Friday, August 19, 2016

International Crane Foundation Baraboo Wisconsin

    There are 15 species of cranes in the world and there is only one place where you can see them all, the International Crane Foundation in Baraboo,WI.  For more information and a visitors' guide check out their website  International Crane Foundation
Close up of Black Necked Crane
Grey Crowned Crane

Black Crowned Crane

Blue Crane


Eurasian Crane

Hooded Crane

Sarus Crane

Siberian Crane

Wattled Crane

Whooping Crane

Monday, August 8, 2016

Weekend at Ludington Harbor

  Plenty of photo ops at the harbor this weekend.
Merlin announcing the rising Sun, he's come to snuff the rooster

Piping Plover

Semipalmated Plover

Juvenile Spotted Sandpiper

Belted Kingfisher

Female Yellow Warbler

Great Blue Heron hunting with its shadow

Round Goby chose to dodge the shadow

Dinosaur feet

  Friday and Saturday evenings clear skies and convenient celestial objects allowed for some astrophotography.
Moon on Saturday

Moon with Jupiter on Friday

Venus drawing a crowd on Friday evening

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Birds on the Pier

  The unedited photo file on my hard-drive has been filling up since Friday to the point where I'd almost need a day off to tend to it.
  Here are some photos taken at the south pier at Ludington Harbor.

Piping Plover

Northern Pintail

Gobal Annhilation

Untimely Blink

Least Sandpiper

Semipalmated Plover

(Un)Spotted Sandpiper

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Common Eider Ludington Harbor 7/28/16

  This morning while walking the south pier at Ludington Harbor I noticed an unusual duck about 50 yds out on the lake side of the breakwater.  I took over 100 photos until a boat leaving the harbor spooked the duck which took off and appeared to land just north of the north pier.  When I got home I had an email from Van Burmiester with an attached photo of the same bird. I suspected that he was correct in determination that it was a Common Eider.   Have since received many replies confirming it as a Common Eider.  Thanks all.

   A Rare Bird Observation form and photos have been sent to the Michigan Rare Bird Review Committee.  If accepted, this would be only the 6th documented state record for this species.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Hungry Hungry Heron

     Crossed paths this morning with a most-cooperative and focused Great Blue Heron on the south pier at Ludington Harbor this morning.
Heron.      May you please repeat the word?

Heron.      May you please give me the definition?
  This bird seemed to be determined to rid Lake Michigan of invasive Round Gobies.
A wading bird that has long neck and legs........

May you please repeat the word?       Heron

May you please use it in a sentence?

If Gail had not seen the heron fly down from the tree, she would have insisted the huge bird nested on the ground.

May you please repeat the word?            Heron

What's the word again?          Heron.

Hairwink?   Heron.   Harrow?   Heron    Hairline?  Heron

Hurling?  Heron     May you please repeat the word?...........

  This heron's dedication to its mission had it almost oblivious to my presence.  I positioned myself ahead of it on the pier while it slowly moved forward to a point where it got too close for my lens to focus.  At that point I would walk ahead another 50 feet and wait for the next fish to venture into the bird's strike-zone.  I swear if I stayed stationary the hungry fish-eater would have just stepped around me and continued on.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Ludington Avocets 7/22/16

     This morning Brian Allen relayed to MichListers a report from Linda Scribner of 19 American Avocets in Manistee.  Because I didn't get home from work last night until 11 AM this morning, I had no desire to ride up there to chase them.
    Luckily, shortly after I woke up this afternoon the Mostly Birds (but not Always) hotline lit up with a call from Dave Dister.  Dave was at Ludington Harbor where he was observing 16 Avocets. Despite the fact I was getting ready to start eating breakfast/lunch (dinner?) and got caught by an accident-induced road closure on the way, I made it to the south pier in about 20 minutes.  When I arrived I saw the flock fly out to the end of the pier before I reached the shoreline. They circled around and landed on the beach on the far side of the marsh area about 200' away.  

   As they were settling down a 30' cabin cruiser approached their patch of beach which sent the birds back to the air. They circled a couple of times then headed to points southward.

   Other birds of note at the harbor
Northern Pintail with two young Hooded Mergansers
Earlier in the week a few shorebirds were observed

Spotted Sandpiper

Spotted Sandpiper chick