A couple of hours in Kirkwood, Lake Tahoe...220809

September 3, 2009

As I said


when you can, even in the middle of a family wedding, do sneak out for a couple of hours if you are in a mountain resort…because the results can be wonderful!

Disclaimer: It was rainy and misty, but there were a couple of brief interludes of sunlight….and remember, I had MLC2, not any DSLR! :)

Apart from the RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD in the post above (and let me tell you, that took up a LOT of those two hours!), there were so many other birds…all common ones, no doubt, but all new to me.

Once again, thanks to

Dave Pierce

who is truly an experienced birder. Unstintingly, he gave me help with the id’s….if you click on that link, you will see what excellent work he is doing in other fields, too.

I didn’t walk very far…just an area of, perhaps, half, or one square kilometre….and a LOT of the sightings were in a couple of pine trees…..

I saw large groups of


and watched them flit, sparrow-like, from ground to bushes, in a cloud that felt like a reverse fall of leaves. Here’s one male:

male dark-eyed junco on pines 220809

Here he is, a little closer: dark-eyed junco male

And here's a female or juvenile one: female or immature dark-eyed junco This one, Dave says, could be a COWBIRD : could be cowbird 220809 Then, of course, there were the AMERICAN GOLDFINCHES goldfinch in the pines 220809 I saw an AMERICAN RAVEN fly past, and heard its racuous call, so when, in the rain and mist, I saw a bird, I took a quick shot, thinking it was a raven. It was only later that I realized that it was actually a juvenile RED-TAILED HAWK .... juv red-tailed hawk kirkwood 230809 Seems to be drying its damp feathers! There was also a p LESSER GOLDFINCH (according to Dave, a pale female!) pale female Lesser Goldfinch 220809 I found this LINCOLN'S SPARROW Lincoln's Sparrow 220809 ....and just to show that the Indian birds have sent word about me to their American counterpart, this RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD was mooning me as usual! backside of rufous hummingbird

Even the birds I thought I had seen before…I actually hadn’t! This bird, I thought, was the


but no, it was, Dave informs me, the


Brewer's Blackbird Kirkwood 220809

So many birds in about an hour (one hour was just spent with those delightful hummingbirds!!)…how I wish I had a little longer in that beautiful place!