egrets, but they are skittish until they have been around for a while. By the time they were well-established last year, I could get within two feet of some of them.

Pied-billed Grebe Pair
Pied-billed Grebe Pair | Source

Pied-billed Grebes

The Pied-billed Grebes have finally paired, the Eastern Meadowlark is also home and singing heartily, the Great White Pelican is in flight on the lake, and the Double-Crested Cormorants are moving closer inland. The Bald Eagle has gotten his daily fish, so yes, Boomer Lake promises to be home to a good group of assorted birds again this year. We surely can’t ask for a lot more, as Goose Island is also doing well, and seems more populated than it was last season. There are pairings aplenty, and before you know it, the eggs will be lain and some young ones will be on the water showing themselves off and learning the ways of the world.

Life in the Fast Lane

The Mockingbirds are calling the Blue Jays simply to irritate them, and they are doing their mating dances already. The Cowbirds are also home and ready to leave eggs for unsuspecting mothers, so nature has been pulling at all the birds in a number of directions.

Let me hear what has been happening in your part of the country, and I’ll let you know more on spring next week. Keep your eyes on the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding to one and all!

Mallards in Puddle
Mallards in Puddle | Source
Red-winged Blackbird
Red-winged Blackbird | Source
Great White Pelican
Great White Pelican | Source
Bald Eagle with his Fish
Bald Eagle with his Fish | Source
Red-shouldered Hawk in Flight
Red-shouldered Hawk in Flight | Source

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

      Sorry to hear that, Sagar, but these things DO happen. Best of luck, my friend.

    • profile image

      Sagar 2 years ago

      New Guy Could I get some spice for Governors? XC and Wild?? I understand if Governor's didn't count for Wild, but it was delefitiny a wild and rad race. Can't walk today, and the shower punished me from all of my cuts.

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

      Hey, Dave! Thanks so much for stopping by. I love to share my lake with everyone, it's such a pleasure.

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 4 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Hi Deb as usual your report on your birds are full of interest . your photography is delightful and a credit to your love of birds. I love the scissor-tailed flycatcher. voted up

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

      Hey, Fred! Yes, that avatar was put up last night. My birding friend took that for me. She is a retired wedding photographer, who likes doing birds now. Oh, yes, my mockers are good, too, just as rambunctious and territorial as yours. They look so proud when surveying their territory, don't they? That is my newest lens, by the way!

    • profile image

      Ghost32 4 years ago

      Beautiful as always, Deb. I got hooked, pic by pic. Hopped over to admire your awesome avatar (hadn't noticed this one--it's either newish or I've been blindish in my tunnel vision guy way for a while). Looks like that camera lens is just about longer than you are!

      Then the mocker caught my eye. Since our resident northern mockinbird male is my favorite of ALL our local birds, I naturally had to go through the rest of the Hub, right?

      Voted Up and Lots More.

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

      Geese like their food, no doubt about that, but those that are umprinted could single you out and befriend you as special. Hang around the area, and your mocker will get closer. Don't move too fast around him, and at first, travel in a zig zag pattern toward him, but don't let him think that you have noticed him. It will take time, but when he knows that you are harmless, he will venture closer.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      What some great shots and that mockingbird, that is something else! I would have to frame it if it were mine. I saw a mocking bird today but he wouldn't even move up enough for me to get a shot of his whole body. Did have a goose giving me a pretty dance but I think he just wanted food. ^

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

      The cats need their healthy time in the weather. Tomorrow it begins getting cold again, with more rain, which we so badly need.

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      Beautiful to see all of the birds like this - happy and free and in their spring time mode - even my cats have sensed the milder air and sunnier days in the last week and enjoy sitting on our deck (sorry, their deck) and making imaginary menus out of all the birds that fly by and taunt them - love your pictures here - how can you not take a bad picture with beauty like this but then again you are a beautiful photographer and writer - sending you warm wishes from Mister Colin, Miss Tiffy and Mister Gabriel at lake erie time canada 6:35pm

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

      Hey, girishpuri! Thanks so much for visiting the lake. It is such a great place to be, as it is so full of bird life.

    • girishpuri profile image

      Girish puri 4 years ago from NCR , INDIA

      Beautiful Boomer lake, awesome photographs, perfect commentary. Voted up.

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

      LongTimeMother, I am glad to hear it, and soon hope to hear the reports on your birds!

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

      Hey, Alicia! The Bonaparte's are noisy little critters, so they announced themselves, but one must keep a watch on the gull supply. Sometimes a gem turns up. As always, thanks for reading and your continued support on Boomer Lake.

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      I love your beautiful photos, aviannovice. I have recently begun capturing photos of my native birds here in Australia. I have always raced outside when I hear a kookaburra and turned to admire our local birds as they fly by or eat gum nuts in the trees. but I rarely ever grabbed the camera.

      This year, finally, I am trying to keep a camera on hand. Voted up and more. Thank you.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I was happy to see the photo of the Bonaparte's gull. They are such attractive birds! Thanks for sharing all the photos and information, Deb. This is a very enjoyable hub, as always.

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

      Cris, I will always breathe something new into just about anything. It seems that we are expecting more rain, which really is a Godsend here. It has been so dry from last summer and we never recovered from it. Thusly, think about what spring will bring, and take a whiff of that crisp, chilly air. It will renew you, and perhaps bring forth a little something to make your day wonderful.

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 4 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      Oh wow! Isn't that mockingbird a beauty in itself? Great shots! I always get excited to see there's something new from you...makes me feel a lot closer to nature and learn more (from your hub).

      Can't wait to sit by the lake soon and catch these beauties. We are still experiencing some flurries here for the last couple of days and this evening we had a bit of refreshing rainfall.

      Your hub is always a breath of fresh air. Thanks.

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

      Thanks as always, Connie. The birds are having a ball, and we should have more much needed rain on the way.

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

      Cowbirds are parasitic birds, onegreenparachute. They dump off their eggs on an unsuspecting mother to raise, as well as sometimes take the eggs of another species. Cowbird eggs hatch quickly, so the new mother gets run ragged trying to feed the parasite.

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Deb, it's obvious you have mastered your new camera--the very first picture you posted should win an award! I love that mockingbird dancing in the air. Did you realize you are an artist with that camera? All the birds in flight are awesome; and it's so fun to see the birds splashing around taking baths this time of year. I am so glad that your area has received much-needed rain. I'm sure the birds are happier for it as well.

      That scissor-tail Flycatcher is awesome. Voted Up+++ Congratulations on this beautiful birding journal you have developed.

      Connie

    • onegreenparachute profile image

      Carol 4 years ago from Greenwood, B.C., Canada

      Most interesting as always Aviannovice. I wonder though, what is meant by: the Cowbirds are also home and ready to leave eggs for unsuspecting mothers?? Do they not look after their own eggs?

      Voted up and shared.

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

      Agreed, Baja! You never know, Hawk might just hang around. It happens.

    • baja2013 profile image

      Bajazid 4 years ago from Sarajevo, Bosnia

      Howk is free from yesterday evening (CET), kids were delighted with it! :)

      Protected and free, there is no better option for a wild animal.

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

      Glad you enjoyed your Sunday finery. It is always a joy to visit there.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Truly amazing pictures. Congratulations and thank you.

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

      It was pretty dark today, Billy, seems like it is threatening rain. Good work, Billy. I don't get my eggs at the store anymore. I get free range eggs from a friend.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      The Flycatcher is a cutie! What a great day for a visit to Boomer Lake. Thanks, Deb. You never disappoint. We got our chickens today...we are in the egg business. :)

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

      Don't let the camera get soaked. A light drizzle maybe, but not a lot of rain. Become one with you camera and your subjects. It isn't hard. You will recognize what the birds are saying, from pleasure the angst. I don't spend hours waiting for shots. I see them. I spend between 1-2 hours a day out there. That's it.

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Great shots Deb! And the commentary is superb too. I miss the mockingbirds and scissor-tailed flycatchers from back in my Texas days. That shot of the pelican in flight is realllllly good, as is the hawk and the eagle. The Mallards look almost like a painting. Makes me want to brave this rainy, windy day and head for the ponds again.

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

      Thanks, Baja. The cruelest thing they can do, even if they don't mean it, is to imprison a child of the wing.

    • baja2013 profile image

      Bajazid 4 years ago from Sarajevo, Bosnia

      Tomorrow morning, if he already didn't free him, I'll ask to make it. They are my good, old friend and granny will do that for me

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

      Hey, whonu! The rain caused rejoicing in the bird world, for they wanted the water at the lake as much as we did.

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

      Sounds like a great place, Nettlemere! Did you get any photos?

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

      baja, I hope that the hawk was freed, too. In this country, nobody is allowed to keep wild birds, except a licensed rehabilitator or a falconer. Unless hawk knows and is comfortable where he is, he will not eat what someone else as given him.

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 4 years ago from United States

      Beautiful photos, and I loved the hawk. Thanks for sharing this. whonu

    • Nettlemere profile image

      Nettlemere 4 years ago from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

      Great hawk flight shot and I love the bathing blackbird.

      I thought of you yesterday because I went birding at Martin Mere and saw three species for the first time - Black tailed Godwits , avocets and reed buntings as well as lots of other species.

      If you ever come to the UK you absolutely must visit Martin Mere!

    • baja2013 profile image

      Bajazid 4 years ago from Sarajevo, Bosnia

      Yesterday my friend's father caught a hawk a live. Hawk was trying to lift up a rabbit and didn't want to release it when granny came on the spot and put him into a bag, as he wanted to show this hawk to kids.

      For me the interesting part of the story was that hawk didn't want to attack and eat a chicken which granny put in the shed where hawk was captured.

      Hope they made him free till the end of this day.

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