Tuesday, November 29, 2011

On the move

I am linking up with World Bird Wednesday   and Nature Notes

It is neat to see different birds during their migrations.... like the winter ducks. But, my favorite bird that is sometimes seen in the winter is the Snowy Owl. I have been reading the Jersey reports and HEADS UP  birders a Snowy Owl is being seen in New Jersey. The Snowy Owls breed in the artic but can be found along the Atlantic Coast in the winter months. They are looking for food and they are usually juveniles.



This is my Snowy Owl seen here a few years ago in Maryland. It might be worth a trip back to this spot to see if another Snowy Owl has shown up.



These ARCHIED photos are cropped I was a good distance away from the owl. I wanted to view this beautiful bird so I stayed a distance away so the bird did not flush or feel harassed. I watched this Snowy owl for a while....sometimes it would turn its head and sometimes its eyes were closed.



The Long Tailed ducks are also showing up, hubby and I saw a female this past weekend at Hoppers Island. My favorite place to see ducks is the Barnegat Lighthouse Park in New Jersey. I have seen these beautiful Long Tailed ducks and the pretty Harlequins.



Above is the female I saw last weekend, the male is from Barnegat seen last February.

I just realized I have not change my list of Top Ten Most Wanted to see birds from 2009


1. Snowy Owl.. seen @ Assateague...added Snow Bunting...seen Cape Henlopen...2011

2. Whip-poor-will...Seen at Magee Marsh.. 05/2011

3. Blackburian Warbler...a male...seen at Magee Marsh 05/2011

4. Green Jay....maybe a Texas trip

5. Snipe....seen Baltimore County...2011

6. Horned Lark...seen Freeland, MD....American Woodcock... seen Magee Marsh  05/2011

7. Yellow Breasted Chat

8. Bittern... any------seen April 2009 birding trip with club

9. Chestnut-backed Chickadee

10. Whooping Crane
 
I have now seen 6 of my top ten list. Now I need to make a new list.

To see more wonderful birds check out World Bird Wednesday  and Nature Notes..  Thanks to Springman for hosting World Bird Wednesday and to Michelle for hosting Nature Notes. Also, thanks for stopping by to see my post. Have a great week and Happy Birding.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Just being thankful

I am linking up with Mosaic Monday and Our World Tuesday

This was the first year in maybe 20 years I did not have Thanksgiving dinner at my house. We were all invited to my sisters house for dinner. I was asked to bring dessert which was my homemade Derby pie and a Pumpkin roll. I am thankful for my hubby and son, my family and my job that allows me to take my vacations. I was even thankful for having a furlough day on Black Friday. Not to go shopping but, hubby and I were able to take a day trip to Blackwater NWR and Hoppers Island on the Eastern shore of Maryland. It was a beautiful day. So below are a couple of  photos from my sister's, we had a nice sighting of the white tailed deer in her backyard. The deer were having their own Thanksgiving dinner. Other photos are from Friday's visit to Blackwater NWR and Hoopers Island.







Some of the Blackwater birds above are the Eagle, Killdeer, swans and lots of Canada Geese.









I am thankful for the simple things in life like watching deer and the birds. Seeing beautiful scenery and lovely skies.

A Blackwater NWR scene, birds seen were lots of eagles, canada geese, swans, some shorebirds and Great Blue Herons.

Great Blue Heron at Blackwater NWR

Hooper Island on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.

Female Long Tailed duck seen at Hoopers Island, Md. Looks like the ducks are migrating now, we saw this Long-Tailed and the Buffleheads.




 

I am thankful for the simple things like watching the sunset from my deck.

To see more wonderful  mosaics Mosaic Monday and some post from around the world  Our World Tuesday. Thanks to mary for hosting Mosaic Monday and thanks to the gang at Our World: Sylvia, Gattina, Lady Fi, Arija and Sandy.

Thanks, also for stopping by to visit my blog. I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful week.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Birding>>>Panama's Pacific Playa Blanca

I am linking up with Camera Critters

Two nights of our Panama trip we stayed at the Playa Blanca Resort on the Pacific Ocean. Our Caravan tour group was able to enjoy the all inclusive resort for two nights. When we were not touring with the group we were able to enjoy the beach, pools, drinks and way too much food on the buffets. Hubby and I enjoyed our walks on the beach. The scenery was pretty and I loved watching the birds. I was surprised to see a lot of the birds I was seeing were the same birds I saw at home during the summer.

My bird list from the resort: Brown Pelicans, Magnificent Frigatebirds, Willets, Whimbrels, Sanderlings, Swallows, Yellow warbler, Tennessee Warbler, Tropical Mockingbird, Little Blue Heron, Black Vultures, Great Egret, Snowy Egret and lots of Boat Tailed Grackles.

Willet

Tropical Mockingbird

Yellow Warbler

Tennessee Warbler

One of my favorite herons the Little Blue Heron

Pelicans and Magnificent Frigatebirds flying around this sailboat.

I hope your enjoyed my critter post and to see more wonderful critters please visit Camera Critters. Thanks to Misty Dawn for hosting Camera Critters. Thank You for stopping by to see my post. I hope everyone is having a great weekend. Happy Birding!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

SWF>>>>Panama

I am linking up with Skywatch Friday and Friday Ark

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone, I hope you have a safe and happy holiday!

These shots were from the boat ride we took thru the Panama Canal. It was a four hour ride and a very neat experience to go thru the locks and to learn the history of the Panama Canal. It was cool also to look for birds from the boat. I saw lots of Brown Pelicans, Magnificent Frigatebirds, Blue-footed Booby, Seagulls, Herons, Egrets and some White Ibis.


                                A vew of Panama City from the causeway.

A lifer.... the Blue-footed Booby seen while on the boat ride as we entered the canal

Every day we saw a steady stream of Vultures flying over the Panama Canal.

One of the many Brown Pelicans seen at the Panama Canal.

Bridge of the Americas

I hope you enjoyed my Panama skies and birds and to see more beautiful photos please click on my link Skywatch Friday and Friday Ark

Thanks to the host of Friday Ark and to the hosting group at Skywatch. Also, thanks for stopping by to see my post. I appreciate your visits and comments. Have a great weekend, happy skywatching and happy birding.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Toucan and Monkey Island

I am linking up with World Bird Wednesday  and Nature Notes

During our trip to Panama, our tour group took a boat ride out to Monkey Island. This tour reminded me of the boat rides we took on our Costa Rica vacation. Very cool! The guys driving the three boats were pretty experienced at finding the Capuchin monkeys. Plus, I think it helped they had some spare grapes on board.



This is the second three toed sloth we saw during our time in Panama. The boat drivers were quick to spot this cool looking critter. It is actually the first time I was able to see a face on the sloth. Usually, it is hidden.


We were warned not to laugh at the monkeys because it could make them agressive. But, as soon as the drivers spotted the monkeys, the monkeys immediately came closer to the boats. I think they knew where the spare grapes were kept. Some of the ladies in our tour group started screaming when the monkeys jumped on the boat. At that point I was laughing hysterically and trying to take some shots of the monkeys at the same time.

These are the white faced Capuchin Monkeys.



We were told if they were NOT fed by the drivers they could get agressive. There is only so much food on this little island and they are use to being fed.


The Capuchin monkey trying to make a get away with the grapes.




One of the Capuchin monkeys walking on top of the other boat.



More of the Capuchin Monkeys


My favorite sighting... the Keel Billed Toucan




One of the main highlights of Monkey Island for me was seeing the Keel Billed Toucan. I just love these birds.

To see more wonderful birds click on my link World Bird Wednesday and Nature Notes.

Thanks to Springman for hosting World Bird Wednesday and to Michelle for hosting Nature Notes. Also, I appreciate your visits and comments. I hope everyone has a great week and a Happy Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Panama highlights

I am linking up with Mosaic Monday  and Our World Tuesday

I wish everyone a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

In these mosiacs are some of the highlights from the first two days of our Panama vacation.







Seeing 7 new hummingbirds was also a treat for me the first day, the Violet-Bellied Hummingbird had the prettiest colors.

In the two previous posts I showed some more of my first day birding the Rainforest Discovery Center and the Pipeline Rd.

The second day included Panama Viejo (Old Panama) ruins and visitors center.


On our city tour I was still looking for birds, you never know when you might see a new bird.

And I did see a new bird as we were leaving the ruins. It is called the Saffron Finch. A pretty yellow bird and another lifer for me.





The Tropical Kingbirds were all over the place.


We also visited the San Jose Church with the gold alter and had  lunch at the Panama Canal's Miraflores Locks. The lunch banquet room at the locks included our own viewing area to watch the ships pass thru the locks. My blog Travel with Eileen has a little more info and photos on the Panama Viejo visitor's center and the ruins.




San Jose Church, we were told a story that in the old days the alter was painted black to hide the gold.


Right now they let ships go thru the locks in one direction for 12 hours and then they switch the directions for the other 12 hours. Ships have to wait in line for their turn either at the entrance of the Pacific or Atlantic Oceans. Additional locks are being built to handle even larger size ships than the ones we saw, so there is construction work constantly happening at the Panama Canal.


The brown pelicans seem to like fishing at the Canal locks. Other birds seen near the locks were the Magnificent Frigatebirds, Swallows, Black Vultures and Turkey Vultures and Laughing Gulls .


Please check out all the mosaic and photos at Mosaic Monday and Our World Tuesday.  Thanks to Mary for hosting Mosaic Monday and to all the hosts of Our World Tuesday: Arija, Sylvia, Gattina, Lafy Fi and Sandy. Thanks also for stopping by to see my post, I hope everyone has a safe and happy week ahead.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

More Panama Birds

I am linking up with Friday Ark  and Camera Critters

These are more pic's from my birding outing with Justo of Panama's Just Adventures

Arriving a day early for our tour allowed hubby and I to go out for our day of birding. Justo took us to the Discovery Center and the famous Pipeline Road. I got 30 new lifers from our Panama trip.

These are some of the birds and a sloth we saw at the Pipeline Rd and the Rainforest Discovery Center.



Pipeline Rd sloth,  the first of three sloths we saw while in Panama for the week.



Rufous Motmot a beautiful bird and one of my 30 new lifers.



Social Flycatcher....lifer



Crimson Crested Woodpecker, similiar to the Pileated Woodie I see at home. Near this same spot we saw a Black Striped Woodcreeper. I was sorry to see it fly away before I could snap a pic. Both of these birds were also lifers.




Lots of new Hummingbird lifers, like the White Necked Jacobin another lifer.


The Pipeine Road, famous spot for birding in Panama.



A group of Black Bellied Whistling ducks, these are one of my favorite ducks. At this spot we saw the ducks, GB Heron, Wattled Jacana, Ringed Kingfisher, a beautiful Blue Dacnis. I was sorry to see that my photos of these beautiful birds were just a blurry mess. But, it was still exciting to see all of these new birds.

I hope you enjoyed my birds and sloth post. I hope you all have a great weekend and Happy Birding.

I hope you can check out more birds and animals on the Friday Ark  and Camera Critters.  Thanks to the host of Friday Ark and to Misty Dawn of Camera Critters. I look forward to these memes and to seeing all the birds and critters.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

SWF>>>>Birding Panama

For my Skywatch Friday post I have some photos of our visit to Panama's Rainforest Discovery Center. Hubby and I arrived in Panama a day early so we could take a guided bird tour on the famous Pipeline Rd. Our guide Justo of Just Adventures was wonderful and of course I saw a lot of new Panama birds.

We woke up early on a cloudy Saturday morning to meet our guide at 6am Justo was taking us to see the Discovery Center's tower our first stop for birding. So you could see the tower we climbed up to get a birds eye view, I scanned a copy of the photo from THE VISITOR newspaper. We were lucky it was only cloudy,  it is their rainy season.


Hubby was happy to be above the tree line looking at the rainforest below us and I was excited to see some new birds. At the top of the tower we were almost in the clouds, we did manage to find a Bat Falcon and a Black Vulture perched in a tree together. Also, we watched a woodpecker fly away, it was either the Linneated or the Crimson-chested. they both remind me of the Pileated Woodie I see at home. We could  hear the Howler monkeys in the distance.







Above, an awful capture of my lifer the Bat Falcon.



A lot of winding steps up but it was well worth the climb to see the view at the top of this tower.


We were always looking up and this time we saw the Capuchin monkey and we also saw a sloth.


The boardwalk trail leading to the Canopy Tower

Hubby is always amazed and says it is my luck that the skies usually turn out for the better while we are on vacation. I was happy to see the skies turn blue while out on our birding walk.


Back down on the trail, we saw another one of my lifers the White Whiskered Puffbird.

During the week of our vacation in Panama I saw at least 63 species of birds. I have not counted up all my lifers yet but I am sure I saw many new birds. But, a few were some of the same birds I saw in Costa Rica.

I hope you enjoyed my Panama Skywatch Friday post and to see more please click on the link.

Thanks to the hosting group at Skywatch Friday : Sylvia, Wren, Sandy and Fishing Guy.
Also, thank for visiting my blog and post. I always appreciate the visits and comments.
Have a great weekend and Happy Birding!!!