I Call Them All Otis

Dauphin Island is known for its abundant Pelican population, and since it seemed like they spent their days simply “sittin’ on the dock of the bay” – I took to calling them all Otis!

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When these birds weren’t lounging on the docks, they could often be seen standing (or snoozing) on the rocks.

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Sometimes one would fly by….like this fine but funny-looking fellow…who looks to me like one of those cartoon birds getting ready to deliver a baby…


and other times they would leisurely drift along in the water.

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When they would stand and stretch their enormous wings, it seemed as if they were competing to be named “The Maestro of Mobile Bay.”

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I had so much fun taking Pelican pictures – partly because they are rather slow moving and easy to get in focus, and partly because they seem like a throwback to some prehistoric era.


I really did hate to say goodbye; so instead, I simply said, “See you later, Otis!”


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A Grand Ole Osprey

One of the highlights of my time in Dauphin Island was seeing my very first Osprey in the wild!

On the first morning of our trip, we were exploring the Audubon Trail and saw a large bird swooping in over our heads.  It turned out to be an Osprey, landing in the treetops with a fresh fish grasped in its claws.

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The photos are fuzzy, but I had to include them since they were my first time capturing this bird in a picture.

As the week went on, we saw more Osprey and learned their preferred perches, like the tops of pine trees…


…and the branches that overlooked the lake.  Doesn’t the second picture below make him look a little like a Disney villain?

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Between the shifting clouds and my shifting positions (picture me standing awkwardly on a bench on the end of the dock, bracing myself so as not to end up as gator bait!) the background began to improve.

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My favorite photo is probably this one of him peering out over the water, patiently waiting for the right time to strike.


And finally, with nothing but bright blue sky behind him, doesn’t he look like majestic enough to crown him King of the Island!


I can see why Tiny over at Tiny Lessons Blog has fallen in love with these grand creatures; I am now totally smitten with them myself!

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A Well-Fed Fellow

I just got back from spending a wonderful week at Dauphin Island.  My parents invited me (and my camera) to accompany them on a trip in their RV to this barrier island that sits between the Gulf of Mexico and Mobile Bay, and which happens to be a haven for all kinds of birds!

As soon as we arrived, Mom and I left Dad in charge of setting up camp while we rushed off to get our toes in some sand! Right away, we encountered this handsome Heron who was patrolling the beach in search of an afternoon snack.


He would stare at the water intently and then quickly stab at a fish.


Then he would stroll a bit…


…turn to stare at the water…


…and repeat the process!


It was fascinating to watch how each time he came away with a catch, he would turn and head back to the sand to partake of his prize.  He didn’t want the fish (which is the true definition of fast food!) to be able to swim away if he dropped it!


We watched him for quite awhile, and then left to walk the beach, assured that this Heron was one well-fed fellow.


I had a wonderful week, and can’t wait to share more posts and pictures in the days ahead!

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The Flash

Have you ever seen the show “The Flash”?
Hubby and I just finished season one, and now I am addicted!  Each episode features Barry Allen, a lovable geek who, in true comic book fashion, dons a fiery red suit and races about at super speeds saving the day.  He comes and goes as a fleeting flash of red.

As mush as I enjoy the show, my favorite flash of red is still found on the Red-bellied Woodpecker who is a frequent visitor in my backyard.


Finished with the molt that had him looking rather ragged for awhile, this fellow is now absolutely stunning.

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He is another one of those birds that actually takes my breath away.


At the risk of being overly corny, this guy really is super!


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Hey Diddle Diddle

Hey diddle, diddle the Downy is little,


the Titmouse is shifty and shy.


The Chickadee’s perky,


the Nuthatch it quirky,


and the Blue Jay’s a nut-lovin’ guy!


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Happiness Is…

For this Nuthatch, happiness is a plump peanut…


…followed by a drop of fresh water.


Ahhh…it’s the little things in life!

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Brushstrokes of Beauty

Pine Warbler

Pine Warbler

When I downloaded this photo it almost looked like a painting to me. I can so easily see the brushstrokes on his feathers.  This makes me wish I were an artist!

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