My apologies to you all. I have to interrupt your regularly scheduled blog post, (which is about the Blessing of the Fleet), in order to show you who passed through late this afternoon.
We’ve experienced some weird weather this month, with fronts coming through every week. With each front has come a group of migratory birds. They are most active between 4:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. This afternoon, a huge flock blew in on the breezes of the frontal system. And it’s such a phenomenally fantastic event for me, because I didn’t get to go down to the oak chenier on Grand Isle for the annual spring migration and walk the woods like I usually do. But the really cool thing is that I have oak trees on my land, and for some odd reason, these birds prefer oaks over the other species that grow here.
Of course there were the usual migrants like grosbeaks, but this time, there was a multitude of teeny, tiny, warblers like I’ve never seen. There are at least 46 different species of warbler, which are so hard to identify, that I never really took that much interest. (Yes, I’m a lazy birder.) Besides, they are SO small and they flit about SO much, that they’re almost impossible to photograph.
What with my 300 zoom lens on the fritz, I’ve been frustrated about not being able to photograph the migrants, anyway. But today, I was so overwhelmed with the sheer numbers of warblers and so ashamed of my lack of experience in positively identifying them, that I took the challenge.
First, I had to watch the branches and leaves very closely through the binoculars, for among all those green leaves were these feathered jewels flitting this way and that, teasing and provoking me. Then I had to slowly switch from the binoculars to my camera, without scaring the birds away. Because my camera lens doesn’t magnify as highly as the binoculars do, it was very difficult to spot the birds through the view finder. So, most of the shots were similar to a “shot in the dark” or a “point and shoot” method.
It wasn’t until I got to my computer, uploaded all 100 photos, and went through them one by one, zooming in with the photo-editing software, that I was able to get a closer look that these beauties.
And if I must say so myself, it was very rewarding. And I’m very proud to share those results with you now! (I apologize for the photo quality–lack of proper zoom lens.)
Sit back and enjoy the show!
And then there was this amazing creature, and I just had to include him in this photo album. He’s bigger than a warbler, and that is why his photo is much more in focus. Isn’t he just the most exquisite bird you’ve seen in a while?
Oh, I know that some of you would rather be reading about the boat blessing or the opening of shrimp season, but I will get to those topics eventually. But this evening, visions of warblers are still dancing in my head, and in order to get them out of my head, I had to share them with you!
For the birds,