A Snowy Redemption

Definitely sticking with the game plan for this month, staying ahead of the game and getting the posts out early.  It definitely  helps when you already have the images worked up in the digital darkroom.  To be honest, short of getting the birds in the tin, the major effort in this whole blogging thingy is working up the images to make it worth my reader’s visit time.  Of course, this doesn’t always happen, case in point the horrific Cave Swallow pictures I forced upon you a few posts back.  I try my best so you can at least tell it is a bird – not to mention Ron is starting to push me with the quality stuff he is putting up over on his blog (link here).  You probably didn’t know this, but I credit him for getting me into photography while I was in high school and the reason I can navigate around a camera (although I did introduce him to back-button focus).   Today’s featured bird is a bit of an atonement for a slight I made in a recent post.

Snowy Egret found at South Padre Island Bird Viewing and Nature Center December 2016

Within the Cinnamon Teal post (link here), I unintentionally dismissed one of the most regal birds there is (at least in North America).  It wasn’t the species that dimmed my excitement, just that I was revved up to add a new +1 to the list.  I am lucky enough to have a large number of Snowy Egret shots from just about everywhere we’ve traveled along with tins full from Emiquon and other local water hotspots.  When I saw this set of Snowies in the post queue, I immediately decided this was the perfect time to bring them out.

Snowy Egret found at Galveston Island, Texas, January 2017

Hit the jump to see some more picture of this immaculate bird.

Continue reading A Snowy Redemption

Often Heard, Rarely Spotted

In preparation for tomorrow, I did some digging in my out building, found a lawn chair and dragged it out to the middle of the yard.  Grabbed a pair of flip flops, a bottle of suntan lotion, cheap sunglasses and my favorite birding reference book.  Going to be some fun in the heatwave forecasted to hit sometime tomorrow…40F.  However, there are possible clouds and rain sneaking in for the afternoon through tomorrow night.  Needless to say, I’ll take it.  It might look a bit odd being surrounded by a foot of snow that is still lingering, but I “needz my vitamin D”.  In truth, I am skeptical it is going to get that warm with this much snow and ice about, but I will definitely be lacing up the running shoes and getting a few miles in snow, rain or sunshine.  It might be a bit sketchy on the footing, but it will help the soul to lift the winter blahs.    If nothing else, I can simply recall warmer places… for instance Las Vegas.

First a public service warning to those of you that might have adverse reactions to creatures with red eyes.  As with the previous post on the Cinnamon Teal, today’s featured bird also possesses a blood red eye.  Feel free to view the rest of the post through your fingers if that will make you feel more comfortable ha!

Spotted Towhee found at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, Las Vegas, Nevada, November 2018

I was just talking to Ron tonight on how odd it is that so many birds have red hued eyes and I am not talking about the night owls squinting through strained eyes and hazy rooms trying to hit the big payout on the one arm bandits (another term that is becoming outdated with the advent of digital technology/machines).  We were wondering if it provided some evolutionary benefit, maybe better able to see at dark or perhaps provide better tracking of UV urine trails of prey (yes, some birds have that ability like the Kestrel) or perhaps it is simply a defensive mechanism – if I was a bird I would stay way the hell away from something that had red eyes – clearly bloodthirsty heathens – just saying.  Neither of us have a definitive response to the quandary which means I’ll have something to research while enjoying that lawn chair tomorrow.  If you happen to have some thoughts on red eyes feel free to let us know in the comments.  We here at Intrigued are thirsty for wildlife knowledge.

Short one tonight, but if you hit the jump, I have a few more words and one more image to share.

Continue reading Often Heard, Rarely Spotted