Tag Archives: Birding in Texas

~Birding in Texas, Pine Siskin

~South Llano River State Park, Junction, TX, November, 2017

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Pine Siskin

Although it is patterned like a sparrow, its shape, actions, and song all reveal that this bird is really a goldfinch in disguise.

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Note the shape of the bill.

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It was fun to observe 30+ Pine Siskin up close. In Colorado I would see them while hiking; however they tended to flit high in the trees out of photo range.

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Cammouflage

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To learn more about the Pine Siskin go to: Pine Siskin.

 

~Birding in Texas, Hermit Thrush

~South Llano River State Park, Junction, TX, November, 2017

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Hermit Thrush

I believe this is the first photo of a Hermit Thrush I have taken. Generally, I don’t get an opportunity to observe one. This one was hanging around one of the bird blinds at South Llano River State Park when we were there over Thanksgiving, and I am thankful I got its photograph.

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A few facts about the Hermit Thrush – taken from WhatBird.Com….

Hermit Thrush: Small thrush, with olive-brown to red- or gray-brown upperparts, black-spotted white underparts and rufous tail. Distinct white eye-ring. Pink legs, feet. Swift direct flight, may hover briefly over prey. Considered to have one of the most beautiful songs of all North American birds. The state bird of Vermont.

  • In the Appalachian Mountains the Hermit Thrush is displaced at lower elevations by the Veery and at higher elevations by Swainson’s Thrush.
  • East of the Rocky Mountains it usually nests on the ground. In the West, it is more likely to nest in trees.
  • Walt Whitman construes this bird as a symbol of the American voice, poetic and otherwise, in his elegy for Abraham Lincoln, ‘When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’.
  • A group of thrushes are collectively known as a “hermitage” and a “mutation” of thrushes.

Range and Habitat

Hermit Thrush: Breeds from central Alaska east to Newfoundland and south to southern California, northern New Mexico, Wisconsin, and Virginia. Spends winters from Washington and southern New England southward. Preferred habitats include coniferous and mixed forests; deciduous woodlands and thickets are favored during migration and winter.

~Happy Birding~

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The beautiful South Llano River

 

~South Llano River State Park

 

~South Llano River State Park, Junction, TX, November, 2017

Howard and I spent several days, during the Thanksgiving holiday at South Llano River State Park. Because, it was a holiday weekend the campground was full and crowded. Lots of people enjoying this beautiful park, birding, walking, hiking, biking and fishing.

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South Llano River

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Fallen

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Me and my buddy!

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A little Fall color

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Hiding in the Woods

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Clear Water

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Mules

Of course some of us were enjoying taking photos. More to come from South Llano River State Park.

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Vermillion Flycatcher

~Spring birding in Texas-

 

~South Llano River State Park, Junction, TX, Spring, 2017

 

A few more bird photos from our stay at South Llano River State Park; I think I am getting close to publishing all of them.

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Lincoln’s Sparrow

 

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Brown-headed Cowbird

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Vermilion Flycatcher

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Yellow Warbler
Yellow Warbler

I only saw this Yellow Warbler once; flew in to get a drink of water and flew away. Might have been nesting.

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House Sparrow

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House Finch

This male House Finch is starting to show his breeding colors.

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Black-throated Sparrow
Black-throated Sparrow

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Black-chinned Hummingbird

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Northern Cardinal pair

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House Finch
House Finch

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Summer Tanager (female)

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Yellow-rumped Warbler and a very wet Black-crested Titmouse

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“Has anyone seen my mate? She is a pretty yellow girl.”

Summer Tanager (male)

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Carolina Chickadee

This Carolina Chickadee just didn’t want his photo taken.

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Happy Birding!

~Birding in Texas, White-winged Dove

~South Llano River State River, Junction, TX, Spring, 2017

 

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White-winged Dove (adult) Note the dark cheek patch and blue around the eye

These beautiful doves are easy to photograph, they are slow moving and like to perch for extended periods of time. They were plentiful in South Llano River State park this past Spring. The males were beginning to show subtle breeding colors, brighter red feet and legs, and yellowish hues around the back of neck. We only get to see them while traveling south. They have a limited range in the US, mostly Texas.

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White-winged Dove

I was sitting in one of the blinds when a Texas farmer came in and sat down. He was very friendly and a good photographer. He commented on the large number of White-winged Doves we were seeing. He stated him and his wife have too many doves around their farm. I could tell by the way he spoke, they didn’t seem to care for these doves. I’am not sure if they caused them problems or they just didn’t like them. Maybe they ate too much bird seed!

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This from Wikipedia- “The white-winged dove is a dove whose native range extends from the south-western United States through Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. In recent years with increasing urbanization and backyard feeding, it has expanded throughout Texas, into Oklahoma, Louisiana and coastal Mississippi. It has also been introduced to Florida.”

Happy Birding!

 

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~Birding in Texas, Black-crested Titmouse

First day of Fall! Yay!

 

~Birding in Texas, South Llano River State Park, Spring, 2017

 

Black-crested Titmouse
Black-crested Titmouse

It was nice this Titmouse had a sunflower seed in its mouth and was intend on eating. They are always flitting around, never still.

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Upside down.

 

It takes a contortionist to eat a little seed.

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Sweet face. Big, pretty eyes!

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Located in western Texas, they prefer oak woods and feed on insects and seeds. My first sighting of this bird was back on 11/20/2008, at South Llano River State Park.

 

Happy Birding!

 

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~Birding in Texas, Goldfinch

~ South Llano River State Park, Spring, 2017

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Goldfinch – Lessor

Back to South Llano River State Park for some additional photos. There were several goldfinches around the park; most of them enjoying the feeders set around the blinds. They were beginning to show their breeding colors.

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Goldfinch – Lessor

I can’t say why I like this photo, but I do. This little lessor goldfinch seems to be hiding under a leaf. Look close and you can see his eye. Note the dark color of the legs and the short tail.

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Goldfinch – American or Lessor?

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American Gold Finch
Goldfinch

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Goldfinch – American

Note the pail color of the bill and legs.

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Goldfinches – American

Note the longer tail.

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“Is my head getting dark?”

~Happy Birding~

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