Monday, April 25, 2011

Weekend birding

We got out birding a bit on Sunday.  Saturday, we spent nearly 7 hours running 36 miles on the trails -- our last long run before our race in a few weeks.  Needless to say, after that we tried to convince ourselves to do a little birding Saturday evening, but were too tired to leave the house!

Sunday meant shorter runs, and time to bird.  We went to a place near our house where we've seen a Great-horned Owl daily on our early-morning running route.  Thomas seems to have a sixth sense to see him, and it didn't fail us yesterday.  He spotted the owl from this distance:
He then used our scope to locate him so we could get a good view.  So gorgeous!  We spent quite a long time watching him.  He'd nap a little bit, preen himself, look around.  Unfortunately, we don't have a great birding camera yet, so these pictures are only OK:
We then headed to a local woods near a lake.  We saw tons of waterbirds including Horned Grebes, many kinds of ducks, and American Avocets!  These last are very rare in our area -- in fact, our birding books do not show that they are in our range at all.  The park ranger mentioned to us they were there, otherwise we probably would have not figured out what they were.  Unfortunately, none of the pictures turned out, which has stoked Thomas's longing to get a better camera.  Walking in the woods, we got a great view of a Barred Owl.  All in all, it was a great day, and we returned home to spend the evening with the parrots.


Elizabeth said...

Impressive! I'm like you - I never see owls. I've probably walked by hundred and never known.

I recommend the Nikon d40 if you're looking for an entry level dSLR. You can pair it with the 55-200mm Nikon lens for about $950 or a 150-300mm Sigma for $850 (the Sigma is not nearly as nice as Nikon). Of course the problem with buying a dSLR is that it's very easy to upgrade. I went from that starter kit to now owning a Nikon d300s and a Sigma 150-500mm lens. And I'm pining away for this $8,000 Nikon lens.

phonelady said...

Yes I want the nikon d 40 as well . I tried to win one when they had that contest when they first came out but sadly I did not win one . always a day late and a dollar short . LOL !!! I think those owl photos are just fine .