Osprey, Worms and Loons
Yesterday was the first I have seen the Osprey since the snow started on Wednesday. It is hard to believe that it was only a week ago when I was watching these large birds gathering nesting material and copulating at this same platform. Since Osprey captures their food in the water, their wings and muscles do not do well with these colder temperatures. Although, this one individual appeared to be doing alright and I am glad to see they are still in the area.
Temperatures should be back to normal (for this area) by mid week and all our birds should be starting to get back to their normal activities. I am still seeing many of these birds along the roadside (like this Hermit Thrush above). After watching them for 4 days, I was quite amazed at the number of worms that they were able to find. On numerous occasions the Robins and Hermit Thrushes would be seen picking up a cluster of leaves, throw it to the side and then quickly attack if they found any worms there! I even watched this one robin playing tugga war with a worm that refused to come out of the ground! The Robin won that war and its prize was some free lunch but was truly a battle till the end.
This snow has also disrupted the migration of many of our waterfowl. Yesterday I observed some Canada Goose, Mallard, Red-breasted Mergansers, Common Mergansers, Bufflehead, Horned Grebe, Pied-billed Grebe, Scaup sp., and Common Loons. Not one or two but I counted 9 different Common Loons out on Red House Lake. I was lucky enough to hear this one loon vocalize while it took flight and began circling the lake as if to be ready once the weather breaks to continue its migration north. This might not be a first time ever but it has been a very long time since I have seen so many (9) Common Loons together on the lake at the same time. What is unique is that they are all in their alternate plumage (also know as breeding plumage) suggesting that these guys are adults trying to make it back to their breeding grounds early to start nesting. Typically the birds we find in April are the younger birds still in their basic plumage. Many great things should be happening and it is going to be a busy week for me!! Howie Mandel on Thursday, YEAH!!! I will try my best at keeping the blog updated.