Bald Eagles at Conowingo Dam, Revisited

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagles gather below Conowingo Dam in Maryland for good fishing. When the water is flowing, the fish are also pouring over the dam. Some are stunned when they hit the water, and make for easy pickin’s below. The bank on one side of the Susquehanna River is lined with fishermen and photographers. The rocks on the other side of the river are covered with birds: Bald Eagles, Black Vultures, Double-crested Cormorants, a few Great Blue Herons, and hundreds of gulls. The real show is the eagles, however. Not all […]

Greater Roadrunner–Bird of the Day


No visit to the Southwest is complete without a view of the Greater Roadrunner. Of my half-dozen or so birding trips to the Southwest, I’ve caught only glimpses of this interesting bird. This trip was different. On five occasions, my husband and I were treated to long looks and many photos of Wile E. Coyote’s prey. One individual lived next door to the casita that we rented in Sedona, Arizona, and it was often seen on the road, on a fence post, or in the little cemetery nearby. All about […]

Lincoln’s Sparrow II–Bird of the Day

Lincoln's Sparrow

Lincoln’s Sparrow passes through most of the United States during migration, and is always a treat to see with its buffy chest and malars and its fine black streaks. They are just as variable as the other sparrows, as these next photos will show. You will notice very buffy, slighty buffy, finely streaked and heavily streaked birds.   Just by pishing lightly or playing the song of the Song Sparrow, I found myself suddenly overwhelmed by curious sparrows of all types along with Common Yellow-throat, House Wren, and Catbird!     […]



    The Limpkin is a strange water bird of the Florida and Georgia swamps, something like a cross between a rail and  a stork. It doesn’t seem to fit in either family, and thus the Limpkin was classified in a family all by itself: Arimidae. Its range extends south from Florida to much of the fresh water swamps of Central and South America. The Limpkin’s diet is largely made up of apple snails, but it will eat fresh water mussels, frogs, and other creatures.                                                 Because of the […]

Red-headed Woodpecker–Bird of the Day!

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpeckers are fairly rare in our area, so it’s a treat to catch a sighting of their bold white patches on black wings, bright red head, and stark white belly. They nest in the excavated holes of dead trees and they require an under-story that is clear. Cornell’s website, All About Birds, says that it is sometimes called the “Flying Checkerboard” because of its dramatic coloring. This year, my birding friends and I found three nesting pairs within a few miles of each other! Red-headed Woodpeckers often have two broods […]

Bird of the Day: American Redstart building a nest

American Redstart

    During the Acadia Birding Festival, I took a morning off to meander by myself along the shore and the road near our hotel. Some movement caught my eye low in the brushy area beside the road. A female American Redstart was busy stripping the long fibers of a dead branch in the thicket.     She had to work plenty hard in order to pull off this long fiber!     To my delight, I could see her fly immediately to her little cup-like nest that she was […]

Bird of the Day: Green Heron

Green heron

After getting so many interesting and beautiful photos, that I can’t seem to keep up with my blog, I’ve decided to do some of my posts as “Bird of the Day” with very little commentary. Hope you enjoy the pictures, and hopefully more frequent posts! These photos of the Green Heron were from the kayak at Rose Valley Lake in PA this morning. Getting hungry! Oh, there’s a little fishy! Darn!! Missed again! That makes me SO MAD!! Come on, shake it off!! You can do this! OK, let’s try […]

Razorbills and Common Murres: Birding Machias Seal Island


Razorbills and Common Murres were among the penguin-like birds that were observed on our trip to Machias Seal Island, along with the Atlantic Puffin. All of these species are Alcids. Razorbills and Murres look very similar with their black and white coloring, but the Razorbills have a very thick, blunt bill with a white line going back towards the front of the eye. They spend their lives at sea, coming to rocky coasts and cliffs only to nest. They are great divers, able to dive up to 120 meters, dining […]

Atlantic Puffins on Machias Seal Island

Atlantic Puffin

Seeing Atlantic Puffins was the principle reason for wanting to go birding in Maine this Spring. Getting there by boat can be iffy, depending on the fog and the wind. When the seas are too rough to land on Machias Seal Island, one of three islands where Puffins nest, they can at least be observed from a rocking boat. My friends and I were on a Road Scholar trip called “Chickadees, Grouse, Puffins and More: A Birder’s Dream in Down East Maine.” Of course we hoped for getting our bins […]

Warblers! Parade through the Puddles

Yellow Warbler

Early to mid-May is a warbler frenzy, both for the warblers migrating through the area and for the photographer who wants to catch these little jewels on camera. So what do you do when you are at Presque Isle for less than 24 hours, the light is horrible, the leaves are out, and it’s threatening to rain? The first day yielded few visible warblers, so I went to my secret spot which had a couple of inviting mud puddles, sat down at the edge of the trail at a respectful […]