Journal archives for April 2018

14 April, 2018

Butterfly Walk on BCP 2018-04-14

This morning I attended a great butterfly hike and presentation given by Erin Cord and Johanna Arendt on the Snowden tract of Travis County Balcones Canyonlands Preserve land. Observations are attached. I think this is my favorite photo. It looks like an in-flight shot, but actually the butterfly was perched on a single small flower which was completely hidden by its wings and body.

Silvery Checkerspot 2

Posted on 14 April, 2018 21:28 by mikaelb mikaelb | 9 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment

24 April, 2018

Nalle Bunny Run 2018-04-21

On Saturday April 21, 7 people joined me for the monthly group walk on Hill Country Conservancy's Nalle Bunny Run wildlife preserve. It was a cool and cloudy morning. Since rain was threatening, I left my camera behind and don't have any photos. Mosquitoes were thick and the birds were more easily heard than seen for most of the morning. But we still had some fun observations.

Shortly after we started we spotted 4 Great Egrets flying together. I assumed these were north-bound migrants since I never see groups of this species flying high in the sky at other times of the year. Down the hill near the cowbird trap we saw another group of 4 water birds heading north. This time it was 4 Forster's Terns high overhead. This was the first time I've observed this species on the Bunny Run, bringing my bird list for the preserve up to 171 species.

Nearby we watched a newly returned Western Kingbird flycatching from on top of the purple martin houses. And in a mesquite tree we briefly saw an "empid," a small nondescript flycatcher of the genus Empidonax that was on its way north. Later a Red-tailed Hawk flew in and landed at the top of a dead cottonwood tree, and we watched as a Northern Mockingbird flew up to it and chased it away.

In the family cemetery we had our two most crowd-pleasing bird observations. When we arrived we heard a Summer Tanager singing. Everyone got great looks at it as it sang in a tree near Anne Byrd Nalle's grave. And while we watched and listened, a flock of at least 80 Franklin's Gulls flew low, right over us, vocalizing as they passed. Hearing these birds transported me to the Texas coast!

Here's our complete list of birds on eBird.

Posted on 24 April, 2018 22:58 by mikaelb mikaelb | 0 comments | Leave a comment