Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Golden-crowned Sparrow, Belle Isle

Finally, the first chaseable bird in southeastern Michigan for quite some time.  And close!  Nice to leave the hospital - something I never have a chance to do - for a slightly extended lunch hour to see this bird and many other chasers I have an opportunity to see only at special occasions - like a Golden-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia atricapilla) in town.  

The bird offered good viewing through binoculars, but not the greatest photo ops.  Many of those with big lens DSLRs got some pretty decent pics.  Unfortunately, I had to hit the delete key pretty hard. All photos were taken through the feeder viewing window.  

For many reasons, the birds were skittish this morning.  One reason was the juvenile Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) perched just above the feeders. Prior to my arrival others saw the hawk pounce on a rat, but somehow the rat escaped.  Another time, Canada Geese flying over dispersed the birds.

This happens to me often - the backside view is often the most in-focus photo.  Go figure.

Sean Bachman reported seeing a "female-type" Purple Finch.  Later when most other birders had left, I saw the Purple Finch perched alone high in a leafless tree.

The Purple Finch (Carpodacus purpureus) flew down to join the others in the open and reasonably close to the viewing window.  

While the photos are fine for me to remember the sparrow by, I'm sorry they are not better for viewers of my blog.  For really sweet photos of the Golden-crowned Sparrow, check out Jerry Jourdan's blog.

Very well spent lunch time today.  

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