Sunday, September 25, 2005

I haven't had much time for birding recently; I've been preparing for a business trip to India and Sri Lanka. Of course, I'm hoping to see some birds there that I've never seen before, such as the Common Hoopoe. (This illustration is from the field guide, Birds of India by Grimmett and Inskipp.) I probably won't see one in the cities I visit, but maybe from the train on the way to Pune. I'll be the guy with the sore neck from trying to look out both sides of the car at the same time.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

This is just a small section of the Barn Swallow flock I watched almost daily in late September last year as the birds went to roost in a cornfield. The flock extended far beyond the edges of this photo, and even within the photo there are many birds in the distance which the camera lens could not resolve. This evening I saw it happening again north of Grand Island in Yamhill Co.

Barn Swallows at this time of the year are also forming large flocks, and especially just at dusk as they go to roost. This evening, near the Willamette River in Yamhill Co., I watched as many 10's of thousands (and maybe more than that) gathered and gradually descended into fields of standing corn where they will spend the night. I haven't yet found an effective way to photograph the amazing spectacle.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Vaux's Swift

This evening at dusk a flock of about 1,000 Vaux's Swifts entered an unused chimney in my neighborhood to spend the night, a sure sign that the end of summer is approaching. A few weeks more and they will all have departed for their wintering areas in Central America, and maybe even south to Venezuela.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Black-capped Chickadee

Fortunately, even when the schedule does not allow for "going birding," a few birds, such as this Black-capped Chickadee, seem to feel at home in my backyard. Actually, they seem to consider it their yard, but that's OK with me.