Well I've been away from blogging for a while, but not away from birding. I've been visiting Mead Gardens frequently as migrants have been trickling in. The birds are teasing me right now--there aren't high numbers of species, but it's fun to see what I can. I've been dead set on photographing both waterthrushes this fall. As of today, I have photographs of both, but I'm only really happy with the Northern Waterthrush above. The Louisiana Waterthrush below is my first photograph of the species, but I hope that it gives me a chance for a better shot.
If you're not familiar with waterthrushes, these warblers can be very difficult to tell apart, even for very experienced birders. The Northern Waterthrush has some streaking on the throat and often a yellowish color on the belly. The Louisiana has a bolder white stripe above the eye that is thick behind the eye with no yellow on the belly (though with buffy flanks). Being colorblind, I'm still not always confident in distinguishing between them, but my friends tell me the colors are right.
Black & White Warbler
Another fun migrant I found on Saturday was a Black and White Warbler. These are one of my favorite warblers.
And Red-eyed Vireos are now frequently seen throughout the gardens.