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

Updated on March 7, 2013
Great Blue Heron
Great Blue Heron | Source

A Scent of Spring is in the AIr

Once again, I welcome you to my neck of the country. Someone mentioned yesterday that they haven’t been to the lake, as nothing seems to be there. I consider myself lucky, as nearly every time I go out, I always manage to see something that knocks my socks off, as my friend, Jeannie says. Smiling as I think about that phrase, have I got a few things that will do the same thing for you this week.

The new camera is getting a little easier to use, though I still tend to experience a few problems here-and-there, but it is just the lack of experience. So, without further adieu, I bring you another edition of Boomer Lake’s events. It surprises me to stop and think that I have been visiting the lake for almost a year now, and this is my third camera.

Great Blue Heron has been around all year, and at the end of the light on Thursday, he gave me some wonderful things to see. Yes, he got his fish, and this is the first time that I have been able to get several shots of the process from start to finish. I call this series, “Now You See It, Now You Don’t.”

Greater Scaup
Greater Scaup | Source
Ruddy Duck
Ruddy Duck | Source

Greater Scaups and Ruddy Ducks

The Greater Scaups are still on the lake, as are the Ruddy Ducks, both beautiful birds. Ducks are one of my all-time favorites, mostly because they are so plentiful and have so many different kinds. If you get the opportunity to look them over fairly frequently, it becomes so much easier to differentiate them. You can even tell what they might be by their flight patterns and behaviors, when it is hard to see them.

Red-Shouldered Hawk
Red-Shouldered Hawk | Source

Red-Shouldered Hawk

The Red-Shouldered Hawk was around again yesterday. The light wasn’t quite where I wanted to have it, but now it is a little easier to manipulate it. He hopped on the ground once, and I thought for sure that he had some prey, but I didn’t see anything. Sooner or later, I’ll be lucky enough to catch one of the hawks having a little snack.

Double-Crested Cormorant
Double-Crested Cormorant | Source

Double-Crested Cormorants

The Double-Crested Cormorants have returned for the cooler weather, and I might see one or two of them occasionally. Last summer, they were here in droves, and I recall getting ten or so of them in one shot.

Male Bufflehead(left) and female(right)
Male Bufflehead(left) and female(right) | Source


This Bufflehead pair lives rather close to the shoreline, which is unusual, for ducks like these tend to spend the night in the center of the lake to keep away from predators. However, there is a couple of Mallard pairs in the same vicinity, so they could easily be another set of eyes and ears to help watch for predators.

First Year American Robin
First Year American Robin | Source

American Robin

Here’s a picture of a first-year American Robin. When I saw this bird, I just had to get a photo, so you’ll all have an idea on what a first-year looks like. They’re not too different, just a little more white than an adult, but still the same bird. This one is a real beauty.

Even though it has been between 27 and 32 degrees F most early mornings with a good amount of wind, it has been rather cool. It has been worth those mornings to get shots like these, and I can always warm myself up again at home once I get a bit of coffee in me. What’s an hour of cold these days, when spring is just around the corner? Keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds until next time. Happy birding!

Red-winged Blackbird
Red-winged Blackbird | Source
Mallard pair--male on right, female on left
Mallard pair--male on right, female on left | Source
Canada Geese Flying in Tandem
Canada Geese Flying in Tandem | Source


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    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      D.A.L., the birds are really showing their stuff now, as this is all a prelude to breeding. t as been raining here for a couple of days now, which we need so badly. But when the sun comes out again, I shall be back on the lake looking for notes of honorable mention. Glad that you enjoy the column.

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 5 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Hi Deb, your camera is certainly paying dividends these are great shots. Your writing will surely inspire all those who love nature to get out there and have their 'socks knocked off'. Thank you for sharing.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Mycee! Birds can be so entertaining. I have gotten some interesting and comical photos over the past year. You never know what these characters might do to react to something.

    • unknown spy profile image

      IAmForbidden 5 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

      Hello Deb!! It's so nice to see those great and lovely photos of different birds. I like it because they are so real and alive..i never seen so many birds before.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Meldz! Glad that you enjoyed that series. I will be having a few more interesting shots on this coming Sunday's issue, too.

    • profile image

      ignugent17 5 years ago

      Wow such magnificent pictures! I enjoy looking at the Great Blue Heron having its meal.

      Thanks for sharing. :-)

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Peg! That is Buddy, and he loves to be photographed. He was around all winter, and sometimes when he is bored, he will just fly along with me.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Joanne! Thanks for stopping by and enjoying the events on the lake. It will only get better as the weather gets warmer.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Eddy! I can't wait to see your wonderful birds, too. It is always exciting to see b irds from other countries, and maybe one day I will get to see them, as well.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Connie! It is a lot of fun, and I just never know what is going to happen with these guys next. I hope today's batch came out well...

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Alicia! I am having so much I always do when I am near my birds.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Bumpsysmum! I love hanging out with the birds, and before you know it, they will be coming in droves.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Glad to hear that your birds are talking spring. I do so love my ducks.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      It wasn't too bad, Jackie. I love being at the right place at the right time.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Thanks, Billy. Springlike days are always good. Yesterday was great here, as well as today, but quite windy. It will be getting better and better.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 5 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      These are stunning shots, Deb. I love the Blue Heron with the time elapsed views of his catch. They are great fish catchers. Wonderful job.

    • profile image

      Joanne M Olivieri 5 years ago

      Ah, now this is my kinda hub. Love the bird life and these shots are amazing. You captured such great detail on the blue heron and the red shouldered hawk is fantastic. I just love him. This is why one of my favorite spots is the lake. To see all of these birds is such a treat. Thanks so much for sharing. Voted up!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      Another wonderful gem Deb; I love this series !!! One day we noticed a Woodpecker on our bird table for the first time ever !!!I am sure the are very shy birds which is why I was over the moon to spot one. I also have a Mistle Thrush who hops quite near to my feet now..I shan't mention any more because I am in the midst of creatine a hub on them all. Thank you so much again Deb for this series ;you are indeed so very inspiring.

      I vote up,across and share.


    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 5 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Deb, your images are absolutely AWESOME! I loved them all. But I especially loved the close up of the red shouldered hawk and the red wing blackbird. Fascinating to see all the detail of their colors, beaks, feathers, etc. Wonderful job that I have voted way Up+

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Your photos are always enjoyable, Deb, but I can see that you're getting used to your new camera! You have the wonderful ability to photograph birds in very interesting poses. Thanks for your patience and great observation skills.

    • Bumpsysmum profile image

      Bumpsysmum 5 years ago from Cambridgeshire

      Some of these pics are simply stunning. The Blue Heron catching the fish and the two geese together in particular. Yet another fantastic work of literary and photographic art, well put together.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 5 years ago from San Francisco

      The picture of the 2 ducks, to me, is perfect! In SF the birds. song-wise, are entering spring mode.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 5 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Oh that blue heron, what am awkward position! I love it, you really caught a moment there!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      The red-winged blackbird is a beauty, and you already know how I feel about the hawk...great pictures my friend. We had an exceptional day here, the first day that felt like spring might happen.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Ah, Chris, I do envy you. Perhaps when the snow melts, you will still be able to wander out there to see the young ones. When people hunt in the backwoods of Maine, they don't take a bath/shower for a few days, as our scent tends to startle the animals and make them run. As a child, I used to feed them, and they would let me close enough to touch their rough fur.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Angelo! How are you? I have missed seeing you, and hope that you are well. Nothing like the wonderful birds to brighten our lives!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Hey, Jim! It sure had been a fantastic week, without a doubt. You never know what is going to happen out there. A short time ago, I got the Red-shouldererd Hawk in flight. All the gulls fled from their usual spot, due to its presence.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Oh, absolutely, head out to the bay and enjoy yourself. There is nothing like the wonders of nature and sky to get the creative juices flowing!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Oh, Nettlemere, how nice to see a familiar bird to you. Was it a first year bird, too? Even the common birds can be so wonderful bursting into song and enjoying the day.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 5 years ago from Missoula, Montana at least until August 2018

      Deb, I love every shot you took and every description you provided. The GBH was spectacular and the shots, crystal clear. I spent the afternoon sneaking through the forest trying to get close to the white tail dear bedding grounds near a very secluded lake, but it is impossible to sneak up on those creatures in the crusty snow. Wonderful job once again Deb.

    • Angelo52 profile image

      Angelo52 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Beautiful photos, great commentary. Loved the Blue Heron sequence as I got to meet one up close. The one I met perched in a tree. Never saw him stalk or fish. Sharing.

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 5 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Great pics Deb, nice of that heron to pose for you! These hubs are "trip" for all of us!

    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 5 years ago from United States

      Two of your shots (at least) blew me away--the geese in tandem and the redwing blackbird. Wonderful! You're inspiring me to head out to the bay early early one weekend morning to bird watch.

    • Nettlemere profile image

      Nettlemere 5 years ago from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

      Love the redwinged blackbird bursting into song and interesting to see the young American robin. Talking of things knocking your socks off, mine were knocked by a rather common bird this week. It was a chaffinch, but with an greater expanse of pink on its chest then usual singing lustily against a bright blue sky - stunning.


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