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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Thursday July 10, 2014

Updated on July 10, 2014
Eastern Cottontail Rabbit
Eastern Cottontail Rabbit | Source

Field Notes

Yes, You CAN Help to Save the World

What did YOU do to save the world? Animals are sentient beings, don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise. You CAN make a difference in a small way, and for those of us that do, there is no greater joy. Join me in the fight to protect all animals, you’ll be glad that you did.

Source

Recreation of a Bird from a Fossil

Scientists have recently discovered the world’s largest flying bird. This photo was created from fossils, and birds really haven’t changed much. Curious? Take a look at this Big Bird.

Bay in Richtung Vancouver Island
Bay in Richtung Vancouver Island | Source

Say "No" to Vancouver Oil Pipeline

Big Oil wants to run a pipeline to triple the black gold to the US. This is a critical area off Vancouver in Canada that will threaten the endangered whales not only with oil spills, but with added noise to disorient them. Please help me help them by signing the petition.

Northern Flicker
Northern Flicker | Source

Let's Make June Bird Month

This is the time of year where there is a great deal of new life. It surrounds many of us, and we don’t even realize that it is there. Let’s declare this Bird Month for all of you that read this, and see if you can get outside to look around you and try to listen to your surroundings more. Trees creak in the wind, and the wind moans around obstructions. If you will listen even harder around those trees that you pass, you might just hear signs of life, and you might even see a nest or two. Are you game?

Beaver
Beaver | Source

Beaver Feeding on Plants

Our resident beavers are doing well, and once in a while, I get to see either one or both of them. This week, in the shadows, there was a large shape on the bank of the Southern Cove that made me stop and take notice. I put up the tripod, and with the telephoto, I got a wonderful surprise. One of the beavers was feeding on some plant life. Pretty good sized beaver, if I might say!

Male Northern Cardinal
Male Northern Cardinal | Source

Northern Cardinals Abound

Cardinals are still everywhere, and if you take a look at this beauty, you will gain appreciation for both his good looks and his song. Mr. Northern Cardinal was atop a tree in first light, and to have the morning light reflect on his irridescence is a beautiful sight.

Eclipsed Mallard Drake
Eclipsed Mallard Drake | Source

Many Mallards are Still Eclipsed

Some of the Mallard drakes are still very heavily eclipsed, like this one. He is still unable to fly, since he is still gaining and shedding flight feathers. By the time it is migration, he will be back in beautiful form, but he might decide to stay. Just in case he doesn’t, he’ll certainly be able to head where he wants to go.

Three Western Kingbird Fledglings, Assorted Ages
Three Western Kingbird Fledglings, Assorted Ages | Source

Little Western Kingbird Fledglings

Our sweet little Western Kingbirds have all their ducks in a row, including themselves. If you look at this trio very closely, you’ll see that they all are different ages. The nice thing is, even though they are not at the lake, they are right where I can keep a close watch on them—in my yard.

Carolina Chckadee
Carolina Chckadee | Source

Northern Reaches

Yesterday, I made a journey to the Northern Reaches, to see if all is well, which it is. I also spotted Great Egret, Great Blue Heron, Carolina Chickadee, and heard Red-bellied Woodpecker. There are Baltimore Orioles, Eastern Bluebirds, and a host of other wonderful birds. Anxiously awaiting fall when the leaves begin to drop, I hope to actually see some of our shyer birds, too, and perhaps get a photo or two. There is still a lot of summer ahead of us, so a few might even pop out at me once in a while. One never knows what nature holds.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher Nestling
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher Nestling | Source

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher Nestling

Here is a shot of a lone Scissor-tailed Flycatcher nestling. He or she has grown so much in the past few days that the nest is almost too small for this single occupant. This bird won’t be in here much longer.

Great Blue Heron "Arms Wide"
Great Blue Heron "Arms Wide" | Source

Great Blue Heron in Art Form

Here are a few rare shots that most people will never hope to see. Since there is a heron rookery at the Northern Reaches, I am privy to see many interesting and rare things. This gorgeous Great Blue Heron is sunning himself. He hasn’t a care in the world, even though he knows that I am right in his vicinity. Eventually when you observe birds long enough, they will now that they can trust you. If you’re patient, you just might be the person getting these clicks.

Male House Finch
Male House Finch | Source

What is the Difference Between a House Finch and a Purple Finch?

This might help a few of you tell the difference between a Purple Finch and a House Finch. The House Finch is more common, all over the country, and the Purple Finch resides in the eastern half of the US. The male House Finch has brown streaking upon his sides and belly, whereas the Purple Finch does not. The male Purple Finch will also have more red all over him, including the top of his head, as well as a notched tail. Now that you are armed with information, seek and you shall now find.

We’ll talk more next week, so in the meantime, keep your eyes on the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding!

Where is Boomer Lake in Stillwater, OK?

Great Blue Heron Sunning
Great Blue Heron Sunning | Source
Eastern Kingbird in First Light
Eastern Kingbird in First Light | Source
Marsh Rat
Marsh Rat | Source
Source

© 2014 Deb Hirt

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

      Yes, teaches, and can you imagine the Eagles being dwarfed by this bird? What a thought!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      I am so glad that 20 foot winged bird is not here today. Can you imagine the shadow it would cast upon the ground? Always enjoy your posts.

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

      Hey, Suhail! Being inside an energy company would not be a bad idea. You could learn so much about how to help the environment by seeing directly what doesn't work well. I can be humorous…but in a WARPED way. Thanks for commenting, as always.

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

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

      I am seriously thinking of joining compliance department of an energy company to bring change from within. Let us see if that works out.

      Btw, thanks for standing up for a great cause and those pictures are awesome. I am noticing quite a bit of humour this time.

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

      Thanks, Mel! I am very close to the line for the Western Kingbird. I had never seen one until I moved to OK from the east coast. I have heard that CO is a beautiful state. I hope to get there sometime soon.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 3 years ago from San Diego California

      So you must be at the crossover region of the Western and Eastern Kingbirds. I still have not seen an Eastern, hopefully when I go to my mother's house in Colorado later on this summer. Your photo of the beaver was awesome, and I really like the Chickadee. Great hub!

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

      There are leash laws, but the dog clearly got away from her, as she was calling it, as it fled into the geese.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      Thankfully you were there to stop the bird dog from doing his thing. It's clear that the owner has no clue so I doubt that the evil eye will have any effect. Are there leash laws around the lake? Last summer, someone was visiting a neighbor and brought their bird dog who promptly chased my Road Runner all around my property. My dogs are confined to their fenced yard, although we have nearly 10 acres beyond it. It never fails that bunnies, skunks and etc. come into the fenced dog's territory.

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

      Yes, Peg, good thing. Earlier in the week a woman brought her BIRD DOG to the lake. It got away from her and was chasing the Canada Geese. It nearly caught one, which is when I began chasing it. The dog listened to commands, so that helped to some degree. Needless to say, I gave HER the evil eye, but I don't think that she really cared...

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

      Dave, poisons only beget death to everything. Yes, scientists try to be helpful(shaking head), but I'll be darned if the ruination doesn't spread to the surroundings. Poisoned ground water is only a start to spread the trail of doom, but these poor, dear animals die quickly from direct contact...

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

      Yes, Imogen, I like your thoughts on protecting the environment--you are right about grooming a passion into something greater. Thanks for your kind words.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      Hi Deb. Awesome photos as always. That Great Heron sunning is amazing and the little bunny is too. We have one that lives on our property and he's a late riser. We often see him well after sunrise, feeding in the back yard. The dogs love to give chase, but thankfully, he's fast.

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 3 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Hi Deb, another fascinating and informative visit. Talking about damage to our fellow creatures, scientist in Holland have strong evidence that the neonicotinoid's that are threatening the worlds bees are also killing many farmland birds. When will they ever learn ?

    • Imogen French profile image

      Imogen French 3 years ago from Southwest England

      You have some fantastic pictures here, Deb - very impressive. It looks like such a beautiful place and I can see why you are so passionate about protecting it. The best thing we can do is look after our own local environment first and then apply that ethos to the rest of the world. Keep up the good work :-)

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

      Absolutely, Jaye. Better be careful…you might get hooked and want to see more of them!

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 3 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Thanks for the recommendations for birding guides, Deb. I want to learn to identify the beautiful winged creatures that visit my property rather than just think of them as 'lovely birds."

      Jaye

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

      Hey, Alicia! There are a lot of gorgeous birds, Alicia, which is why I look forward to doing a little more travel in order to find them.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I always look forward to your weekly reports about life at Boomer Lake, Deb. I enjoy looking at the photos and reading the bird news, too. The male Northern Cardinal is certainly a beautiful bird!

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

      Thanks, Nell! I'm already looking for more interesting material for next time.

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

      You know that I will, Kevin!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      Hi Deb, 20 foot wingspan? Wow! I love prehistory, so thats fascinating! its always lovely reading your hubs, and your photos are wonderful too!

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Amazing news bout the 24 ft. fossil bird Deb, and a 20 ft. wingspan! Wow! June is fine with me for a bird month since that is about when new bird life begins. I can see you are taking care of your Kingbirds. :-) Keep them coming!

      Kevin

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

      Thanks, Eddy! Put out a feeder or two, a birdbath, and you never know what will pop in. Happy birding!

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

      Faith--maybe a Northern Mockingbird? Do you have a birding guide? Try Sibley's or Peterson's.

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

      Kathryn--take a look here--http://debhirt.blogspot.com. Many of these birds have adapted and can be found in the city. Look up, and you might even see Red-tail hawks or the American Kestrel.

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

      Thanks, Jaye, I appreciate the fact that you signed the petition. There are so many good causes out there for animals. I choose ten, as they cannot advocate for themselves. Peterson or Sibley have the best birding guides, which will teach you a great deal, even National Geographic. I think once you get the guide, you might branch out to other birds. That's how one learns. You might get hooked, too, you never know. More importantly, have fun with it. Thanks for all that you do.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      Oh how I love spending time with you at Boomer Lake Deb.Another amazing visit and how right you are in that if you are amongst these birds long enough they will feel comfortable by our side. I had a little Mistle Thrush who used to visit daily and after many months she would more or less stay right at my feet. I didn't see her after that but what warm memories she left. Here's to many more days at Boomer Lake Deb. Lots of love from my little corner of Wales.

      Eddy.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Yes, I believe we can all make a difference and make this world a little bit better for all creatures great and small. Really love your great variety of photos here of the rabbit, beaver and even your spider web. Of course, the birds are always extraordinarily beautiful. That is interesting about those large birds!

      I saw a bird here today in my backyard that I have never seen before. It was not a large bird but dark in color and had a striking white marking on both sides of its wings. It was almost a line but it starts out small and widens at the end of its wing. I know that is not the best description ...

      Thank you for sharing all that is happening at Boomer Lake. I look forward to next week's update.

      Up and more and away

    • Kathryn L Hill profile image

      Kathryn L Hill 3 years ago from LA

      These are beautiful pictures. Really beautiful! So refreshing to us city folks. Animals are awesome.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 3 years ago from Deep South, USA

      I was glad to sign the petition, Deb, and thanks for pointing me to that site. Adding one's name to worthy petitions is a part of activism anyone can do from anywhere. I also registered for their mailing list. There was also a link on the site to an article about what would happen if Coke aired truthful ads about their products. So I took a bit of a detour....and then I came back to Boomer Lake.

      Your photography, as usual, is gorgeous. The Blue Heron is majestic, both with his wings spread (glorious shot!) and then at rest looking like a ballerina in position.

      Love the shot of the beaver. His eyes seem to be looking right at the camera. Maybe he was wondering about that human with the strange contraption (tripod), hoping you/it would not disturb his meal before he sated his appetite.

      The beautiful red cardinals (male?) visit my property often. There are also many other birds, but I can't identify them. This morning before the rain began, I was just outside the back door when two large blue-gray birds with lots of white on their wings flew out of some tall shrubs into a tree on the other side of the fence. I know I've seen some like them before, but have no idea what they're called. I need to find a book with photos of and information about birds of North American--sort of a directory of birds. Can you recommend either a beginner's book or an online site of that nature? I should at least be able to identify those beautiful winged creatures that pay me a visit!

      Reading your reports from Boomer Lake and looking at your awesome photos provide me with a lovely view of nature even on a day (such as this one) when it rains hard most of the day and I stay indoors.

      Regards, JAYE

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      They can Leslie, but it is rare. However, being in the midst of global warming, many unusual events will occur. After all, the Snowy Owl went to Florida…thanks, as always.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 3 years ago

      Those big birds kinda remind me of flying squirrels...kinda sorta.

      I'm seeing a lot of birds this year that look like that red cardinal. I assume with the name 'northern' - they get up here?

      i don't remember seeing them before..

      Great info and awesome pics Debxx

    • aviannovice profile image
      Author

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Billy, it all comes down to educating everyone. People have been brainwashed by the government so long, they don't know what to believe or what is good. That's where people like us come in. All we can do is keep working on the dissemination of truth.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Say no to any pipeline...period...end of discussion....when will we ever learn, Deb?

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

      Thanks, Jackie! Glad that I was able to show you a earthy, live beaver!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Oh that Heron tip toeing through the tulip; I love him! I saw a beaver dead in the road a few days back and never dreamed there was even any around; so you just never know! Great hub as always. ^+