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Life at Boomer Lake with Deb, Thursday May 8, 2014

Updated on May 8, 2014
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Field Notes

Bird Rarities of the World

From the common to the uncommon to the downright rarities of the world, this trailer is sure to please. Presented lovingly, only from The World of Birds:

Sarus Crane Mating Ritual
Sarus Crane Mating Ritual | Source

Mating Ritual of the Sarus Crane

Observe the mating ritual of the remarkable Sarus Crane of Asia and Australia. They have a great stronghold in India and Pakistan and are the tallest cranes in the world. They are graceful, elegant, and a spectacular sight to behold. Welcome to this world of utter beauty…

African Drongo
African Drongo | Source

The African Drongo

The African Drongo is a thief, or an opportunist, just like the gull or the grackle. However, the drongo doesn’t steal food from its own species, it looks to meerkats for sustenance. Read on to see what science learns on a daily basis:

Great Blue Heron Portrait
Great Blue Heron Portrait | Source

Water is the Elixir of Life

It appears that the dry weather is going to cease for a little while, a fortunate thing. Much of Oklahoma and the surrounding states are experiencing a dry spell. Fortunately, Boomer Lake is weathering well, and a great deal of birds are here specifically, due to the water supply. This is reason enough for a Bald Eagle family to have settled in Stillwater, and the way things are going, we can possibly expect to have more.

White Tailed Deer
White Tailed Deer | Source
Box Turtle
Box Turtle | Source

There's Much More Than Birds...

Birds are not the only form of wildlife at the lake. This week, I saw a white tailed deer, a box turtle, numerous red eared sliders, and we have two beaver condos in the Southern Cove.

Great Egret in Breeding Plumage
Great Egret in Breeding Plumage | Source

Great Egret and His Breeding Plumage

The beautiful Great Egret has been visiting the main part of the lake. He is dressed in his spectacular breeding plumage, and as been advertising for a mate to come his way. This beauty has an appendage to his tail and has been developing a white headdress as well as additional tail plumes.

Mallard Ducklings
Mallard Ducklings | Source

The First Mallard Ducklings

Not only are we looking at a dozen Canada Goose families, we now have a Mallard first family. Mother and father have proudly been taking their children around the lake, which has been eliciting many oooo’s and ahhhhh’s from the locals, people included.

Great Blue Heron
Great Blue Heron | Source
Spotted Sandpiper
Spotted Sandpiper | Source

Great Blue Heron and Spotted Sandpiper

Boomer Lake is filled with fish, and Great Blue Heron has been getting several good sized crappies for his eating pleasure. The Spotted Sandpiper has been foraging around the Southern Cove with Mr. Heron and provided a wonderful photographic opportunity for all of us. This Sandpiper is in breeding plumage(due to the spots).

Killdeer
Killdeer | Source

Killdeer

This little Killdeer was on the north side of the lake by Goose Island. These birds nest directly on the ground, and their eggs are spotted in such a way that they are camouflaged very well for dirt and rocky areas.

Displaying Northern Mockingbird
Displaying Northern Mockingbird | Source

Northern Mockingbird

The Northern Mockingbird is all around the lake, and this one is a prime example of a single male. These singles will make a good amount of racket in order to attract a female and do flips in the air from high places, namely telephone and electrical lines. Not only will it attract other birds, but it will make you notice them, too. They can also be seen on the ground wing-flashing, when hunting for bugs. They raise their wings and lower them while walking on the ground.

Cedar Waxwing
Cedar Waxwing | Source

Cedar Waxwings

Cedar Waxwings are also plentiful, as are the Bell’s Vireo and Clay-colored Sparrow.

Additionally, I have seen the Northern Cardinal in plentiful supply in other areas of the state.

Male Red-winged Blackbird
Male Red-winged Blackbird | Source

Red-winged Blackbirds

The Red-winged Blackbirds also have a superb stronghold all over the lakefront, and have been moving the American Crow and Red-shouldered Hawk whenever they come into their territories. They generally mob these birds, so if you see the blackbirds in hot pursuit, it is just a general police escort that really could turn nasty rather quickly.

Baltimore Orioles

There appears to be more Baltimore Orioles in the area than there was last year. I find their call soothing and their orange-yellow breast very easy to spot. They will make pouched, weaved nests on the ends of branches in deciduous trees. These are some of the strongest, safest nests that I have ever seen, a wonderful natural talent.

Double-crested Cormorants "Kissin' Cousins2"
Double-crested Cormorants "Kissin' Cousins2" | Source

Double-crested Cormorants

The Double-crested Cormorants are named as such, simply for their breeding plumage, which are two crests on the top of the head. They will stay with us until the heat becomes unbearable, then head for all points north.

Last But Not Least

There are many more birds that I spotted this week, including the Red-bellied and Red-headed Woodpeckers. Green Heron has not showed himself to me since the weekend, but is in the vicinity. There are also several other warblers and sparrows in the surrounding areas, as well as a whisper of the Ruby-crowned Kinglet. These are fast and tiny little things, so if you spot one, you are lucky. If you manage to photograph one, you are even more fortunate.

All good things must come to an end, so I will temporarily bid you adieu. Keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding until next time. Dust off those binoculars, charge that camera battery, and get out there to enjoy your own wildlife. We will talk again next week.

Where Is Boomer Lake In Stillwater, OK?

Great Blue Heron Take Off
Great Blue Heron Take Off | Source
Male Mallard
Male Mallard | Source
Great Blue Heron
Great Blue Heron | Source

© 2014 Deb Hirt

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

      That is an admirable time, Kira.

    • profile image

      Kira 2 years ago

      The race was good- I've been pounding the mieglae in preparation for the NYC marathon this fall. I wanted a good race in Queens at the end of July, but the hot temperatures put me under for a few weeks. I was only shooting for a 1:22 for the Bronx half (to get in the competitive start corral for the marathon), but found myself close enough to try to break 1:20. I closed the last 2 miles at 4 mile race pace (definitely a confidence booster), but put off the kick a bit too long. Long story short, wish I would have broken 1:20, but overall I'm pretty happy with my race.It wasn't that bad of a setting for a race- a few rolling hills in the south Bronx, but otherwise it was pretty flat.

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

      Indeed, tazzytamar. I have not ben disappointed yet.

    • tazzytamar profile image

      Anna 2 years ago from chichester

      So beautiful - Boomer lake sure seems like the place to be no matter what the season!

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

      Hey, Jackie! Thanks, I sure got lucky this week. Wait until next week, though...

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      You got some beauties and I almost missed this! So sorry; cause I am always anxious to see what you have and you never disappoint! ^+

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

      Hey, teaches! Waxwings are gorgeous birds. There is also the Bohemian Waxwing, but they are in the northwestern and north central part of the country. Glad that you like the series.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      Now that I see the Cedar WaxWing here, I think I may have seen one recently. I enjoyed the photos and information.

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

      Hey, precy anza! Glad that you liked those pictures. I knew that they were winners the moment that I got them. How are your hummers doing?

    • precy anza profile image

      precy anza 3 years ago from San Diego

      Lovely photos Avian! That deer is a beauty. Would be such a treat if I could witness a Mallard family, was years ago when I saw ducklings with their swimming lessons. That male Mallard's photo is a winner for me thou, love the colors!

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

      Hey, Dave! Thanks so much. Luckily, the Mallard is in ample supply. Many young ones are on the lake, too, which isn't going to hurt. However, we do need rain, and a good deal of it, as soon as possible. It has cooled down again, which will help with the water evaporation.

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

      ChitrangadaSharan, it is always my pleasure. Bird life here is now at an all time high, due to the fact that this lake has water. Many rivers are nearly dry, due to area drought conditions, which actually involves several states.

    • D.A.L. profile image

      Dave 3 years ago from Lancashire north west England

      Brilliant as always Deb. Your photography is amazing. Despite all the rare birds { very informative and colourful} my favourite pic is the one of the male mallard this unusual pose is fantastic . Well done!

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 3 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Interesting hub with wonderful pictures as always!

      Thanks for educating us about these beautiful creatures!

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

      Hey, Alicia! The people around the lake seem to be enjoying it, too. I love how they stop to talk and tell me about their own adventures

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

      Thanks, Faith Reaper! The animals and birds need more advocates.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I look forward to your weekly reports very much, Deb. They are always interesting and enjoyable. Thanks for keeping us up to date on life at Boomer Lake.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Came back to share as I see the sharing buttons now.

      Blessings

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

      Hey, Faith Reaper! There are lots of great things on the lake now, and there will even be more soon enough. Thanks for letting everyone else see what great wildlife is available.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      I am not seeing any share buttons at the moment. I shall return.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Wow, Deb, you did get a lot of great shots there on Boomer Lake. That Cedar Waxwing is so beautiful as are all the birds. I love that little family there too!

      Thank you for sharing the videos. They are truly amazing to watch.

      Up and more and away

      I hope you have a lovely weekend on Boomer Lake and I look forward to reading next week.

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

      Glad you enjoyed the column, Nell!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      I loved the Crane dance! the way they put their heads back and make that noise, its amazing! Wonderful photos and info too Deb, have a wonderful weekend! nell

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

      Nadine, you are so welcome. If you want to see more, you can visit at http://debhirt.blogspot.com

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 3 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      What great photos. Thanks for sharing your Hobby Deb.

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

      Kevin, the African Drongo is also known as as the forked-tailed, the common, or Savannah Drongo. I'm sure that you know it by one of those names. The mockingbird is truly a flasher. I have a few pictures of one doing that.

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

      Hey, Blond Logic! Sounds like you're in as great a place as I am. I would love to see your birds...

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I had a wonderful time reading this Deb. I thought that the mating dance of the Sarus Crane was awesome! I have seen quite a few bird mating dances but I have never seen a dance where any mate jumps high enough for the other to duck under it!!

      I believe that I have heard of the Drongo before. The name, plus what it does both sound familiar.

      When the mockingbird is opening its wings while seeking insects, it does that to shadow them from light and show the white inside its wings. The insect gets confused and seeks the light.

      I voted it up and shared it.

      Kevin

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 years ago from Brazil

      I simply loved it.

      We have a lake in front of our house and even though it is only 50mx 50m when full, we have had no less than 17 water birds. At the moment we have wattled jacanas nesting with four eggs. Only about 12 feet away is a least grebe nest.

      We feel truly blessed to be able to witness the birds as they come and go. The great egret, which you listed, we have but ours isn't in his breeding plummage.

      I can relate to the excitement you get from a new arrival or unusual behavior from a resident bird.

      Although we have recorded over 100 different species on our patch of 8 acres, I think the water birds are our favorites.

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

      Thanks, Riz! Glad that you enjoyed it.

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      Rizwana Yasmin 3 years ago

      Most amazing Deb thank you

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

      Any time, Suhail, any time. It brings us a great form of relaxation, too.

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

      Thanks, Billy! There are so many things in the works right now, including my own research...

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

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

      The intro content of your hubs is always very appealing and this is no different. Beautiful video, great stories and pictures. I have been so busy with office that I almost forgot about the nature's beauty until this page reminded me of it.

      Thanks for coming up with nature lover's delight on a frequent basis.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Loved the bird rarities...nice addition to the series, Deb!

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