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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Sunday September 1, 2013

Updated on September 4, 2013
Baikal Teal
Baikal Teal | Source

Field Notes

I was alerted to the existence of the British Trust for Ornithology, a non-profit organization, currently discussing the fall migration of birds moving across the North Sea. Our British friends had a number of scarce and rare migrants come into view, which has been making bird watching for them more than astounding. Get more information on the site:

Baikal Teal Sighting

For American Birding Association rare bird news, the Baikal Teal of eastern Russia and eastern Asia has been sighted in where of all places? Alaska! Get the full story at

Project Puffin

According to Audubon, Project Puffin is saving seabirds across the world with wooden carvings. How, you ask? Steve Kress, the Puffin Man, had a vision that became a reality on how to get puffins to breed again off the coast of Maine, and this will help puffins elsewhere survive.

Canadian Birding

Canada has a lot going for it in way of birding hotspots, where to stay, tours, and anything birding. Take a gander at this site, and remember that the sky is the limit in Canada.

Missisippi Kite
Missisippi Kite | Source

Mississippi Kite

Boomer Lake has had a wonderful bird of interest show up a couple of evenings this week, and that is the beautiful Mississippi Kite. Almost as regal as you can get, one cannot miss the unmistakable red eyes and black unbarred tail. This falconlike bird is quick and graceful, and resides in the southeast and south central regions of the U.S. It winters in central South America, so if you have the chance, come visit the area for this gorgeous specimen.

Great Egret
Great Egret | Source

Great Egret

More Great Egrets have been seen this week, many of which have performed rather well during acrobatic moments. They have been watching Boomer Lake quite carefully, as they will soon be on the move southerly. They have been fishing in preparation for their impending move, which I suspect will be in about two weeks. Their interior breeding sites are rather localized, but their range is expanding, especially in the northeast.

Sleepy Orange
Sleepy Orange | Source

Butterfly Notable

Butterflies are still doing well in the heat of this week, but still no sign of any monarchs. I might have seen one in a nearby field close to my residence, but it moved too quickly for me to get a good look. I strongly suspect that I was correct in my assumption. I have heard that there were sightings south of this area, but not as prevalent as we generally host, even though there was quite a bit more milkweed than usual.

I was fortunate enough to be able to spot a few sleepy oranges this week, and here is what they look like.

Mallard Silhouette
Mallard Silhouette | Source

Mallards

This group is virtually everywhere, and the breeding males that plan to migrate are almost ready to do so. Most of their new flight feathers have grown in, and they are definitely restless. It appears that many of the immatures and their families will be permanent residents for the winter. They are well fed and stout.

Great Horned Owl
Great Horned Owl | Source

Pest Poisons

I do not know where this originated, but PLEASE keep this in mind when the weather gets cold, and you might have mice move into your homes. Many of these poisons that cause a problem make the mice leave the homes and seek out water. In transit, an innocent raptor could become a victim of this slow and painful demise, just by innocently seeking out a meal.

I died today.

I was found by a kind, sweet woman who does wildlife rescue.

I was so sick, I could barely open my eyes.

She took me inside, cradling me in her warm arms, and made me warm and comfortable.

I opened my eyes and looked at her and thanked her for making my last few minutes as comfortable as possible.

But i was too sick to keep fighting anymore.

I had eaten a mouse that was poisoned, and it made me very sick.

I closed my yellow eyes for the last time and went somewhere else.

please, all I ask is never use poison to kill the mice.

poison kills owls, like me.

All I wanted was a mouse for dinner.

I died today....

Please SHARE this for poison awareness.

Stop the use of poison for rats or mice.

Please.

Save a precious life today.

it only takes one share to spread the word.

Where to Find Boomer Lake Park

Eastern Kingbird
Eastern Kingbird | Source

Noteworthy Information

There are still a few Scissor-tailed Flycatcher families with a few young that aren’t quite full grown yet, but they should be within the next week or two. The stragglers will then be on the move for southern climes, namely the tropics. The Eastern Kingbirds will soon be heading to South America where they will spend the winter. It amazes me that September is already upon us, and some new birds could well be venturing through here very soon. As you know, I will watch as best I can and give you the latest report, as I see these birds on the move.

Now, I must bid you adieu until next week. Keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding now, through winter and fall, as well as the upcoming winter season. I hear that some of the ducks are finishing up with their young up north, and we will most likely see them on Boomer Lake in December. I expect a good winter lineup, and chances are very good with the rarities that have been going throughout the country that we could easily see several of our own.

As usual, I have great interest in hearing what my readers have been seeing in their parts of the country, as well as around the world. Any unusual sightings will help me gauge what I might expecting, and help me alert others on what to be on the lookout for. As you know, with global warming, climate change, or whatever you wish to address it as, there are many unusual visitors that could show up at any given time. Do keep your cameras handy, as you could be recording valuable information for posterity.

Great Egret
Great Egret | Source
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© 2013 Deb Hirt

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

      Nor mine, Kasia--thank you for reading.

    • profile image

      Kasia 2 years ago

      SatishOctober 14, 2012 The USB port for Rock Band is an adapter that awolls you to plug in more USB cables, and yes, you have to have it to play all your instruments at once. The bundle comes with it. You can't use your PS2 guitar controller on the PS3.

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

      Hey, Mary! As the old saying goes, better late than never, eh? I am deliberately unconnected to Pinterest, as they claim ownership to photos, which is something that I'll never allow.

      I'd love to go to Alaska! Perhaps I will make it to Australia this Feb., but time will tell. Hope to see you again.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 3 years ago from New York

      I am late stopping by due to a family illness. I am never disappointed by your hubs, late coming or otherwise. The information at the beginning was so interesting. I am a big puffin fan, that's why I finally consented to go to Alaska.

      As always your photos are beautiful and yes, I cried reading about the poor owl. You certainly got your message across in a novel and touching way.

      Voted all but funny. Shared but the Pin It button seems to have disappeared.

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

      Yes, The Examiner-1, we can get sick from all of these things, too. Poison can affect our ground water, our food, everything.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Nell Rose

      Do not forget that we get sick, or worse, from the poisons too.

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

      Nell, that was my thought, exactly. There are so many thins that can get birds and other animals into so much trouble, when they innocently try to eat it.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      Wonderful hub as always, and your powerful peace about the poison is something everybody should read, it was so sad, and thats what makes it so important. we should stop and think before we put any sort of poisons down, we forget that the food chain is involved, and the birds get sick too, nell

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

      Glad to see that you have some great kids now. Back in Maine, a friend had a group of recycled chickens that used to meet your car and walk you up the driveway to the house.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      I am so busy with these dang chickens I got I hardly have time for anything, but now they are nearly as big as they will get maybe I can stop babying them. My daughter-in-law said the way they ran up to the fence she could tell they were spoiled already! They even play. Who knew?

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

      Hey, Anna! I do see that birding is doing rather well in your part of the globe, and to be honest, it is making me itch to go to other places to see birds. I am so hoping to have a friend to go with to South Padre Island off the coast of Texas(near Mexico) this spring, when the birds return to the north from Central and South America. Glad that you liked the pictures, and there will be many more.

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

      The poisoning is an awful situation. You verbalised the importance of raising awareness really well. Shared on fb.

      I thought your photograph of the Mallard silouhette was stunning.

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

      Alicia, that's why I put things like this in here once in a while. It is very important to care for our wildlife before we lose more of it. As usual, thanks for your continued support.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      The photos are lovely, but the story about the owl is very sad, Deb. Thank you for sharing it, though. It's important that we know and think about the problem.

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

      Hey, Connie! Yes, we must all face reality for the wildlife that cannot decide their fate. We have too much input on the living or their dying, so we must take responsibility as best we can. All I can do is educate, and it is up to us all as individuals in this life. Glad that you like the pics, and I will keep them coming.

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 3 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Deb, it nearly broke my heart to read the passage about the owl and mice poison. It happens far too often. Over 79% of the owls that have been tested in only one State have rat poison in their livers! I hope everyone reading this wonderful hub remembers that toxins have no place in our environment. Thanks for reminding all of the importance of not using these killers--there are much better and safer alternatives.

      Your beautiful egret images are awesome. It looks as if they are dancing in midair! And that Mississippi Kite is a gorgeous bird for sure.

      Lovely and informative as always ;) Connie

      Voted Up++++

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

      Thanks, Kris. Friend me, too, while you're at t.

    • KrisL profile image

      KrisL 3 years ago from S. Florida

      Always a pleasure, Deb. I'm on facebook now, so I'll post it.

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

      Exactly, Audrey. Please inform everyone that you know, as it isn't just owls. It is ALL raptors that eat rodents. Thanks for reading!

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

      Hey, D.A.L.! Yes, I know Nell Rose, a fabulous woman, with great talents in many fields. Thanks for the word on BTO, which will give me a lot of knowledge.

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

      Hey, Sunshine! I always tend to be alerted to things somehow, and no, it isn't always human. Glad that you like it, and remember, it is people like you that keep the force in momentum...

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 3 years ago from California

      So heartbreaking so read about the owl--we forget the food chain when we use rodent poisons--

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 3 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Hi Deb,

      glad I called for my fix, on Boomer Lake, which I found was as interesting as ever. Love all your photography especially (as readers seem to have done} the Mississippi Kite. Over here in the UK conservation efforts in Wales have seen the Red Kite come back from the brink of extinction , and there have been releases in parts of England that are doing well. Nell Rose as done an excellent hub on the subject of Kites in her region of the south of England. Voted up.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 3 years ago

      I giggled at your very first line "I was alerted..."..

      The first thing i thought was: Did a little birdie tell you so?..

      oh, god - i'm sorry..

      as always, Deb - amazingly beautiful and informative..

      sharing..

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

      Hey, Mel! This was the second time that this kite appeared, and I was duly impressed. I had never seen one before until recently, and this is a magnificent bird. Thanks for your kind words, and I hope to see you next week.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 3 years ago from San Diego California

      I loved your Kite. It was a sighting of our White tailed Kite "kiting" above a vacant lot in San Diego about 15 years ago that turned me onto ornithology. Nice work as usual.

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

      A friend back in Maine has a rental not far from her home on Dyer's Bay, where the call of the loon can be heard quite frequently during the spring and summer. Eagles are also nearby. Purity still stays within certain areas that are not too populated. However, I am very lucky to be in the middle of civilization and still have as many bird visitors as I do. Thanks for stopping by to say 'hello.'

    • Diana Lee profile image

      Diana L Pierce 3 years ago from Potter County, Pa.

      This is beautiful. I like to bird watch and I always dreamed of a cabin on a lake as being the perfect place to both relax and write until your hearts content.

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

      May freemasonry and its secrets permeate the world for the good of all. As always, Martin, thanks for your support and your visits with me.

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

      Hey, Faith Reaper! May the song in your heart for Boomer Lake spread over the world. Let everyone that you know learn what rat poison can do to other species that eat rats and mice.

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

      Hey, whonu! Thanks for visiting, and may Boomer Lake bring you additional peace and tranquility.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 3 years ago from San Francisco

      Great, as usual. I was taken back to the days I taught students

      freemasonry while strolling around Lake Merced.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Dear Deb,

      What a most stunningly beautiful hub here and filled with such useful information. That is heartbreaking about the owl indeed, so very sad. Thank you for bringing awareness to this serious issue!

      Your photography is out of this world beautiful and beyond, and life on Boomer Lake is never boring!

      Voted up ++++ and sharing

      Bless you, Faith Reaper

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 3 years ago from United States

      Very nice work and beautiful pictures. Thanks for sharing. whonu

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

      Luckily,I never experienced anything like that. Having volunteered for a bird rescue, i found out about all these things firsthand through them. Gluetraps are bad, too. They can catch birds, too, and prolong the death of a mouse. I'd rather quickly kill it with a mousetrap than make it suffer for days.

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

      Hey, Billy! This column has evolved a good deal from the first one, and people are still looking at that. Pretty amazing, eh?

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 3 years ago from Mississauga, ON

      Pest poison kills wildlife. I know it from my personal tragic experience.

      I put a bird feeder in my backyard some 6 years ago. Because I had a lackadaisical attitude towards cleaning everyday, that led to mice problem. The mice invaded my home and in order to check their proliferation, I put commercially available poison pallets in the garage and the basement. The very next day I saw a wild rabbit that had made its home in our backyard die in front of my wife and me. I tried my best to take care of him and it never occurred to me why was he dying till few days later when I saw those poisoned pallets spread all over the backyard.

      No more poison to get rid of pest for me any more. I have moved on to proactive measures, as well as more environmentally sound ways of handling pest problem.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I've always loved this series, Deb, but of late they have really been extra informative and interesting. Well done my friend; another great travel article. :)

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

      Hey, dream seeker! Thanks fr sharing this, as I'd like to alert as many people as possible what can happen to raptors that eat poisoned mice. I know that people don't want it to happen if they can help it, once they know. Thanks for helping in my quest.

    • profile image

      dreamseeker2 3 years ago

      I find it so fascinating you can get up so close on these birds. Must have a great camera and know how. Sad about the poor owl! Made me really sad to hear it died. Poor baby! Love your photos and shared info though. Had to be voted up and awesome! : )

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

      Hey, Jackie! How's your photography going? Glad that you liked seeing the Great Egrets. Today was pretty fun, even if it was for a short time this afternoon. I am so grateful that is was so cloudy today!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Gee I can't tell if that first egret is coming or going! lol

      So sad about the owl, I guess people might not consider that, well hope they do now or just get a cat.

      Oh those two egrets at the end...there just are no words....

      All my votes though!

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

      boutiqueshops, I am so glad to hear that! How far are you from South Padre Island?

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

      Oh, that is a great joy, The Examiner-1, to watch birds and flowers. I cannot think of anything nicer, or more restful. Perhaps one day I will have a hammock that I can set up in the midst of such glorious beauty.

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      Sylvia 3 years ago from Corpus Christi, Texas

      I love watching the birds as they move through South Texas. You inspire me!

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

      Thanks, Wayne. That seems to be one of my jobs, to help educate. Many of our animals are in such trouble, every little bit helps. Do pass it on, if you can.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      aviannovice

      Beautiful photos as usual. That is a sad story about the owl. Luckily I do not have mice, only insects and I do not use poisons, the insects are inside the house. I remember when I had a bird garden in NJ I used to watch the birds and the butterflies too.

    • wayne barrett profile image

      Wayne Barrett 3 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      I read about the poisoning of that owl. Heartbreaking. Keep up the good work, Deb.