Showing posts from January, 2015

Palm Warbler (Eastern)

We have the pleasure of finding Palm Warblers in Florida throughout the Winter and Spring.  Most of them are the "western" subspecies, and they are rather drab in their winter plumage.  But a few are the "eastern" subspecies.  These birds sport a fair amount more yellow, even up into the supercilium stripe. These are a special treat for me.  I typically see them in the drier habitats, rather than marshes and other wetlands.  
I'm also told that the western and eastern subspecies actually cross paths during migration.  The yellow "eastern" birds typically migrate farther west, while the more drab "western" birds head east into Florida.  This accounts for why we see so few "eastern" birds on the east coast of Florida.

Lake Apopka, 1/17/2014

Last Saturday I decided to visit Lake Apopka for the morning.  I'm participating in a competition this year called a Twelve Day BigYear.  It's a pretty fun competition--the idea is that you pick one day each month in a county (I chose Orange Co), and then find as many birds as you can in those twelve days.  It takes some planning, and to some extent the key is to find as many rarities as you can and hope the more common birds will be seen as well.  I'd love to get 200 species on the year, but that might be a bit over reaching. We'll see.  I started my January day with 92 species, mostly around Lake Apopka.

The biggest rarity was a White-faced Ibis.  It was found during the CBC in December, and thankfully it was still there.  I chose Lake Apopka just so that I could find that bird again.  It also fun to find an Ash-throated Flycatcher.  They were my best photos of the morning.

Other highlights were Fulvous and Black-bellied Whistling Ducks, Northern Waterthrush, Least …

2014: A Year in Review

You Tube Slide Show of My Favorite Bird Photos from 2014 (a work in progress)
It's been a pretty great year for birding for me.  I'm especially happy with my results for Seminole County (details for this will be in a future post), but I had my best birding year yet.  And I also had a few trips up north (Boston, Philly), one to California, and one to Mexico. These were not birding trips, but they still allowed me to get several more lifers than I would have had otherwise.

Lifers are harder to come by now that I have well over 300 species in the state of Florida, but that's okay, I'm not complaining.  It makes the challenge all the more fun.  Here's my list of lifers from 2014:
Western Tanager: Lake Apopka North Shore Restoration Area, FL (01 Jan 2014)Common Eider: Jetty Park, FL (04 Jan 2014)Western Gull: San Diego, CA (17 Mar 2014)California Towhee: San Diego, CA (17 Mar 2014)Lesser Goldfinch: San Diego, CA (17 Mar 2014)Elegant Tern: Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve, C…