Sunday, December 14, 2008

December 14th Blind Report - San Angelo State Park

Northern Bobwhite Invasion
My plan was not to go to the blind this morning. My plan was to go to the Audubon Christmas Bird Count that was going on today. Unfortunately my Saturday night extended into Sunday morning in a less than positive way and I ignored my alarm clock when it went off early this morning. So the next best thing was to drag myself out of bed around 8 and head out to the blind. Good 2nd choice, me thinks...

The blind was very active with lots of color. The laundry list is posted here.

The most amazing part of the morning had to be the full-on invasion of Northern Bobwhite Quail. Now I've seen Bobwhites at the blind before. During most of the spring and summer the norm was to see a mating pair make the rounds, though occassionally I'd see a 3rd (usually a male). Today there was an onslaught of about a dozen. The photographer sitting in the blind with me mentioned that he saw one off in the distance behind the water feature. I agreed and said I thought I saw a couple more. Within seconds that couple more ended up with the dozen or so that walked through.

Woodpeckers were very active this morning. A male Golden-Fronted was making frequent trips into the blind, hitting the seeds that were out there both in perched areas well as on the ground. I'd never seen ground-feeding behavior from the Golden-Fronted so that was a little bit of a surprise. Male and female ladderbacks were in the blind as well and spending a large amount of time close. Admittedly I did not see the female ladderback--the photographer who was in the blind with me took a shot and I confirmed on the photographic evidence he sent me. That also was the first time I've had evidence of a female visiting the blind.

The other surprise sighting of the day was a Greater Roadrunner. Not that they are necessarily unusual, but I've just never seen one in the blind this time of year.

Fun morning in the blind and I hope to make it out again soon.

Image: Northern Bobwhite Invasion, San Angelo State Park, ©2008 Jim Miller

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