Mead Gardens, 4/1/2012

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Hermit Thrush
I drove by Mead Gardens on my way home today.  I spent about 45 minutes there just to see if I could find anything interesting.  I only saw about 18 species there, but I did see my first Hermit Thrush of the year.  One of the Wood Ducks was out in nice light, a Barred Owl was out keeping watch, a Carolina Wren put on a little concert for me, and a Red-Shouldered Hawk flew by with a duckling in its grasp.  I heard at least one Northern Parula but never found it; I think it was across the stream on private property.

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Wood Duck
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Red-shouldered Hawk with Duckling
It was also fun to photograph species other than birds today.  I got my first photographs of a Long-tailed Skipper, and a wonderful dragonfly I can't identify perched for me.  There were two Red-eared Slider turtles on a log that were in just the right light.  I see them there often, but they seem always to plop into the water when I get ready to take a picture.  This time they were much more cooperative.

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Long-tailed Skipper
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Red-eared Sliders
Here's the list of species I saw today from about 11:45am to 12:30pm:

Wood Duck 1
Great Blue Heron 1
Great Egret 1
White Ibis 1
Black Vulture 5
Turkey Vulture 3
Red-shouldered Hawk 1
Mourning Dove 2
Barred Owl 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker 1
Fish Crow X
Carolina Wren 2
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 1
Hermit Thrush 1
Northern Mockingbird 2
Northern Parula 1
Northern Cardinal 15


  1. Great photos Scott! Poor duckling! The dragonfly close up is excellent!

    1. Thanks! I thought it was a squirrel or something when I took the picture, but when I got it home and zoomed in on it, I saw it was a half-eaten duckling.

  2. Yes, I agree with the Long-Tailed Skipper (Urbanus proteus) ID.  The other candidate would be the Dorantes Longtail (U. dorantes), and the characteristic that pushes me over the edge is that the brown band on the hindwing below is a solid line, not a longish patch.

    If you haven't found it yet, here's the checklist of butterflies in your area:

    Great pics as always!

  3. Thanks, Jeff.  Glad I got it right.  Thanks for the link to the checklist!


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