Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Sunday January 27, 2013
Great Weather on Boomer Lake!
This past week has been simply fabulous for bird life. There is an awakening in the air, both with trees budding and birds returning to the area for spring. What? Did I say SPRING? The weather has been remarkably mild, and there are many birds coming around. Come sit for a bit and I’ll show you exactly what I now have on Boomer Lake. And yes, we could well have an early spring…I hope, for the birds’ sake.
The Dark-eyed Juncos have been enjoying themselves immensely. There are even a couple of them that follow me on the east side of the lake. These little birds are so endearing and move quickly. Now you see them, now you don’t.
I have also seen the Eastern Bluebird a couple of times this winter. I believe that there is at least one mated pair that I have been seeing. They usually stay closer to the Northern Reaches, but have been on the main part of the lake both times that I have seen them this winter.
Mourning Dove Nest
Here’s a nest of the Mourning Dove. Now that the leaves are off the trees, all the nests are visible and easy to spot. So I thought while I could do it, I would show you what some of these nests look like, so you are able to identify them on your own. Yes, this nest is made from tiny twigs, and nothing else.
These are both the male and female Purple Finches. They are good looking birds, eh? That raspberry swatch on the male brings so much color on these winter days, and when there is a flash of this color red, I know exactly where to look. They are not difficult to spot now.
The American Robins have been coming out of their neighborhoods, where it was so much more sheltered and warmer than on Boomer Lake. They appear to be looking for places to nest, and some of last year’s crop is among them. Many robins don’t travel far at all from where they were originally living.
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher's Nest
This is a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher’s nest, and was about eighteen inches from the ground. These are very comfortable homes for the little ones, lined with animal hair and cottonwood batting from the cottonwood tree, which is very plentiful in Oklahoma. As you can see, it was very well placed in a fork of a small tree.
The Buffleheads are still on the lake, and I can never resist getting photos of them, especially interesting ones like this. There are several more males on the lake than females, and with the white backs of their heads, they are very easy to spot.
This Song Sparrow was eating a few weed seeds on this grass that I happened to find him or her on. My expertise with brown birds(sparrows) isn’t very good, but I can recognize a few of them.
A fisherman that I met last year was very lucky on Wednesday afternoon. He let me get a few pictures of his catch, so I can have the opportunity to introduce you to channel catfish. They are very good eating and enjoyed by many people in Oklahoma.
The female Belted Kingfisher has found herself what appears to be a mate. They were frolicking yesterday, and he was doing a number of acrobatics for her. Here’s a couple of pictures to enjoy while he was on the move. He never stayed in one spot for very long, as he was trying so hard to impress her.
This is the White-crowned Sparrow. They can be rather loud with their “tseep” calls, and this one was out in the open and very easy to spot. They are also winter residents in this area, but they can be seen all year long here.
The American Crows were surveying their territory, a group of three juveniles. I hadn’t seen them for a couple of weeks, but they managed to surprise me.
American White Pelican
The American White Pelican was amid a crowd of Ring-billed Gulls, so I believe that this has been the same one that has been around so far this entire winter.
Has anyone else gotten the impression that we might be experiencing an early spring? Have you seen any other birds that really shouldn’t be here during the winter?
Keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding, and I will talk with you again next week.