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Black Vultures

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This flock of Black Vultures was running towards a meal on the highway we were traveling along,  when I quickly snapped the pictures.  I took these pictures through the windshield of our pick-up truck as we drove past.  I took these pictures on Wednesday, October 29, 2014, a few miles from my home.

The more commonly seen Turkey Vultures (red face and brown feathers), and these Black Vultures, are nature’s clean-up squad and often can be found eating dead critters that have been hit by cars on the roads.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Have a safe and happy Halloween!

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Crows at the Pond

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Crows were seen at the larger rainfall retention basin pond here in the development where I live on Oct. 23, 2014.  The Crows were hunting for tadpoles, and tasty insects.  They were there at the pond along with the Killdeer and Lesser Yellowlegs.  I always enjoy watching Crows.  Crows are amazing and quite smart!  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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DSC_5382This Killdeer was among the Lesser Yellowlegs and a couple of Common Crows the other day at the larger rainfall retention basin pond.  These small shorebirds are frequently found inland on grassy pastures or along gravelled areas.  This pond is close to a large cattle pasture and also near large swaths of manicured lawns.

I think the lure of tasty worms and small aquatic insects was what attracted the bird to this pond.  Of course, birds do enjoy a refreshing drink of water now and then and do bath.  I took these pictures on October 23, 2014.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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A Trio of Lesser Yellowlegs

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Three Lesser Yellowlegs, a couple of Killdeer and a few Common Crows all were hunting for their early evening meal at the rapidly drying up rainfall retention basin pond here in the development.  The Yellowlegs are frequent visitors to this seasonal pond.  I noticed that the cattail reeds and grass along the pond’s edge had recently been mown.  I spotted these Yellowlegs last evening at about 5:00 pm.

The Yellowlegs are a wading shorebirds and eat small fish, tadpoles, frogs, turtles, and larger insects.  I think there are a lot of tadpoles (also called pollywogs) in this pond at the moment as well as many worms and insects.  I am always happy to spot wading birds at the pond as it seems to be the only place now that I am seeing wading birds here.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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Here are a few pictures that I have taken of birds and critters in the last couple of weeks.  The green insect is a Leaf Hopper and is about 3″ long.  That insect was on my living room window yesterday morning.  Please click on the thumbnail image and as ever, enjoy!

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This Great Blue Heron is likely one of the baby herons that I had photographed last year here at the local park.  I took these new pictures on Friday, October 17, 2014 in the afternoon.  This was the only Great Blue Heron at the park when I was there.  I had first spotted the handsome big bird while it stood stock-still on the shore of the small Koi pond next to the Japanese style gazebo.  The heron saw me and flew up into a nearby large Pine Tree.

Feeling comfortably safe up in the tree, the next order of business for the heron was preening, or cleaning its feathers.  Of course, one eye was on me.  I have included a few scenic pictures of the park today.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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A Splash of Bright Red

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Male Northern Cardinals graced the Live Oaks here in my yard and in a Live Oak across the street.  There are three older juvenile male Northern Cardinals living in the shrubbery in the front yard across the street.  I saw the three fly up to the trees next door here and tracked them to my own trees.  Sometimes older juvenile males cooperate and live around one another.  Later in their lives, they go their own way.

I have not seen any hens but I am sure some are here.  My next door neighbor has both a bird bath and a bird feeder so the birds are well taken care of here.  I am looking into putting up a feeder of my own soon.  I took these photographs on Oct. 12, 2104.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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