Saturday, February 6, 2016

Goodbye Paul and Carolee

Earlier this week, Lorna got three life birds in one day, and another a day earlier. The Blue Buntings (a pair!) and the Crimson-collared Grosbeak are quite rare, the Black-headed Grosbeak and Painted Bunting rare because of location. At this point in our lives, getting three life birds in one day is simply unheard of.

Late yesterday there was a White-throated Thrush seen at Estero Llano Grande so we were out there quite early today to try to get a look at it. This is a rare bird and some birders will travel distances to see it. I had fleeting looks at one last year, but never a real clean look. The bird was cooperative today and we got a few looks. When we first saw it our company only numbered eight or ten people. But grew.

During yesterday evening the bird had been reported to the Texas rare bird alert and soon the parking lot began to fill up, first with birders, then with the camera people.

"Make way, step aside, I am a very, very important photographer with my very important enormous camera mounted on my very large expensive tripod, so I should be in front of all of you simple birders with your silly little binoculars." 

A number of these people always show up for rare birds and they are a distinct pain in the ass. They are not really interested in the birds; they are only interested in "the shot". If there is a hell they will be certainly there in the front row taking photographs. I got a two or three photos with my simple camera, dreadful focus, but clear enough to identify the bird. Paul Prappas got one, still not terrific, but better than mine so I am stealing his. 

White-throated Thrush

After "The Bird" we took a short hike around the park looking at birds, talking to friends and taking a few pictures. Bid farewell to Steve and Sue who are moving on to Florida for the rest of the season.

Great Egret

Red-eared Slider and Fluvous Whistling Ducks

We are about to go over to Bill and Cathy Mauck's for a goodbye dinner for Paul Prappas and Carolee Colter who are leaving early tomorrow morning. It has been great fun and we will sorely miss them all. Until next year.

Joy and sadness - practicing holding two emotions in my heart at one time - Gunnar

1 comment:

Redwing said...

I'll enjoy the valley vicariously through your subsequent posts. We just arrived home and got a fire going. Miss you all.