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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Sunday February 3, 2013

Updated on February 9, 2013
Ring-billed Gulls, Canada Goose, and Mallard
Ring-billed Gulls, Canada Goose, and Mallard | Source

We Will Be Seeing an Early Spring!

This has been a terrific week, and I'm sure that you will notice something different here. Even though the mornings have been crisp, I had mentioned last week that I was under the impression that we were going to have an early spring. Then Puxatawny Phil, the groundhog from the Philadelphia area, agreed with me. I can’t take all the credit for my prediction, as the birds “told” me. One must learn to listen with their eyes instead of their ears, and birds will direct one accordingly. They really are very accommodating little creatures.

Great Blue Heron
Great Blue Heron | Source

The Northern Reaches

My friend, Jeannie, and I managed to get together last Sunday and spent about three hours together. We began on the west side of the lake getting a few pictures and even had high hopes of seeing where the eagle’s nest might be, but we got sidetracked, since there wasn’t any place to park in that area.

We also wandered around the Northern Reaches, as much of the lake has dried up there. We made a crossing and found a rookery where the Great Blue Herons have been keeping themselves. So there really was a winter habitat for our group. We saw close to eight of them, and they were so irritated with us, they took to several trees for safety.

Belted Kingfisher in Flight
Belted Kingfisher in Flight | Source

Belted Kingfisher

The afternoons have been relatively nice and sometimes the birds are out, and sometimes they are not. The cool mornings have brought a few ducks our way, and the pair of Belted Kingfishers have been enjoying themselves, too. They are noisy little buggers, so if they are around, they will be heard, first.

American Robin
American Robin | Source

The Spring Cast is On the Way Home

Ducks, geese, and gulls have been most of the ones that are out, and I might make mention that an American Robin was in the heart of the park today, not just on the outskirts. The Mourning and Eurasian Collared Doves are getting ready for spring, too. For the first time today, I was greeted by a few Red-winged Blackbirds. I actually saw a few last week, but they were hanging around with other black birds. It is official, as they were perching on their usual reeds on the lake this morning. It’s almost like I was being greeted by old friends.

Canvasbacks | Source


Several Canvasbacks were on the lake today, as well, and our Bufflehead count seems to be diminishing.

Ring-billed Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls | Source

It Really is Still Winter!

It has not been hard to shift from winter to spring mode, but we will all have to beware Old Man Winter. He will surely rear his ugly head and give a few blasts of the arctic-like air, just to remind us that we cannot count our chickens before they are hatched.

So let me just say that the icicles won’t be hanging off my nose much longer in the mornings. Remember to keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding until next week, and don’t take any wooden nickels from the God of Winter.

Canada Goose in Flight
Canada Goose in Flight | Source
Ring-billed Gulls
Ring-billed Gulls | Source


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    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I do so enjoy the gulls. I grew up with gulls and terns in Maine, so the seabirds always bring a smile to me.

    • precy anza profile image

      precy anza 5 years ago from USA

      Seeing those gulls in flight reminds me of the game I used to play before :) Beautiful photos and I always enjoy them! That would be a treat if you spotted a nest! ^-^'

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Chris! Michigan will not have an early spring, they never do, you might as well be in Canada.. Yes, the kingfisher was flying, he bounced off the water. Glad that you liked the column. I know that you've been busy.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 5 years ago from Missoula, Montana through August 2018

      What is all this talk about winter moving into spring? I have two feet of snow in my yard and it was 3 degrees a couple of mornings ago:) I certainly hope your predictions reach as far as northern Michigan. Deb, you got a nice shot of the Kingfisher, but he was flying, not hovering, right? You will get your photo. This was a very enjoyable hub, sorry I'm so late getting over here.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I dunno, Jackie...I'd like to hear a bit about your birds. Take another look at this edition. I changed a few pictures. get a load of the Belted Kingfisher bounding off the water and the larger goose in flight.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 5 years ago from The Beautiful South

      No, I like taking the pictures but I won't be doing any stories on it, you do a fine job for us all on this!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Jackie, I heard about the impending storm, sounds pretty serious. I'll bet your pics are just fine! Maybe you can do a story.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 5 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Winter is hitting the east coast tonight! At least 2 feet in some places. Sure hope it turns out OK.

      Love your trip sharing. I saw a blue heron yesterday but I don't think it is the same one, it looks skinnier and wings not as broad. Haven't downloaded my pictures yet, don't think I got any great ones though except of a blood red camilla tree full of blooms. Voting up as always!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks as always, Mel. I promise that the pictures will improve. I'm just getting used to a new camera.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Deb, I know what you mean about taking notice of the birds to see if Spring is on the way, I tend to go by the seagulls here, they come inland approx 1st november and are beginning to congregate outside again as if they are getting ready to go back, thank goodness for that! I always love your photos and info, and its nice to know the red wing blackbirds are on their way, wonderful as always, nell

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Sure, M. I will fix the pictures from my new camera very soon, now that I know how.

    • profile image

      ignugent17 5 years ago

      Wow! You got a picture of a Belted kingfisher hovering the water. That is so cool. Thanks for sharing.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Alicia! It was almost 70 here today, and the birds have been pairing up, no question about that.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      It feels like spring is arriving where I live, just as it is at Boomer Lake. I'm enjoying learning about how the bird population and their behavior change as the seasons progress, Deb.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Highland Terrier. The birds have chosen mates, or at least a good part of them. May luck be with them, and I hope we have a wonderful crop of fledglings.

    • Highland Terrier profile image

      Highland Terrier 5 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Nice to see some of the surrounding area. I hope the birds don't start breeding too soon,last year the whole first batch of fledging where wipe out because the weather turned so bad over here.

      Keep up the good work.


    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Agreed, Connie. It's about time we have an early spring. You'll hear no complaints from a lot of people, including me.

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 5 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Deb, my Dad always used to say that the redwings were the real harbingers of spring. We know that when they arrive, spring has officially sprung. My woodpeckers and finches are actually mate feeding already, so I'm sure spring isn't far off. I'm also sure winter as always will be hard-pressed to give up easily!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Beckie, when I was at the lake today, it was between 64-66! Yes, we'll have a few memories of winter, but not many!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Whoinu, you are so right about needing rain. The Southern Cove off the lake is still as dry as a bone.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      The pictures WILL get better, Martin. I used my new DSLR, which is quite a step up from what I had.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      The weather has been absolutely crazy over the past twenty years, and it probably has to do with the breach of the ozone layer. I would be interested in seeing your bird, Jim.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 5 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Those Great Blue Herons are some of my favorite. They are such a majestic species. I can not tell you how wonderful it is to follow you throughout the seasons at Boomer Lake. It is a joy to know that, although Winter will still poke at us a few more times, my favorite season is on its way! Spring will be sprung!

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 5 years ago from United States

      We all need some Spring weather and going out to the lake is a great way of picking up your spirits. Hope we have some rain this year. whonu

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 5 years ago from San Francisco

      I knew I forgot something! It did take me over 2 hours. But here I am to enjoy the sights.

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 5 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Wonderul hub and good news about Spring as well. On a dog walk in the neighborhood the other day, I saw at least 20 Robins in one front yard. We were at the Ponds on Saturday and Anne got great pics of the Great Blue Heron and an Egret, and a little bird (unid'd so far). I may publish the really good pic she got and ask for help! It looked like the ducks and geese were getting ready for the nesting season out there.

      But, in March, 1968, the Winter before I came here, there was a three foot snow storm that paralyzed this moderate city.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Anytime, Billy. Forgive the photos...I have a new camera to get used to with all the bells and whistles.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      It would appear our winter is over too. Fifty degrees and mild here, and the birds are out in full force around here. I can't really say I'm going to miss winter this year. I need sunshine!

      Thanks for taking me to the lake again; it's always a pleasure.


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