While personal matters have kept me away from the blog for a while, figured it was time to try and get back into the swing of things. So why not start with Reifel where I usually try to spend my Sunday afternoons helping out on the trails. This time of year can be quiet on the birding and visitor front, but I did manage to find a few cooperative subjects. First up,
… were some Blue-winged Teal that are still hanging around the outer ponds. The west marsh had lots of American Goldfinch activity. They were busy feeding in the tall grass,
… and on the cat tails.
They were also showing up adjacent to the trails as the thistle is blossoming. The only shorebirds around,
… were some Greater Yellowlegs still showing some of their breeding plumage.
To round out the afternoon was this Savannah Sparrow.
It is that time of year again to start watching the thistle for American Goldfinch feeding on them. That was the goal this afternoon, but things don’t always go as planned. While I could hear them in the area, no Goldfinch were showing up on the stretch of thistle I was watching.
There were lots of Bumble Bees cooperating though.
Eventually an American Goldfinch did show up along with another Bumble Bee. While not quite what I was after, it does make for an interesting photo.
To finish things off was this Dragonfly eating a bee.
Not surprisingly the parking lot had room to spare when I arrived to volunteer at Reifel this afternoon. The wonderful weather is likely keeping people occupied elsewhere. While still fairly quiet on the birding front, there were a couple of things to keep me occupied. First up in the west field,
… was this juvenile American Coot.
Seen here interacting with an American Wigeon. I am used to seeing adult plumaged American Coot around here, seeing this juvenile was a nice change of pace. Up next along the outer dyke trail,
… were some American Goldfinch. The goal at this time of year is to get them feeding on the thistle as in the following series of shots.
Even though there were not that many visitors today,
… they all seemed to be going by this particular spot while I was photographing the American Goldfinch. Fortunately the birds kept coming back long enough to get these shots.
Also in the west field, along with the Dowitchers and Yellowlegs, were four Pectoral Sandpipers. Time to get ready for my favourite time of year, the fall shore bird migration.