Photo Gallery - 2013 Field Trips

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All photographs ©2013 by Mary Beth Stowe

 

April 26, 2013 - South Padre Island (The Great 2013 Fallout)

 

It's been said that a spring migration fallout of this magnitude hasn't happened in the last 20 years!  My wonderful boss let me take a last-minute vacation day to run out to South Padre on Friday, after the worst of the weather had passed through.  Those that braved the actual storm reported masses of migrating songbirds stacking up off shore after their trans-Gulf flight from the Yucatan, and as they hit the storm front they dropped from the skies and filled every green thing!  By Friday the front had passed, but the morning fog kept migrants grounded; I pulled into a parking spot at the Convention Centre, stepped out of the car, and this is what greeted me:

 

 

 

The bulk of these are Baltimore Orioles; there's a Painted Bunting on the bottom right edge!

 

Scarlet Colley and her husband George were the "maître d's" of this avian feast, along with their friends Robin and Troy, and they and many volunteers supplied and cut oranges for thousands of hungry and tired migrants, along with seed and live mealworms!  (The kids really enjoyed helping with that last part... ☺)  It was such an "event" that even non-birding families came out to see the spectacle!

 

The water feature

 

Female Redhead, an abundant winter visitor that should basically be gone by now...

 

Cattle Egret in the back of the building

 

   

Tricolored Heron out on the boardwalk

 

Yellow-billed Cuckoo

 

   

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 

   

Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are normally gone by now, but this lady knows a good deal when she finds it!

 

Eastern Wood Pewee

 

   

Acadian Flycatcher

 

    

Philadelphia Vireo

 

Wood Thrush

 

   

Gray-cheeked Thrush

 

Veery

 

 

Gray Catbird

 

   

This female Northern Parula is wearing a little hat!

 

            

Another female Northern Parula

 

   

Male Tennessee Warbler

 

Female Tennessee Warblers squabbling over an orange

 

Nashville Warbler

 

   

Female Blue-winged Warbler

 

Yellow Warbler

 

        

Magnolia Warbler

 

Female Cerulean Warbler

 

   

Male Blackpoll Warbler

 

A damp Prothonotary Warbler in the early morning

 

       

Female Black-and-white Warbler

 

A couple on the boardwalk ponder a very tame American Redstart (below)!

 

        

 

          

Her "hubby" was out there seeking out bugs as well!

 

   

The very skulky Swainson's Warbler, in natural habitat at left, and after banging into the Convention Centre, right (no worries--he recovered...)

 

Ovenbird

 

   

Northern Waterthrush

 

The Kentucky Warbler is normally very skulky...

 

     

...but when mealworms are on the menu, they come out of hiding!

 

Male Hooded Warbler

 

 

Adult female Hooded Warblers can have a variable amount of black around the "hood".  This one shows a tiny bit...

 

   

...while this one shows much more black.

 

 

First-year females show no black at all.

 

First year male Summer Tanager

 

   

Female Summer Tanager

 

"Hmm--where do I start?!"

 

 

"And what're you lookin' at?!"

 

Tourist capturing the Summer Tanager on his IPhone

 

Professional photo shoot (notice the Scarlet Tanager in the grass)!

 

A little boy captures a Scarlet Tanager on his IPhone!

 

          

Said Scarlet Tanager feeding in the grass

 

Tasty mealworms are on the sidewalk!

 

"Scarlet and Scarlet":  a Scarlet Tanager (lower left) can't wait for Scarlet Colley to cut his orange!

 

Buntings and grosbeaks at a feeding station

 

Tree full of Rose-breasted Grosbeaks

 

Male Rose-breasted Grosbeak

 

Female Rose-breasted Grosbeak

 

        

Young male and non-breeding Rose-breasted Grosbeaks show various stages of mottled plumage before coming into their clean plumage!

 

   

Indigo Bunting gang

 

Indigo Bunting

 

   

Male Painted Buntings (above and below)

   

 

Female Painted Buntings

 

Dickcissel

 

       

Bobolink, rare in the Valley (above and below)

 

       

 

Yellow-headed Blackbird

 

 

Baltimore Oriole (male)

 

 

 

"This is my orange!!"  Two female Baltimore Orioles face off, while an immature Orchard Oriole (with the black throat) goes after his own orange!

 

 

 

Another male Baltimore Oriole with a female Orchard Oriole on the left.

 

Male Orchard Oriole

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