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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Sunday December 29, 2013

Updated on January 2, 2014
Greater Flamingos with Young
Greater Flamingos with Young | Source

Field Notes

Greater Flamingo Advocacy

Kudos to this wonderful group of caring folks that are helping young flamingos. There is nothing more important than advocates like these for our wildlife.

Co-operative Breeding vs. Parasitism

Does co-operative breeding defeat brood parasitism? Here is information on what recent studies have learned in this process.

American Robin, first light
American Robin, first light | Source

Dream Interpretation

For fun, learn what it means to dream about birds:

Source

Audubon Canada Christmas Bird Count

The Christmas Bird Count is on! See what is happening in Canada for bird news, and learn more about those efforts.

Great Blue Heron
Great Blue Heron | Source

It has been both warm and cold this week. Yesterday was 61 degrees F, and today it has dropped to 29 degrees. Granted, there have been temperature fluctuations here and there, but this is beyond ridiculous. It has been so absurd, that the poor birds just don’t know what to do. Mornings have been quite chilly, even on those warmer days, so to me, it would be a bit of a deterrent for these birds to stick around.

Immature Black-crowned Night Heron
Immature Black-crowned Night Heron | Source

Immature Black-crowned Night Heron

On and off for the past week, I have seen an immature Black-crowned Night Heron. At first, I wasn’t sure which heron it was, and yesterday morning with the bird being fully in view, I solved the mystery quite easily. I’m rather surprised that this youngster didn’t choose to travel a little further south, but with these irruptive years, odd things tend to happen. Even so, I am pleased that this bird chose to stop at the lake so that you’d be able to see what a first year looks like. The eyes help give it away.

Beaver
Beaver | Source

The Beaver

Even though the water level in the Southern Cove is quite high, at least one beaver is still in the area. I saw evidence of this mammal over the holiday, as a tree had been felled, but due to the high water, I thought that the beaver moved elsewhere, especially since the tree was in a non-customary locale. Not only did I notice the beaver, but Great Blue Heron did, as well. Heron seemed a bit disturbed about the presence of the beaver, as it would be another mouth in search of fish, but our friend moved on rather quickly. Personally, I’m glad that there was no battle between the two.

Canvasbacks
Canvasbacks | Source

Canvasbacks

The Canvasbacks are still sharing space with the Buffleheads and Mallards. During the mornings there has been a slight crust of ice on the water, and the ducks seem to gravitate toward this area. I was in the proper place, and caught these gorgeous Canvasbacks taking off from the water, which is my first group this year. What a bonus. I am still awaiting the Gadwalls and Green-winged Teals. Here’s hoping that both make an appearance soon.

Bewick's Wren
Bewick's Wren | Source

Bewick's Wren

Another wonderful find was the lovely Bewick’s Wren yesterday morning. I have been hearing a song that I had never heard before for the past few days, and I was pleased to find that my search was over. These wrens tend to move quite rapidly, and my good fortune allowed this shot. These birds are common to the area, and are the only wrens that are found in all seasons.

Northern Mockingbird
Northern Mockingbird | Source

Northern Mockingbird

Our one diehard Northern Mockingbirds remains for the season. It has been attempting to get the Blue Jay to respond to the area, which has happened once or twice. Honestly, I would feel so much better to know that I am capable of getting a shot or two of this bird at the lake. Hopefully, it will occur this winter, as there are still berries on the trees, just waiting for the jays to come and eat them. I suppose that I could cheat and put up some suet or place a few peanuts in strategic locations, but I really wouldn’t feel right about staging photos. Let’s see if they will be at the lake while I am.

Since all good things eventually come to an end, I will bid you goodbye until the next time that we meet next year. Keep your head in the clouds and your eyes to the ground. Happy birding, and here’s to finding that elusive winter avian that will put a feather in your cap.

Canvasbacks(male on left)
Canvasbacks(male on left) | Source
Great Blue Heron Strikes
Great Blue Heron Strikes | Source
Sunrise at Boomer Lake
Sunrise at Boomer Lake | Source
Northern Mockingbird
Northern Mockingbird | Source

Boomer Lake

© 2013 Deb Hirt

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    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Les Trois Chenes, the moment I arrive, the performances begin, seriously. I never have to wait.

    • Les Trois Chenes profile image

      Les Trois Chenes 3 years ago from Videix, Limousin, South West France

      Lovely hub and fabulous photos. I've been trying for ages to photograph the robin that eats the spindle berries from the bush outside my kitchen door. Impossible! Given up. You must have the patience of a saint.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Meldz! Plenty of fish and other things for everyone!

    • profile image

      ignugent17 3 years ago

      I am glad that there is no battle between the beaver and the great blue heron. They must be giving each other a space. Enjoyed your pictures. :-)

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks for your bird report, Mel. Maine seems to have plenty of Redheads, too.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 3 years ago from San Diego California

      You got some really stunning photos on this one, not that you don't always. I especially liked the Bewick's wren and the Mocker in winter.

      Black-Crowned night herons are a pretty common sight here in San Diego, but I have yet to see a Canvasback, although I have seen a couple of its close cousin, the Redhead. Send a couple of your Canvasback our way. No Green-winged or Cinnamon Teal here yet either.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Anna. Weather fluctuations is what it is all about with global warming, for everything is topsy-turvy. Glad you liked the sunrise...

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

      That really is a wide temperature range! Brilliant photographs as always and I thought the sunrise one was really beautiful.

      I love how you wait for the natural photos and wouldn't stage them.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, CC! It doesn't hurt when you work with birds at a rescue organization. The more you work with them, the more you learn. Thanks for visiting.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 3 years ago from Western NC

      I enjoyed reading your field notes. You have a way with words that make me feel like you're extraordinarily connected to our avian friends - who are nothing short of amazing. Great to see you! HUGS!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, rdsparrowriter, and a happy new year to you, too. Glad that you like the pictures, as there are more to come.

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 3 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      Love every minute I spent on this hub reading and viewing all the lovely scenes...simply beautiful and very informative.

      Great hub as always!

    • rdsparrowriter profile image

      rdsparrowriter 3 years ago

      Oh wow Deb !! I really enjoy reading and seeing your lovely pictures :) They are so beautiful :) I wish you a blessed new year!!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Happy New Year to you, too, Nell. Yes, my friend, strange things are certainly on the horizon. May we all manage to get through them in one piece.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      What a great shot of the blue Heron! and all the other photos too! Yes the weather is pretty strange all over the place, and to drop like that must cause the birds some problems. Seeing a beaver was really great though, I would love to see one. Great post as always! Happy New Year Deb!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Aha! I just learned that you call this the buff-bellied, and we call it the American Pipit. Amazing how we can share this little songbird, eh?

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 3 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Another enjoyable visit , as usual. Just for your information Deb, we have had a sighting of the Buff bellied pipit in Cheshire {first time ever, on the 2nd of January}. Cheshire is the most southern county of north west England.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Eddy! Thanks for hanging out at the lake and the votes.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      How wonderful to be back with you on Boomer Lake once again Deb;voted up as always.

      Eddy.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      ChitrangadaSharan, Happy New Year to you, too. Glad that you enjoyed this edition, and of course, I will see you again next year.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 3 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Beautiful hub with so much information and lovely pictures!

      The Flamingos look so lovely!

      Great hub as always! Happy New Year 2014!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Happy New Year, Alicia. Looking forward to new discoveries and the new year unfolds.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Connie! Yes, it certainly was a thrilling week. I am keeping my eyes open for more unusual visitors.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Kevin! The lake is teeming with lots of great characters in the story. I just wonder who I might encounter next.

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 3 years ago from Minnesota

      An incredibly useful and informative hub that was so much fun to read. Love the photo's too. I find mockingbird's very intriguing and beautiful.Thanks for a great adventure today through your hub.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      What a dramatic temperature change at Boomer Lake! I'm sure it's confusing humans as well as birds. Thanks for another interesting report about the lake and for sharing the bird news, Deb. Happy New Year!

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 3 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Beautiful as always, Deb! Loved the Bewick's Wren; I can imagine your joy at finding this little guy. The immature Night Heron must have been a nice surprise as well. Awesome, my friend ;) Connie

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      This was very beautiful, and also interesting Deb. I loved the shot of the Greater Flamingos (feeding?) with young - if I did not know that they were alive, I would think that was a garden prop! That cuckoo story reminds me of the Brown-headed Cowbird that we have here.

      When I saw that beaver racing through the water, I pictured him coming to ice and wondered if he would hit it and get a headache or just chew through it. LOL

      Great job - again!

      Kevin

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      The funny thing is, Leslie, birds are made for the weather that they safe usually in at any given time. Most of them have oils in their feathers to ward off the cold and water sway from the skin. Oil spills can be detrimental to their natural oils, and breach their natural immunity to these things. That's why it is such a crime when oil ends up in our water.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 3 years ago

      i feel sooo sorry for birds that stick around in canada for the winter...brrrrrrr...

      Gorgeous pics as always, Deb.

      I can almost sense your inner peace as wait patiently to click each photo..

      Hugs and Happy new Year my friend! I have a feeling it's gonna be a good one!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      My Cook Book, you are so welcome. Here's to the beginning of another year.

    • My Cook Book profile image

      Dil Vil 3 years ago from India

      The pics are so gorgeous... Like your hub, good one. Thank you for sharing.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Chris, I really don't wait that long. It only took three minutes.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      That's just the juvenile.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 3 years ago from St. Louis, MO until the end of June, 2017

      Hi Deb, the Bewick's Wren was a fine photo. I appreciate your willingness to wait for the shots that come naturally. Thanks for the visit to the lake.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      BTW I had never seen a Black-crowned Night Heron; he is something else!

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I got lucky, today, Billy. It was only an eight hour workday!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I took a chance and went to the lake today in hopes that you would be there. You didn't disappoint me. Thanks for the beautiful journey.

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Jackie! One of these days, I will get my own flamingo pics. Glad that you liked the residents this week.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Just gorgeous as always! The flamingo pictures reminded me though that I have some flamingo pictures, several in fact! Went to a huge zoo last spring and they were pinned up. I can take pictures of those! lol

    • aviannovice profile image
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      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Faith Reaper! Glad that you enjoyed all the kids on the block, and even the new ones. Here's to a new year of new birds and old friends.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Awesome, beautiful and informative as always dear Deb! What a lovely sunrise photo there at Boomer Lake, and that last photo of the Northern Mockingbird is gorgeous. Well ... all of your photos are amazing. Yes, we have been having crazy up and down weather too, and I am sure the poor birds truly do not know what to do!

      Up and more and sharing.

      Happy New Year to you dear Deb, and I hope another year of exciting bird sightings for you to share with all of us!

      Blessings, Faith Reaper